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church. It is a kingdom of great power and glory, yet not after the fashion of this world; for it is neither acquired nor preserved by arms It is not founded on worldly policy, over which it is d, oiled to prevail. It is the stone of Daniel's vision, violi, cut out of the mountain without hands, breaks to pieces the kingdoms of the world, miraculous, increasing till it fills the whole earth. “And the king“dom and dominion, and the greatness of the king“dom under the whole heaven, shall be given to the “people of the saints of the Most High, whose king“dom is an everlasting kingdom, and all dominions “shall serve and obey him".” Ver. 28. The morning star.] A star is a teacherf; '... our Lord is cminently such ; and such he intitles himself in ch. xxii. 16. 3 agro 3 Azuzzo, 22, ovo; “the shi/ “ning and morning star.” As such he was foretold in Numbers, xxiv. 17; and a star, it; the eastern and / ^ morning quarter of the hemisphere, preceded his - birth f. As this star, seen by the wise men, sigA nified to them his first coming; so by the star, pro
y so 2
“ven $,” and of its approach in power. Saint Peter, ' ' ' speaking of prophecy, whose office it is in part - # to reveal these mysteries, recommends us to attend diligently to this “light shining in a dark place,”
- * ,
* : * *
until some clearer manifestation shall be reveal
, ed; sw; 8, ope;2 ozvyoze z o.o.googo; aware). A sv Tzi;
s zzouz; to ov, until the day shiie forth, and the day. . . . . o -- t -- : , , * Dan. vii. 27. See the note, ch. ii. 7. and the Scriptures there * , quoted. This reign of the saints is again described in ch. xix. 15. o - - - - - - - --. * * * o + See note, ch. i. 16. : Matt. ii.2. § Matt. xiii. 2. - - - e. ./. - l - * - * - ** • * : * : * , o / Star * - A y - 2. . . . . . . . . . . . . . o . . . . . Y . . . . / * * * * * * * - - - - * o - - - // . o “A - 2. ' * . - • or * * * * * * * * * * * voy a r" ~. --" o * *
2 × ... . . . . . As or
prophetical information, imperfect in its nature, be- o 4 ing “done away,” that perfect knowledge shall suc- o o o ceed, which is like knowing “face to face”.” But a / beside this time of perfect consummation to which , , &o both these apostles may be thought principally to /. . . . .” refer, there is a time promised when the Divine Power o *** o shall “remove the veil spread over all nations f,” Z, x * : and the earth “be filled with the knowledge of the o “glory of the Lord, as the waters cover the seaf.” A 4 - ?, a
This glorious and extensive reign of Christ and of his so so 4. 2.
temptations, and surmount the difficulties of their 2,
and this joy no one shall take from them [.
* 1 Cor. xiii. 10. & 12. + Is. xxv. 7. f Hab. ii. 14.
P A R T I.
S E C T I O N VIII.
The Address to the Church in Sardis.
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1 And to the, angel of
thou livest, and thou
the things remaining,
die; for I have not
have not defiled their
CHAP. iii. vert. 1–6.
Thus saith he
the seven stars. I
thou hast a name, that
Be watchstrengthen which are about to
names in Sardis, which
garments; and they
for they are
And unto the angel of the Church in Sardis, write, These things saith he that hath the seven Spirits of God, and the seven stars; I know thy works, that thou hast a name, that thou livest; and art dead. Be watchful and strengthen the things which remain, that are ready to die: for I have not found thy works perfect before God. Remember therefore how thou hast received and heard, and hold fast, and repent. If therefore thou shalt not watch, I will come on thee as a thief, and thou shalt not know what hour I will come upon thee. Thou hast a few names even in Sardis, which have not defiled their garments; and they shall walk with me in white: for they are worthy. He that overcometh, the same shall be
Ver. 1. Sardis.] Sardis, situated on the Pactolus, the ancient seat of Croesus, and of the Lydian kings,
was proverbially the seat of Riches.
This city had
suffered grievously by an earthquake some time before the date of this vision; but, by the bounty of Tiberius Caesar, had been restored to splendour". Sardis possessed, from its natural situation, extraor
dinary means of acquiring riches.
But riches are
corruptive, and are apt to lead to that supineness in religion, and profligacy in morals, which in this epistle are so severely rebuked.
Sardis is now no more than a village.
cient Christian church supplies the Turks, who in
habit it, with a mosque.
The few Christians (if
such they may be called) who still continue there,
are represented to have neither Church nor minister.
same figurative language, our Lord commanded his
disciples to “let the dead bury their dead ".” The word vszoos, a dead body, is used in its metaphorical sense; “dead,” as Saint Paul expresses it, “in tres“passes and sins; alienated from the life of God f.” The same metaphor occurs frequently in Scripture. A person living in the defilements of the world, in whom the spiritual life in Christ hath little or no vigour, is said to be “dead while he liveth;” as, on the contrary, of him who meets death in the discharge of his Christian duty, it is pronounced, that “he liveth, though he dief.” “The use of this me“taphor has been so common with the Jews, that, as “Maimonides informs us $, they proverbially say, “Impii etiam viventes vocantur mortui, The wicked “are dead, even while they are alive; for he, saith “Philo ||, who lives a life of sin, rs999 as row evèaipova, “is dead as to a life of happiness: his soul is dead, “and even buried in his lusts and passions. And “ because the whole Gentile world lay more especially “under these unhappy circumstances, whence the “apostle styles them sinners of the Gentiles T, it “was proverbially said by the Jewish doctors, Populi “terrarum, i. e. Ethnici, non vivunt, the heathens “do not live **.” An attention to this use of the words death, die, dead, &c. in this figurative language of Scripture, will tend to illustrate many passages otherwise obscure. Such are Matt. xxii. 32. iv, 6. Luke i. 79. Rom. vi. 2. viii. 6. 2 Cor. 1. 9, 10. iii. 6. 1 Pet. iv. 6. So likewise in the sequel of
* Matt. viii. 22. + Eph. ii. 1, 5. iv. 18. ! John xi. 26. Matt. iv. 16. Rom. viii. 6. Eph. v. 14. 1 Tim. v. 6. 1 Pet. iv. 6. 1 John iii. 14. Jude 12. § More Nevoch, lib. 1. | Leg. Alleg. c. 1. "I Gal. ii. 15. * Whitby on 1 Pet. iv. 6.