|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
14:6-13 The progress of the Reformation appears to be here set forth. The four proclamations are plain in their meaning; that all Christians may be encouraged, in the time of trial, to be faithful to their Lord. The gospel is the great means whereby men are brought to fear God, and to give glory to him. The preaching of the everlasting gospel shakes the foundations of antichrist in the world, and hastens its downfal. If any persist in being subject to the beast, and in promoting his cause, they must expect to be for ever miserable in soul and body. The believer is to venture or suffer any thing in obeying the commandments of God, and professing the faith of Jesus. May God bestow this patience upon us. Observe the description of those that are and shall be blessed: such as die in the Lord; die in the cause of Christ, in a state of union with Christ; such as are found in Christ when death comes. They rest from all sin, temptation, sorrow, and persecution; for there the wicked cease from troubling, there the weary are at rest. Their works follow them: do not go before as their title, or purchase, but follow them as proofs of their having lived and died in the Lord: the remembrance of them will be pleasant, and the reward far above all their services and sufferings. This is made sure by the testimony of the Spirit, witnessing with their spirits, and the written word.
Verse 11. - And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up forever and ever. Compare the wording of the passages quoted above on ver. 10, especially Isaiah 34:9, 10, "The smoke thereof shall go up forever." This statement of the eternity of punishment is also in agreement with Luke 16:26 and Mark 9:44. And they have no rest day nor night, who worship the beast and his image, and whosoever receiveth the mark of his name. "No rest," in contrast with the blessed rest of the saints (ver. 13). Wordsworth says, "Οἱ προσκυνοῦντες τὸ θηρίον is a stronger expression than 'those who worship the beast;' it means those whose distinguishing characteristic is that they are worshipping the beast, and persist in worshipping him, even to the end. This characteristic is so strongly marked that they are here represented as keeping it even after their death." (On the "mark," see on Revelation 13:16-18.)
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever,.... That is, the smoke of that fire which torments them will for ever arise; or, in other words, there will be no end of their torment; hence their misery is called everlasting fire, everlasting punishment, and everlasting destruction, Matthew 25:41 and smoke being very troublesome and distressing, is mentioned to set forth the very uncomfortable state of the wicked; and so it is used by Jewish writers: hence we read of , "the smoke of hell" (r), with which the eyes of the wicked will be filled in the world to come:
and they have no rest, day nor night; the fire of divine wrath which tortures them is never quenched, and the worm of conscience which gnaws them never dies: this is directly contrary to a notion of the Jews, that the wicked in hell have rest sometimes; they talk of angels blowing away the smoke from them, so that they have rest an hour and a half; and which they say they have three times a day, and whenever Israel says Amen, let his great name be blessed (s); and particularly that hell fire never burns on the sabbath day, nor does the smoke of it ascend then, and that the wicked have always rest on that days (t); though sometimes they contradict themselves, and say they never have any rest (u), which is the truth:
who worship the beast and his image, and whosoever receiveth the mark of his name; that is, whoever are the followers of antichrist, or the professors of the Popish religion; so far is salvation from being in the church of Rome, and only there, that there is none in it; and whoever live and die in the profession of Popery, shall surely be damned as this passage is true.
(r) Targum in Psal. xxxvii. 20. T. Bab. Bava Bathra, fol. 75. 1. Caphtor, fol. 109. 1.((s) Zohar in Gen. fol. 47. 4. (t) Zohar in Exod. fol. 36. 4. & in Lev. fol. 45. 3. & in Deut. fol. 115. 3. T. Bab. Sanhedrin, fol. 65. 2. Yalkut Simeoni, par. 2. fol. 149. 1. Nishmat Chayim, fol. 39. 1.((u) Zohar in Exod. fol. 62. 3. T. Bab. Sabbat, fol. 152. 2.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
11. for ever and ever—Greek, "unto ages of ages."
no rest day nor night—Contrast the very different sense in which the same is said of the four living creatures in heaven, "They rest not day and night, saying, Holy, holy, holy"; yet they do "rest" in another sense; they rest from sin and sorrow, weariness and weakness, trial and temptation (Re 14:13); the lost have no rest from sin and Satan, terror, torment, and remorse.
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