Revelation 3:17
Parallel Verses
New International Version
You say, 'I am rich; I have acquired wealth and do not need a thing.' But you do not realize that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind and naked.

New Living Translation
You say, 'I am rich. I have everything I want. I don't need a thing!' And you don't realize that you are wretched and miserable and poor and blind and naked.

English Standard Version
For you say, I am rich, I have prospered, and I need nothing, not realizing that you are wretched, pitiable, poor, blind, and naked.

New American Standard Bible
'Because you say, "I am rich, and have become wealthy, and have need of nothing," and you do not know that you are wretched and miserable and poor and blind and naked,

King James Bible
Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked:

Holman Christian Standard Bible
Because you say, I'm rich; I have become wealthy and need nothing,' and you don't know that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind, and naked,

International Standard Version
You say, "I am rich. I have become wealthy. I don't need anything." Yet you don't realize that you are miserable, pitiful, poor, blind, and naked.

NET Bible
Because you say, "I am rich and have acquired great wealth, and need nothing," but do not realize that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind, and naked,

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
“Because you said that you are rich, and, 'I have prospered, and I lack nothing', and you do not know that you are sick and wretched and poor and naked,”

GOD'S WORD® Translation
You say, 'I'm rich. I'm wealthy. I don't need anything.' Yet, you do not realize that you are miserable, pitiful, poor, blind, and naked.

Jubilee Bible 2000
Because thou sayest, I am rich and increased with goods and have need of nothing and knowest not that thou art wretched and miserable and poor and blind and naked,

King James 2000 Bible
Because you say, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and know not that you are wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked:

American King James Version
Because you say, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and know not that you are wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked:

American Standard Version
Because thou sayest, I am rich, and have gotten riches, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art the wretched one and miserable and poor and blind and naked:

Douay-Rheims Bible
Because thou sayest: I am rich, and made wealthy, and have need of nothing: and knowest not, that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked.

Darby Bible Translation
Because thou sayest, I am rich, and am grown rich, and have need of nothing, and knowest not that *thou* art the wretched and the miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked;

English Revised Version
Because thou sayest, I am rich, and have gotten riches, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art the wretched one and miserable and poor and blind and naked:

Webster's Bible Translation
Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked:

Weymouth New Testament
You say, I am rich, and have wealth stored up, and I stand in need of nothing; and you do not know that if there is a wretched creature it is *you* -- pitiable, poor, blind, naked.

World English Bible
Because you say, 'I am rich, and have gotten riches, and have need of nothing;' and don't know that you are the wretched one, miserable, poor, blind, and naked;

Young's Literal Translation
because thou sayest -- I am rich, and have grown rich, and have need of nothing, and hast not known that thou art the wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked,
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

3:14-22 Laodicea was the last and worst of the seven churches of Asia. Here our Lord Jesus styles himself, The Amen; one steady and unchangeable in all his purposes and promises. If religion is worth anything, it is worth every thing. Christ expects men should be in earnest. How many professors of gospel doctrine are neither hot nor cold; except as they are indifferent in needful matters, and hot and fiery in disputes about things of lesser moment! A severe punishment is threatened. They would give a false opinion of Christianity, as if it were an unholy religion; while others would conclude it could afford no real satisfaction, otherwise its professors would not have been heartless in it, or so ready to seek pleasure or happiness from the world. One cause of this indifference and inconsistency in religion is, self-conceit and self-delusion; Because thou sayest. What a difference between their thoughts of themselves, and the thoughts Christ had of them! How careful should we be not to cheat our owns souls! There are many in hell, who once thought themselves far in the way to heaven. Let us beg of God that we may not be left to flatter and deceive ourselves. Professors grow proud, as they become carnal and formal. Their state was wretched in itself. They were poor; really poor, when they said and thought they were rich. They could not see their state, nor their way, nor their danger, yet they thought they saw it. They had not the garment of justification, nor sanctification: they were exposed to sin and shame; their rags that would defile them. They were naked, without house or harbour, for they were without God, in whom alone the soul of man can find rest and safety. Good counsel was given by Christ to this sinful people. Happy those who take his counsel, for all others must perish in their sins. Christ lets them know where they might have true riches, and how they might have them. Some things must be parted with, but nothing valuable; and it is only to make room for receiving true riches. Part with sin and self-confidence, that you may be filled with his hidden treasure. They must receive from Christ the white raiment he purchased and provided for them; his own imputed righteousness for justification, and the garments of holiness and sanctification. Let them give themselves up to his word and Spirit, and their eyes shall be opened to see their way and their end. Let us examine ourselves by the rule of his word, and pray earnestly for the teaching of his Holy Spirit, to take away our pride, prejudices, and worldly lusts. Sinners ought to take the rebukes of God's word and rod, as tokens of his love to their souls. Christ stood without; knocking, by the dealings of his providence, the warnings and teaching of his word, and the influences of his Spirit. Christ still graciously, by his word and Spirit, comes to the door of the hearts of sinners. Those who open to him shall enjoy his presence. If what he finds would make but a poor feast, what he brings will supply a rich one. He will give fresh supplies of graces and comforts. In the conclusion is a promise to the overcoming believer. Christ himself had temptations and conflicts; he overcame them all, and was more than a conqueror. Those made like to Christ in his trials, shall be made like to him in glory. All is closed with the general demand of attention. And these counsels, while suited to the churches to which they were addressed, are deeply interesting to all men.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 17. - Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing. The Epistle is still addressed indirectly to the Laodicean Church, directly to the angel. No doubt spiritual riches are immediately referred to; but spiritual pride and lukewarmness are frequently produced by worldly prosperity, such as that which Archippus (if he be the angel addressed; see on ver. 14) and the Church over which he presided enjoyed. It is not enough for the wealthy Christian to contribute a portion of his wealth, and then to consider his task done and his reward sure. Greater zeal than this is requisite before he can deem his duty discharged. Moreover, the greater the zeal that exists, the less will be the inclination to rely upon what has been accomplished, or to think it sufficient; for when all has been done we are still to call ourselves unprofitable servants (Luke 17:10; cf. Hosea 12:8, "I am become rich, I have found me out substance: in all my labours they shall find none iniquity in me that were sin"). And knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked; and knowest not that thou, even thou thyself, art the wretched one. The self-satisfied spiritual pride of the Pharisee caused him to regard with complacent pity the condition of the publican. But he was mistaken; he himself was the wretched one, who was to be pitied. So with the Laodicean Church. How different the conduct of St. Paul, who recognized his own wretchedness (Romans 7:24, where the same word ταλαίπωρος is used)! The following words are adjectives. These Christians, in their spiritual pride, were miserable - deserving of pity; poor in the wealth accumulated by zeal in God's service; blind as to their real condition and their fancied spiritual safety; and naked of the cloak with which charity - fervent love of God - would have covered them.

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

Because thou sayest, I am rich,.... In worldly goods, which occasioned her lukewarmness, as riches often do, and her vanity, pride, and arrogance, afterwards expressed. Laodicea was a very rich city, and so will be this church state, through the accession of kings and princes, and great men of the earth unto it, in the former period: riches seldom do any good to the churches of Christ, they did not in Constantine's time; and it seems that even at the close of the spiritual reign of Christ they will be of bad consequence, since they will usher in the Laodicean church state: or her meaning is, that she was rich in spiritual things; not in grace, but in external gifts, which still remained, upon the very great pouring forth of the Spirit in the last church state; and in good works, on which she too much trusted for salvation, placing her righteousness in them: she is one whom the Jews (c) call , "rich in the law":

and increased with goods: with outward peace and prosperity, with much natural and divine light and knowledge, with the purity of Gospel ordinances, even beyond the former church state in her own imagination:

and have need of nothing: contenting herself with these external things: true believers, as considered in Christ, stand in need of nothing indeed, they are complete in him, and have everything in him; but, as considered in themselves, they are daily in need of daily food for their souls, as for their bodies, of fresh light and life, strength and comfort, and of new supplies of grace; wherefore this church shows great ignorance of herself, as well as great pride and arrogance to express herself in this manner:

and knowest not that thou art wretched; as all men are in a state of nature and unregeneracy; which may be the case of many professors, and they be ignorant of it; as to be under a sentence of wrath, obnoxious to the curses of the law, in danger of hell and destruction, lost and undone, and unable to extricate themselves out of such a state: true believers account themselves wretched, as the Apostle Paul did, on account of indwelling sin, and the plague of their own hearts, which the members of this church, the greater part of them, were ignorant of:

and miserable; a miserable man is one that is attended with outward afflictions, but this was not the case of this church; and with spiritual poverty, blindness, and nakedness, and this was her case; some persons neither know their misery, nor their need of mercy:

and poor; not in purse, nor in spirit, nor with respect to outward afflictions, nor as to her church state, but in a spiritual sense; one whom the Jews call a (d) , "poor in the law"; as such may be said to be who have nothing to eat that is fit to eat; nothing to wear but rags, and have no money to buy either; who are in debt, and not able to pay, nor to help themselves on any account; and this may be the case of professors, and yet not known and considered by them:

and blind; natural men are blind as to a saving knowledge of God in Christ, as to the way of salvation by Christ, as to the plague of their own hearts, as to the work of the Spirit of God upon the soul, and as to the truths of the Gospel, in the power of them; but here it regards blindness with respect to her church state, and its imperfection:

and naked; sin has stripped man of his moral clothing; man's own righteousness will not cover his nakedness; and whoever is destitute of the righteousness of Christ is a naked person,

(c) Yalkut Simeoni, par. 2. fol. 106. 2.((d) Vajikra Rabba, sect. 34. fol. 173. 4. vid. Targum in Cant. viii. 9.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

17. Self-sufficiency is the fatal danger of a lukewarm state (see on [2685]Re 3:15).

thou sayest—virtually and mentally, if not in so many words.

increased with goods—Greek, "have become enriched," implying self-praise in self-acquired riches. The Lord alludes to Ho 12:8. The riches on which they prided themselves were spiritual riches; though, doubtless, their spiritual self-sufficiency ("I have need of nothing") was much fostered by their worldly wealth; as, on the other hand, poverty of spirit is fostered by poverty in respect to worldly riches.

knowest not that thou—in particular above all others. The "THOU" in the Greek is emphatic.

art wretched—Greek, "art the wretched one."

miserable—So one oldest manuscripts reads. But two oldest manuscripts prefix "the." Translate, "the pitiable"; "the one especially to be pitied." How different Christ's estimate of men, from their own estimate of themselves, "I have need of nothing!"

blind—whereas Laodicea boasted of a deeper than common insight into divine things. They were not absolutely blind, else eye-salve would have been of no avail to them; but short-sighted.

Revelation 3:17 Additional Commentaries
Context
Message to the Church in Laodicea
16'So because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of My mouth. 17'Because you say, "I am rich, and have become wealthy, and have need of nothing," and you do not know that you are wretched and miserable and poor and blind and naked, 18I advise you to buy from Me gold refined by fire so that you may become rich, and white garments so that you may clothe yourself, and that the shame of your nakedness will not be revealed; and eye salve to anoint your eyes so that you may see.…
Cross References
Hosea 12:8
Ephraim boasts, "I am very rich; I have become wealthy. With all my wealth they will not find in me any iniquity or sin."

Zechariah 11:5
Their buyers slaughter them and go unpunished. Those who sell them say, 'Praise the LORD, I am rich!' Their own shepherds do not spare them.

Matthew 5:3
"Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

1 Corinthians 4:8
Already you have all you want! Already you have become rich! You have begun to reign--and that without us! How I wish that you really had begun to reign so that we also might reign with you!

Revelation 3:16
So, because you are lukewarm--neither hot nor cold--I am about to spit you out of my mouth.
Treasury of Scripture

Because you say, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and know not that you are wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked:

I am.

Revelation 2:9 I know your works, and tribulation, and poverty, (but you are rich) …

Proverbs 13:7 There is that makes himself rich, yet has nothing: there is that …

Hosea 12:8 And Ephraim said, Yet I am become rich, I have found me out substance…

Zechariah 11:5 Whose possessors slay them, and hold themselves not guilty: and they …

Luke 1:53 He has filled the hungry with good things; and the rich he has sent empty away.

Luke 6:24 But woe to you that are rich! for you have received your consolation.

Luke 18:11,12 The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, God, I thank you, …

Romans 11:20,25 Well; because of unbelief they were broken off, and you stand by …

Romans 12:3 For I say, through the grace given to me, to every man that is among …

1 Corinthians 4:8-10 Now you are full, now you are rich, you have reigned as kings without …

have need.

Deuteronomy 8:12-14 Lest when you have eaten and are full, and have built goodly houses, …

Proverbs 30:9 Lest I be full, and deny you, and say, Who is the LORD? or lest I …

Jeremiah 2:31 O generation, see you the word of the LORD. Have I been a wilderness …

Matthew 9:12 But when Jesus heard that, he said to them, They that be whole need …

knowest.

Romans 2:17-23 Behold, you are called a Jew, and rest in the law, and make your boast of God…

wretched.

Matthew 5:3 Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

Romans 7:24 O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?

blind.

Isaiah 42:19 Who is blind, but my servant? or deaf, as my messenger that I sent? …

John 9:40,41 And some of the Pharisees which were with him heard these words, …

2 Peter 1:9 But he that lacks these things is blind, and cannot see afar off, …

naked.

Revelation 16:15 Behold, I come as a thief. Blessed is he that watches, and keeps …

Genesis 3:7,10,11 And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were …

Exodus 32:35 And the LORD plagued the people, because they made the calf, which Aaron made.

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