Revelation 3:18
Parallel Verses
New International Version
I counsel you to buy from me gold refined in the fire, so you can become rich; and white clothes to wear, so you can cover your shameful nakedness; and salve to put on your eyes, so you can see.

New Living Translation
So I advise you to buy gold from me--gold that has been purified by fire. Then you will be rich. Also buy white garments from me so you will not be shamed by your nakedness, and ointment for your eyes so you will be able to see.

English Standard Version
I counsel you to buy from me gold refined by fire, so that you may be rich, and white garments so that you may clothe yourself and the shame of your nakedness may not be seen, and salve to anoint your eyes, so that you may see.

New American Standard Bible
I 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.

King James Bible
I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
I advise you to buy from Me gold refined in the fire so that you may be rich, white clothes so that you may be dressed and your shameful nakedness not be exposed, and ointment to spread on your eyes so that you may see.

International Standard Version
Therefore, I advise you to buy from me gold purified in fire so you may be rich, white clothes to wear so your shameful nakedness won't show, and ointment to put on your eyes so you may see.

NET Bible
take my advice and buy gold from me refined by fire so you can become rich! Buy from me white clothing so you can be clothed and your shameful nakedness will not be exposed, and buy eye salve to put on your eyes so you can see!

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
“I counsel you to buy gold from me, proved by fire, that you may prosper, and white garments to put on, lest the shame of your nakedness be revealed, and eye salve to apply that you may see.”

GOD'S WORD® Translation
I advise you: Buy gold purified in fire from me so that you may be rich. Buy white clothes from me. Wear them so that you may keep your shameful, naked body from showing. Buy ointment to put on your eyes so that you may see.

Jubilee Bible 2000
I counsel thee to buy of me gold refined in the fire, that thou may be made rich; and clothed in white raiment, so that the shame of thy nakedness not be uncovered; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou may see.

King James 2000 Bible
I counsel you to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that you may be rich; and white clothing, that you may be clothed, and that the shame of your nakedness does not appear; and anoint your eyes with eye salve, that you may see.

American King James Version
I counsel you to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that you may be rich; and white raiment, that you may be clothed, and that the shame of your nakedness do not appear; and anoint your eyes with eye salve, that you may see.

American Standard Version
I counsel thee to buy of me gold refined by fire, that thou mayest become rich; and white garments, that thou mayest clothe thyself, and that the shame of thy nakedness be not made manifest; and eyesalve to anoint thine eyes, that thou mayest see.

Douay-Rheims Bible
I counsel thee to buy of me gold fire tried, that thou mayest be made rich; and mayest be clothed in white garments, and that the shame of thy nakedness may not appear; and anoint thy eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see.

Darby Bible Translation
I counsel thee to buy of me gold purified by fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white garments, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness may not be made manifest; and eye-salve to anoint thine eyes, that thou mayest see.

English Revised Version
I counsel thee to buy of me gold refined by fire, that thou mayest become rich; and white garments, that thou mayest clothe thyself, and that the shame of thy nakedness be not made manifest; and eyesalve to anoint thine eyes, that thou mayest see.

Webster's Bible Translation
I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness may not appear; and anoint thy eyes with eye-salve, that thou mayest see.

Weymouth New Testament
Therefore I counsel you to buy of Me gold refined in the fire that you may become rich, and white robes to put on, so as to hide your shameful nakedness, and eye-salve to anoint your eyes with, so that you may be able to see.

World English Bible
I counsel you to buy from me gold refined by fire, that you may become rich; and white garments, that you may clothe yourself, and that the shame of your nakedness may not be revealed; and eye salve to anoint your eyes, that you may see.

Young's Literal Translation
I counsel thee to buy from me gold fired by fire, that thou mayest be rich, and white garments that thou mayest be arrayed, and the shame of thy nakedness may not be manifest, and with eye-salve anoint thine eyes, that thou mayest see.
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 18. - I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; gold refined by the fire (Revised Version). It is doubtful whether ver. 17 should be connected with ver. 18 or with ver. 16 - whether the self-satisfied condition of the Church is given as the reason why "I will spue thee out of my mouth," or as the reason why "I counsel thee to buy of me." The Revised Version follows the Authorized Version in connecting yore. 17 and 18; and this view is supported by Alford, Bengel, Dusterdieck, Ebrard. But Trench prefers the other view. The Authorized Version seems correct, for the reason why "I will spue thee" is given in ver. 16, and another separate reason would probably (though not certainly) not be added. Though St. Paul (Colossians 2:3) had pointed out to the Laodiceans (see on the epistle generally, vers. 14-22; and el. Colossians 4:16) where "are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge," they had not heeded the lesson, and now Christ once more counsels them to obtain true riches from the proper source. They are to buy from me; the emphasis being laid on me, in contradistinction to their trust in themselves. They are poor (ver. 17), and must therefore obtain gold refined by the fire - gold superior to that on the possession of which they so prided themselves, that they may indeed be rich. To buy this gold by giving something of equal value in exchange, they were truly unable. Yet it was to be bought, and would entail the sacrifice of something which, though perhaps dear to them, would be nothing in comparison with the return they would obtain. Note the Revised Version rendering may become rich, repeating and enforcing the fact of their present destitution. And white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed. Laodicea is said to have been famous for the raven blackness of the wool which was prepared and dyed there. This, perhaps, explains the point of the reproof contained in these words. "Notwithstanding thy trust in the excellence of the apparel for which thou aft famous, thou art yet naked (ver. 17), and needest clothing; that clothing can be obtained only from me, and is far superior to that of which thou boastest, since it is white, the emblem of all that is purest and best; not black, like your own, which is a type of darkness, the darkness of ignorance and sin. Mine is indeed the garment of righteousness, the marriage garment with which thou mayest enter the presence of thy King." And that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear. The nakedness will certainly be made apparent at some time. If it be persistently overlooked or ignored now, it will be made more glaring in the future, when God turns upon it the brightness of his presence. In the Revised Version "appear" is even more emphatically rendered "be made manifest" (φανερωθῇ). "Stripping," in the Bible, is commonly used to denote putting to shame: Hanun cut off the garments of David's servants (2 Samuel 10:4); the King of Assyria was to lead away the Egyptians naked and barefoot (Isaiah 20:4; see also Revelation 16:15); while supplying with clothes, or an additional quantity of clothes, was intended to show honour: thus Pharaoh arrayed Joseph in vestures of fine linen (Genesis 41:42); Joseph gave Benjamin five changes of raiment (Genesis 45:22; see also Esther 6:9; Ezekiel 16:10; Daniel 5:29; Zechariah 3:4; Luke 15:22). And anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see. This is, of course, a reference in the "blindness" of ver. 17, of which the Laodiceans were ignorant. "Eyesalve" is κολλούριον ( ξολλψριυμ, perhaps so called because made up in the shape of a cake of bread - collyra. We cannot but think, in connexion with this passage, of the miracle of the healing of the blind man by the anointing of his eyes by our Lord - a miracle witnessed and related by St. John (John 9.). The subsequent incidents and discourse, too, forcibly illustrate the state of the Laodiceans, so much like that of the Pharisees, to whom were addressed the words, "If ye were blind, ye should have no sin; but now ye say, We see; therefore your sin remaineth" (see on ver. 15).

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

I counsel thee,.... Christ is a Counsellor, and is every way fit to be one, for he is the all wise God, the Ancient of days, and the Father of his people, and, as Mediator, the Wisdom of God; and he was concerned in the council of peace from everlasting; and when he was here on earth he gave counsel in person, and now he gives it by his Spirit, and by his word and ministers; and the substance of it is, to come to him for grace, life, and salvation; for pardon, peace, and righteousness; for spiritual light and knowledge, and every supply of grace; and his advice is always wholesome, good, and suitable, is hearty, sincere, and faithful, and is freely given, and is wise and prudent; and, being taken, infallibly succeeds; the counsel here given follows:

to buy of me gold tried in the fire; by which is meant either a more pure and glorious state of the church, such as was in the former period, or greater; or a larger measure of light and knowledge in the Gospel, which is better than fine gold; or some particular graces, and a comfortable exercise of them, as fervent love and strong faith, which is much more precious than gold; or rather, all spiritual riches in general, which are in Christ, and are unsearchable, solid, substantial and satisfying; are lasting and durable, precious, excellent, and incorruptible: and the buying of this gold is not to be understood in a proper sense, by giving a valuable consideration for it, for no such is to be given, but in an improper sense; it is a buying without money and without price; Christ and his grace are given freely; Christ of whom it is to be had and of him only, does not sell it, but he gives it to those that come to him for it, and desire to have it, and are willing to part with all, so they may but enjoy it; for that it is to be understood in such a sense, is clear from the character of the persons who are advised to buy, who were poor, or beggars, Revelation 3:17; the end of it is,

that thou mayest be rich; for though this church was rich, yet not in spirituals; and though she was rich in her own conceit, yet not really so: persons are not to be accounted truly rich who have only this world's goods; none are rich but those who have an interest in Christ and his grace; and they who are poor in this world, and yet have grace, are really rich: the next thing advised to is,

and white raiment; that is, and buy white raiment, by which some understand the heavenly glory, robes of immortality, a being clothed upon with the house which is from heaven; this may be compared to raiment, for it is a glory, an immortality, an incorruption to be put on; and fitly enough to white raiment, for the purity and spotlessness of it; and being clothed with this, no nakedness, or shame of it will appear; and this is to be had from Christ, and in the same way as gold is to be bought of him; the design of this advice may be to quicken the desires of the church after heavenly things; though it rather seems to respect something suitable to her in this present state: wherefore others think that by it are meant good works, holiness of life and conversation; but these are never called white raiment, but even rags, yea, filthy ones, in the best; and whatever cover they may be from nakedness in the sight of men, they are no cover from it in the sight of God, nor do they preserve from shame and blushing: rather then by it is meant the righteousness of Christ, which may be compared to raiment; it is upon the saints, and is put upon them as such; it covers as a garment does, protects from injuries, keeps warm, beautifies and adorns, as raiment does; and it may be compared to white raiment for its purity and perfection; now this is to be bought of Christ, it is to be had of him, and is to be had of him freely, without money and without price; it is a free gift of grace; and even faith itself, which receives it, is the gift of God: the ends of giving this advice are,

that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; the soul may be naked when the body is well clothed; and notwithstanding a man's moral righteousness, he may not be clothed; they, and they only are clothed, who have on the righteousness of Christ; nakedness arises from want of, righteousness, which is only covered by the righteousness of Christ; and from hence also springs shame, which Christ's righteousness hides:

and anoint thine eyes with eye salve; by which may be meant the word of God, particularly the Gospel; and anointing with it is making use of it for the gaining of light and knowledge: all without this divine revelation are in darkness, and such who reject the authority of it go astray; the Scriptures are the only directory, and rule of faith and practice; the law is a means of enlightening persons to see their sin and misery, and the danger they are in; and the Gospel is a light, whereby is beheld the glory of Christ, of his person and office, of his grace and righteousness, and of salvation by him; and this is the Gospel of Christ, and is to be had of him freely, even the saving knowledge of it. The Jews have adopted the very Greek word here used into their language, and apply it to the law; says R. Chija (e), speaking of the law,

"Nyel tyrwlyq, "it is a salve for the eye", a plaster for a wound, &c. it is a salve for the eyes, as is written Psalm 19:8.

or else the illumination of the Spirit is meant, by which the eyes of the understanding being enlightened, men see themselves, the impurity of their hearts and nature, the imperfection of their righteousness, their impotency to all that is spiritually good, and that they are lost and undone in themselves; and by which they see Christ and salvation by him, that it is in him, and in no other, and that it is full and suitable, and for the chief of sinners, and that it is all of free grace, and that they have an interest in it; by this they have light into the doctrines of the Gospel, and have some glimpse of the glories of another world; and this is to be had of Christ, who gives his Spirit freely, and an understanding to know spiritual things: and the end of the advice is,

that thou mayest see; who, notwithstanding the conceit she had of herself, was blind; persons may have much human prudence, much knowledge in things moral, yea, in things evangelical, notionally, and yet be blind as to true spiritual light and experience; they only see spiritually and savingly who have the Spirit of God,

(e) Yalkut Simeoni, par. 2. fol. 96. 3. Debarim Rabba, sect. 8. fol. 243. 3. & Vajikra Rabba, sect. 12. fol. 155. 3.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

18. Gentle and loving irony. Take My advice, thou who fanciest thyself in need of nothing. Not only art thou not in need of nothing, but art in need of the commonest necessaries of existence. He graciously stoops to their modes of thought and speech: Thou art a people ready to listen to any counsel as to how to buy to advantage; then, listen to My counsel (for I am "Counsellor," Isa 9:6), buy of Me" (in whom, according to Paul's Epistle written to the neighboring Colosse and intended for the Laodicean Church also, Col 2:1, 3; 4:16, are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge). "Buy" does not imply that we can, by any work or merit of ours, purchase God's free gift; nay the very purchase money consists in the renunciation of all self-righteousness, such as Laodicea had (Re 3:17). "Buy" at the cost of thine own self-sufficiency (so Paul, Php 3:7, 8); and the giving up of all things, however dear to us, that would prevent our receiving Christ's salvation as a free gift, for example, self and worldly desires. Compare Isa 55:1, "Buy … without money and price."

of me—the source of "unsearchable riches" (Eph 3:8). Laodicea was a city of extensive money transactions [Cicero].

gold tried in, &c.—literally, "fired (and fresh) from the fire," that is, just fresh from the furnace which has proved its purity, and retaining its bright gloss. Sterling spiritual wealth, as contrasted with its counterfeit, in which Laodicea boasted itself. Having bought this gold she will be no longer poor (Re 3:17).

mayest be rich—Greek, "mayest be enriched."

white raiment—"garments." Laodicea's wools were famous. Christ offers infinitely whiter raiment. As "gold tried in the fire" expresses faith tested by fiery trials: so "white raiment," Christ's righteousness imputed to the believer in justification and imparted in sanctification.

appear—Greek, "be manifested," namely, at the last day, when everyone without the wedding garment shall be discovered. To strip one, is in the East the image of putting to open shame. So also to clothe one with fine apparel is the image of doing him honor. Man can discover his shame, God alone can cover it, so that his nakedness shall not be manifested at last (Col 3:10-14). Blessed is he whose sin is so covered. The hypocrite's shame may be manifested now; it must be so at last.

anoint … with eye-salve—The oldest manuscripts read, "(buy of Me) eye-salve (collyrium, a roll of ointment), to anoint thine eyes." Christ has for Laodicea an ointment far more precious than all the costly unguents of the East. The eye is here the conscience or inner light of the mind. According as it is sound and "single" (Greek, "haplous," "simple"), or otherwise, the man sees aright spiritually, or does not. The Holy Spirit's unction, like the ancient eye-salve's, first smarts with conviction of sin, then heals. He opens our eyes first to ourselves in our wretchedness, then to the Saviour in His preciousness. Trench notices that the most sunken churches of the seven, namely, Sardis and Laodicea, are the ones in which alone are specified no opponents from without, nor heresies from within. The Church owes much to God's overruling Providence which has made so often internal and external foes, in spite of themselves, to promote His cause by calling forth her energies in contending for the faith once delivered to the saints. Peace is dearly bought at the cost of spiritual stagnation, where there is not interest enough felt in religion to contend about it at all.

Revelation 3:18 Additional Commentaries
Context
Message to the Church in Laodicea
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. 19'Those whom I love, I reprove and discipline; therefore be zealous and repent.…
Cross References
Isaiah 55:1
"Come, all you who are thirsty, come to the waters; and you who have no money, come, buy and eat! Come, buy wine and milk without money and without cost.

Matthew 13:44
"The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field. When a man found it, he hid it again, and then in his joy went and sold all he had and bought that field.

1 Peter 1:7
These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith--of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire--may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed.

Revelation 3:4
Yet you have a few people in Sardis who have not soiled their clothes. They will walk with me, dressed in white, for they are worthy.

Revelation 4:4
Surrounding the throne were twenty-four other thrones, and seated on them were twenty-four elders. They were dressed in white and had crowns of gold on their heads.

Revelation 16:15
"Look, I come like a thief! Blessed is the one who stays awake and remains clothed, so as not to go naked and be shamefully exposed."
Treasury of Scripture

I counsel you to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that you may be rich; and white raiment, that you may be clothed, and that the shame of your nakedness do not appear; and anoint your eyes with eye salve, that you may see.

counsel.

Psalm 16:7 I will bless the LORD, who has given me counsel: my reins also instruct …

Psalm 32:8 I will instruct you and teach you in the way which you shall go: …

Psalm 73:24 You shall guide me with your counsel, and afterward receive me to glory.

Psalm 107:11 Because they rebelled against the words of God, and contemned the …

Proverbs 1:25,30 But you have set at nothing all my counsel, and would none of my reproof…

Proverbs 19:20 Hear counsel, and receive instruction, that you may be wise in your latter end.

Ecclesiastes 8:2 I counsel you to keep the king's commandment, and that in regard …

buy.

Proverbs 23:23 Buy the truth, and sell it not; also wisdom, and instruction, and understanding.

Isaiah 55:1 Ho, every one that thirsts, come you to the waters, and he that has …

Matthew 13:44 Again, the kingdom of heaven is like to treasure hid in a field; …

Matthew 25:9 But the wise answered, saying, Not so; lest there be not enough for …

gold.

Malachi 3:3 And he shall sit as a refiner and purifier of silver: and he shall …

1 Corinthians 3:12,13 Now if any man build on this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, …

1 Peter 1:7 That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold …

that thou.

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

Luke 12:21 So is he that lays up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God.

2 Corinthians 8:9 For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though he …

1 Timothy 6:18 That they do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to distribute, …

James 2:5 Listen, my beloved brothers, Has not God chosen the poor of this …

white.

Revelation 3:4,5 You have a few names even in Sardis which have not defiled their …

Revelation 7:13 And one of the elders answered, saying to me, What are these which …

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

Revelation 19:8 And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, …

2 Corinthians 5:3 If so be that being clothed we shall not be found naked.

the shame.

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

Isaiah 47:3 Your nakedness shall be uncovered, yes, your shame shall be seen: …

Jeremiah 13:26 Therefore will I discover your skirts on your face, that your shame may appear.

Daniel 12:2 And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, …

Micah 1:11 Pass you away, you inhabitant of Saphir, having your shame naked: …

Nahum 3:5 Behold, I am against you, said the LORD of hosts; and I will discover …

anoint.

John 9:6-11 When he had thus spoken, he spat on the ground, and made clay of …

1 John 2:20-27 But you have an unction from the Holy One, and you know all things…

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