Revelation 7:4
Verse (Click for Chapter)
New International Version
Then I heard the number of those who were sealed: 144,000 from all the tribes of Israel.

New Living Translation
And I heard how many were marked with the seal of God--144,000 were sealed from all the tribes of Israel:

English Standard Version
And I heard the number of the sealed, 144,000, sealed from every tribe of the sons of Israel:

Berean Study Bible
And I heard the number of those who were sealed, one hundred forty-four thousand from all the tribes of Israel:

Berean Literal Bible
And I heard the number of those having been sealed, one hundred forty-four thousand, having been sealed out of every tribe of the sons of Israel:

New American Standard Bible
And I heard the number of those who were sealed, one hundred and forty-four thousand sealed from every tribe of the sons of Israel:

King James Bible
And I heard the number of them which were sealed: and there were sealed an hundred and forty and four thousand of all the tribes of the children of Israel.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
And I heard the number of those who were sealed: 144,000 sealed from every tribe of the Israelites:

International Standard Version
I heard the number of those who were sealed: 144,000. Those who were sealed were from every tribe of Israel:

NET Bible
Now I heard the number of those who were marked with the seal, one hundred and forty-four thousand, sealed from all the tribes of the people of Israel:

New Heart English Bible
I heard the number of those who were sealed, one hundred forty-four thousand, sealed out of every tribe of the children of Israel:

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
And I heard the number who were sealed - 144,000, from all the tribes of Israel:

GOD'S WORD® Translation
I heard how many were sealed: 144,000. Those who were sealed were from every tribe of the people of Israel:

New American Standard 1977
And I heard the number of those who were sealed, one hundred and forty-four thousand sealed from every tribe of the sons of Israel:

Jubilee Bible 2000
And I heard the number of those that were sealed: and there were sealed a hundred and forty-four thousand of all the tribes of the sons of Israel.

King James 2000 Bible
And I heard the number of them who were sealed: and there were sealed a hundred and forty and four thousand of all the tribes of the children of Israel.

American King James Version
And I heard the number of them which were sealed: and there were sealed an hundred and forty and four thousand of all the tribes of the children of Israel.

American Standard Version
And I heard the number of them that were sealed, a hundred and forty and four thousand, sealed out of every tribe of the children of Israel:

Douay-Rheims Bible
And I heard the number of them that were signed, an hundred forty-four thousand were signed, of every tribe of the children of Israel.

Darby Bible Translation
And I heard the number of the sealed, a hundred [and] forty-four thousand, sealed out of every tribe of [the] sons of Israel:

English Revised Version
And I heard the number of them which were sealed, a hundred and forty and four thousand, sealed out of every tribe of the children of Israel.

Webster's Bible Translation
And I heard the number of them who were sealed: and there were sealed a hundred and forty four thousand of all the tribes of the children of Israel.

Weymouth New Testament
When the sealing was finished, I heard how many were sealed out of the tribes of the descendants of Israel. They were 144,000.

World English Bible
I heard the number of those who were sealed, one hundred forty-four thousand, sealed out of every tribe of the children of Israel:

Young's Literal Translation
And I heard the number of those sealed, (one hundred and forty four thousands were sealed out of all the tribes of the sons of Israel):
Study Bible
144,000 Sealed
3“Do not harm the land or sea or trees until we have sealed the foreheads of the servants of our God.” 4And I heard the number of those who were sealed, one hundred forty-four thousand from all the tribes of Israel: 5From the tribe of Judah twelve thousand were sealed, from the tribe of Reuben twelve thousand, from the tribe of Gad twelve thousand,…
Cross References
Exodus 28:21
"The stones shall be according to the names of the sons of Israel: twelve, according to their names; they shall be like the engravings of a seal, each according to his name for the twelve tribes.

Revelation 7:5
From the tribe of Judah twelve thousand were sealed, from the tribe of Reuben twelve thousand, from the tribe of Gad twelve thousand,

Revelation 9:16
And the number of mounted troops was two hundred million; I heard their number.

Revelation 14:1
Then I looked and saw the Lamb standing on Mount Zion, and with Him one hundred forty-four thousand who had His name and His Father's name written on their foreheads.

Revelation 14:3
And they sang a new song before the throne and before the four living creatures and the elders. And no one could learn the song except the one hundred forty-four thousand who had been redeemed from the earth.
Treasury of Scripture

And I heard the number of them which were sealed: and there were sealed an hundred and forty and four thousand of all the tribes of the children of Israel.

I heard.

Revelation 9:16 And the number of the army of the horsemen were two hundred thousand …

an.

Revelation 14:1,3 And I looked, and, see, a Lamb stood on the mount Sion, and with …

Genesis 15:5 And he brought him forth abroad, and said, Look now toward heaven, …

Romans 9:27 Esaias also cries concerning Israel, Though the number of the children …

Romans 11:5,6 Even so then at this present time also there is a remnant according …

all.

Ezekiel 47:13 Thus said the Lord GOD; This shall be the border, whereby you shall …

Ezekiel 48:19,31 And they that serve the city shall serve it out of all the tribes of Israel…

Zechariah 9:1 The burden of the word of the LORD in the land of Hadrach, and Damascus …

Matthew 19:28 And Jesus said to them, Truly I say to you, That you which have followed me…

Luke 22:30 That you may eat and drink at my table in my kingdom, and sit on …

Acts 26:7 To which promise our twelve tribes, instantly serving God day and …

James 1:1 James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, to the twelve …

(4) And I heard the number of them . . . Translate, And I heard the number of the sealed: there were a hundred and forty and four thousand sealed out of every tribe of the sons of Israel. There are two or three questions which these verses suggest. What are we to understand by the number twelve thousand from each tribe? Who are these who are drawn from the tribes of Israel? Why is there a change of the order and name of the tribes? It may help us to clearer thoughts to take the second of these questions first. (1) Who are these one hundred and forty-four thousand? An answer to this has been partly anticipated in our previous comments; but perhaps a fuller consideration is needed. Some have thought that the sealed ones must be Jewish Christians: i.e., they are disposed to take the twelve tribes literally. The scope of the previous verses seems decisive against this view. The time of judgment and trial is drawing near; we have seen the tokens of the coming storm in the opening of the sixth seal; our wish is to know the lot of the saints of God; this chapter answers this wish: they are safe, having the seal of God. Now, to limit the answer to the Israelitish Christians is to break in abruptly upon the general flow of thought with a bold literalism. The sealed ones are explained to be the servants of God; the description which follows proclaims them to be the "Israel of God." It would be a strange leap away from the subject to introduce a sudden limitation of thought. Nor is there any necessity for doing so. Israelitish and Jewish names are freely adopted by the sacred writers, and used in a spiritual sense without any explanation of such usage; and the Apostle most emphatically laid down the principle that "he is not a Jew which is one outwardly, neither is that circumcision which is outward in the flesh, but he is a Jew which is one inwardly, and circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit and not in the letter" (Romans 2:28-29); and the principle he applies by affirming that in Christ "there is neither Jew nor Greek" (Galatians 3:28). The Christian Church absorbs the Jewish, inherits her privileges, and adopts, with wider and nobler meaning, her phraseology. She has her Jerusalem, but it is a heavenly Jerusalem (Hebrews 12:22): a Jerusalem from above (Galatians 4:26): a new Jerusalem (Revelation 21:2; see Revelation 3:12); and to that Jerusalem of God the true Israel of God, the chosen generation and royal priesthood of every age, turn the eye of faith. It is needless to say that this view does not rob, as it has been said, the Jew of God's promises; it only intensifies those promises by showing the growth of that Church in which the Jew may yet find the truest consummation of his holiest and highest hopes, and into which God is yet able to graft them in again (Romans 11:23; Romans 11:25-26), and in which he may yet play a part loftier than men dream of. (2) How are we to understand the numbers? As we cannot adopt the literal interpretation of the tribes of Israel, still less can we admit a literal interpretation of the numbers here mentioned; but they are not on this ground to be looked upon as meaningless numbers: there is an appropriate symbolism in the numbers of the Apocalypse. Twelve is used as the number of those who in every age have been called out to witness for some truth which the world needed. Thus the twelve tribes of Israel were the appointed witnesses of a pure theology and a pure morality in the days of idolatry and license; and later, the twelve Apostles became the inheritors of a similar, though higher, spiritual work in the world. The number twelve, then, stands for a world-witness of divine truth; and the fruits of this world-witness is a wide and sustained success: the twelve multiplied by the twelve a thousand-fold--"the native and not degenerate progeny of the Apostles apostolically multiplied" (Mede, quoted by Dr. Currey). The skeleton organisation is twelve, the college of the Apostles; the one hundred and forty-four thousand represent the growth into full numbers of the choice ones of God. (3) Does the change in the order and names of the tribes symbolise anything? The alterations are not without significance. They are briefly these: The tribe of Dan is omitted, and the name of Ephraim does not appear, but the number is made up to twelve by two representatives of Joseph: Manasseh, who stands sixth in order, and Joseph (superseding the name, but representing the tribe of Ephraim), who is placed eleventh on the list. The number twelve is maintained to show that in all changes God's purposes stand. The omission of one tribe and the changed name of another are designed to show that in the Church, as in Israel, the most splendid opportunities may be lost. Dan, once a tribe, and not an insignificant tribe, which had reared its heroes, gradually lapsed into idolatry and immorality, dwindled in numbers and importance, and at length disappeared, and as a tribe became extinct. Its omission in this list is a silent but emphatic comment on the sacred warnings: "Let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall." "Begin not to say we have Abraham to our father: God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham." Similarly, Ephraim, as has been suggested by a thoughtful writer, who exalted himself in Israel, is now lost in the greater name of Joseph. (Comp. Hosea 13:1; Hosea 10:11; Luke 18:14.) The order of the names is altered. Reuben no longer stands first: Judah has taken the firstborn's place; and Levi, though named, does not occupy the third, the place of his birthright, but the eighth place. Here, again, the changes have their teachings. The unstable Reuben, with all his splendid advantages--the firstborn, the excellency of dignity and the excellency of power--failed to hold his own among his brethren; the fatal instability of his character accompanied his history, and weakened his otherwise pre-eminent powers; yet weak and erring, the type of the brilliant and vacillating, he is not an outcast altogether, but finds place, and high place, among the servants of God. Judah, lion-like, resolute, and strong, wins the foremost place; from him springs the true Ruler, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, to unfold the counsels of God, and to rule the world with a righteous sceptre. Levi's subordinate position is thought to be due to the fact that the Mosaic ritual and Levitical priesthood are at an end. This may be so; the changes are the result of the actual history of the tribes, and illustrate how in the Christian Church, as in the Jewish, privileges may be lost, opportunities seized or cast away, offices and functions used for a time, and then laid aside when their work is accomplished; but in all and through all changes, God's unchanging purpose runs onward to its certain close. The grouping of the tribes is, as has been pointed out, in the order of closest kinship: "We find not one violent separation of those who are naturally united, where both are truly members of the Israel of God" (Rev. C. H. Waller, Names on Gates of Pearl).

Verse 4. - And I heard the number of them which were sealed. The description of the actual operation of sealing is omitted (cf. Ezekiel 9, where it is also omitted). And there were sealed an hundred and forty and four thousand. Omit "and there were." This number - the square of 12 multiplied by 1000 - is typical of a large and perfect number. No one has ever said that the number should be taken literally; and there are evident reasons why it could not be so intended. We have, therefore, to inquire what is its symbolical signification. The number 12 is always typical, in the Apocalypse and elsewhere, of a complete and perfect number. It is formed of 4 multiplied by 3. Four is generally representative of the created universe, and 3 of the Godhead (see Revelation 5:9). 4 plus 3, that is 7; and 4 multiplied by 3, that is 12, indicate a perfect number - a number which includes and embraces everything. And thus 12 multiplied by 12 denotes the most exhaustive and perfect completion. The number 1000 is generally used to denote a large and complete, but somewhat uncertain, number (cf. Revelation 14:1; Revelation 20:2; Revelation 21:16, etc.). Thus the square of 12 multiplied by 1000 has the signification of a large number not definitely fixed, but nevertheless perfect; that is to say, not omitting a single one of those who should be included in the number. We are therefore taught that at the judgment day, before the destruction of the world is allowed to take place, a large number, consisting of those who have proved themselves to be God's servants, will be preserved and set apart; and that, although the number may be large, yet it will be perfect, not one of those who are worthy to be selected being overlooked or forgotten. This number subsequently is increased, being included in the "great multitude which no man could number" of ver. 9, and which is formed by the whole company of the redeemed. Of all the tribes of the children of Israel. The Authorized Version here appears to give the correct sense of πᾶς, "every." The number is made up not necessarily by an equal number from each tribe, but by a number from the twelve tribes viewed as a whole. As explained above, the number one thousand, though signifying "completeness," is not a definite number. Here, as elsewhere, it is the spiritual Israel which is signified. In support of this view, we may remark:

(1) The constant use in the Apocalypse of the terms" Israel," "Jew," "Jerusalem," etc., in the spiritual sense; and it seems scarcely credible that the writer of the book, who throughout insists on the fulfilment in the Christian religion of all things Jewish, should in this place, for no apparent reason, deliberately make a distinction between Jew and Gentile. The terms are constantly used to denote the spiritual Israel, the spiritual Jerusalem, etc., except where allusion is made to some historical fact, as in Revelation 2:14; Revelation 5:5; Revelation 22:16; Revelation 15:3 (cf. Jews, Revelation 2:9 and Revelation 3:9; Israel, Revelation 21:12; Jerusalem, Revelation 3:12 and Revelation 21:2, 10; Babylon, Revelation 14:8; Revelation 16:19; Revelation 17:5; Revelation 18:2, 10, 21; Sodom and Egypt, Revelation 11:8; Euphrates, Revelation 9:14; Revelation 16:12; Sion, Revelation 14:1; Jezebel, Revelation 2:20; David, Revelation 3:7; Gentiles, Revelation 11:2).

(2) The improbability of the omission of the tribe of Dan, if the literal Israel were meant.

(3) The general testimony of ancient commentators, which is the view of those who appointed this passage for use in the Liturgy on All Saints' Day. Some, however, have considered that the hundred and forty-four thousand are distinct from, and not included in, the multitude of ver. 9. They believe the former indicates the converted from among the Jews, and the latter those saved from the Gentiles. Thus Bengel, Dusterdieck, Ebrard, Grotius, etc. But it may be remembered that in Revelation 14:3, 4, the hundred and forty-four thousand redeemed from the earth and from among men is not confined to Jews. By other commentators the number has been thought to denote converts in the age of Constantine, etc. And I heard the number of them which were sealed,.... And therefore could be sure of the exact number, which did not depend upon his sight, and telling them, in which some mistake might have been made, but he heard the number expressed:

and there were sealed an hundred and forty, and four thousand: which is a square number arising from twelve, the square root of it, being just twelve times twelve thousand; and may denote their being the true and genuine offspring of the twelve apostles of the Lamb, holding their doctrine, and being built on their foundation; see Revelation 21:14; and these were

of all the tribes of the children of Israel; not that these were all Jews in a literal sense, for the time of their conversion in great numbers is not yet come. Dr. Goodwin thinks these sealed ones design the believers of the Greek and Armenian churches, and his reasons are not despicable; but this is to limit and restrain them to a particular part of the church of Christ; whereas they take in all the saints within this long tract of time, even all that are the true Israel of God, who are Jews inwardly, of what nation, kindred, tongue, and people soever; and is a certain and determinate number for an uncertain and indeterminate one; and only intends a large number of persons known to God and Christ; see the Apocrypha:

"Arise up and stand, behold the number of those that be sealed in the feast of the Lord;'' (2 Esdras 2:38) 4. Twelve is the number of the tribes, and appropriate to the Church: three by four: three, the divine number, multiplied by four, the number for world-wide extension. Twelve by twelve implies fixity and completeness, which is taken a thousandfold in 144,000. A thousand implies the world perfectly pervaded by the divine; for it is ten, the world number, raised to the power of three, the number of God.

of all the tribes—literally, "out of every tribe"; not 144,000 of each tribe, but the aggregate of the twelve thousand from every tribe.

children—Greek, "sons of Israel." Re 3:12; 21:12, are no objection, as Alford thinks, to the literal Israel being meant; for, in consummated glory, still the Church will be that "built on the foundation of the (Twelve) apostles (Israelites), Jesus Christ (an Israelite) being the chief corner-stone." Gentile believers shall have the name of Jerusalem written on them, in that they shall share the citizenship antitypical to that of the literal Jerusalem.7:1-8 In the figurative language of Scripture, the blowing of the four winds together, means a dreadful and general destruction. But the destruction is delayed. Seals were used to mark for each person his own possessions. This mark is the witness of the Holy Ghost, printed in the hearts of believers. And the Lord would not suffer his people to be afflicted before they were marked, that they might be prepared against all conflicts. And, observe, of those who are thus sealed by the Spirit, the seal must be on the forehead, plainly to be seen alike by friends and foes, but not by the believer himself, except as he looks stedfastly in the glass of God's word. The number of those who were sealed, may be understood to stand for the remnant of people which God reserved. Though the church of God is but a little flock, in comparison with the wicked world, yet it is a society really large, and to be still more enlarged. Here the universal church is figured under the type of Israel.
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Alphabetical: 144000 And every forty-four from heard hundred I Israel number of one sealed sons the Then those thousand tribe tribes were who

NT Prophecy: Revelation 7:4 I heard the number of those who (Rev. Re Apocalypse) Christian Bible Study Resources, Dictionary, Concordance and Search Tools
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