Revelation 13:8
And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.
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(8) And all that dwell . . .—Better, And all they that dwell on the earth shall worship him (every one) whose name has not been written in the book of life of the Lamb that has been slain from the foundation of the world. This is the climax of his triumph: he, or it, is worshipped; but the saints, though conquered, conquer; they do not worship after the fashion of the deluded or self-seeking. A stronger tie binds them to a better allegiance; their names are in the Lamb’s Book of Life. There is some doubt about the connection of the words “from the foundation of the world.” Some connect them with the word “written”: this would express that the names were written “from the foundation of the world” in the book. Others connect them with the word “slain”: this expresses that the Lamb was slain from the foundation of the world. For the former view, the similar passage in Revelation 17:8 is cited; but, on the other hand, the phrase “from the foundation of the world” is connected in other parts of the Bible with certain aspects of the work of Christ (1Peter 1:19-20, and John 17:24), and it seems more natural to take the words in their simple order. Whatever view we take, the verse proclaims that the security of God’s saints is based on the eternal love of God. “An eternal deliverer is the only refuge from this great world-tyranny; “the strength of the tempted is in Him who is the same in love and righteousness through all the ages.

13:1-10 The apostle, standing on the shore, saw a savage beast rise out of the sea; a tyrannical, idolatrous, persecuting power, springing up out of the troubles which took place. It was a frightful monster! It appears to mean that worldly, oppressing dominion, which for many ages, even from the times of the Babylonish captivity, had been hostile to the church. The first beast then began to oppress and persecute the righteous for righteousness' sake, but they suffered most under the fourth beast of Daniel, (the Roman empire,) which has afflicted the saints with many cruel persecutions. The source of its power was the dragon. It was set up by the devil, and supported by him. The wounding the head may be the abolishing pagan idolatry; and the healing of the wound, introducing popish idolatry, the same in substance, only in a new dress, but which as effectually answers the devil's design. The world admired its power, policy and success. They paid honour and subjection to the devil and his instruments. It exercised infernal power and policy, requiring men to render that honour to creatures which belongs to God alone. Yet the devil's power and success are limited. Christ has a chosen remnant, redeemed by his blood, recorded in his book, sealed by his Spirit; and though the devil and antichrist may overcome the body, and take away the natural life, they cannot conquer the soul, nor prevail with true believers to forsake their Saviour, and join his enemies. Perseverance in the faith of the gospel and true worship of God, in this great hour of trial and temptation, which would deceive all but the elect, is the character of those registered in the book of life. This powerful motive and encouragement to constancy, is the great design of the whole Revelation.And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him - That is, as immediately stated, all whose names are not in the book of life. On the word "worship," see the notes on Revelation 13:4.

Whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb - That is, of the Lord Jesus - the Lamb of God. See the notes on Philippians 4:3. Compare the notes on John 1:29. The representation here is, that the Lord Jesus keeps a book or register, in which are recorded the names of all who shall obtain everlasting life.

Slain from the foundation of the world - See the notes on Revelation 5:6. Compare the notes on Revelation 3:5. The meaning here is, not that he was actually put to death "from the foundation of the world," but that the intention to give him for a sacrifice was formed then, and that it was so certain that it might be spoken of as actually then occurring. See Romans 4:17. The purpose was so certain, it was so constantly represented by bloody sacrifices from the earliest ages, all typifying the future Saviour, that it might be said that he was "slain from the foundation of the world." Prof. Stuart, however (Com. in loco), supposes that this phrase should be connected with the former member of the sentence, "whose names are not written, from the foundation of the world, in the life-book of the Lamb, which was slain." Either construction makes good sense; but it seems to me that what is found in our common version is the most simple and natural.

8. all that dwell upon the earth—being of earth earthy; in contrast to "them that dwell in heaven."

whose names are not written—A, B, C, Syriac, Coptic, and Andreas read singular, "(every one) whose (Greek, 'hou'; but B, Greek, 'hon,' plural) name is not written."

Lamb slain from the foundation of the world—The Greek order of words favors this translation. He was slain in the Father's eternal counsels: compare 1Pe 1:19, 20, virtually parallel. The other way of connecting the words is, "Written from the foundation of the world in the book of life of the Lamb slain." So in Re 17:8. The elect. The former is in the Greek more obvious and simple. "Whatsoever virtue was in the sacrifices, did operate through Messiah's death alone. As He was "the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world," so all atonements ever made were only effectual by His blood" [Bishop Pearson, Exposition of the Creed].

God here showed his prophet the general subjection that would be of all people to the papacy, except some few, whom he had chosen to eternal life and salvation, whom Christ had redeemed with his blood, and would preserve from this pollution.

And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him,.... The inhabitants of the Roman empire, the idolatrous part of it, the men of the world, earthly minded men; who are as they came into the world, and are of the earth, earthly, and seek only after earthly honours, pleasures, and profits; these are the admirers and adorers of the beast:

whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world; by which book is meant God's predestination of men to eternal life, or his decree of election; why this is called the "book of life"; see Gill on Revelation 3:5; and their "names being written therein from the foundation of the world", Revelation 17:8, for such a construction the words will bear, denotes that election is eternal, and is not an act of time, nor dependent upon anything done in time; and that it is of particular persons, and not of bodies of men, of nations and churches, and still less of propositions, or of persons so and so qualified, or under such conditions and circumstances; and that it is perfectly well known to God, and is sure and certain in its effects, and is unchangeable and irrevocable; for what is written in it, is written, and will always stand, not upon the foot of works, but of the sovereign grace of God; and this is called the Lamb's book; that is, Christ, who is compared to a Lamb for its harmlessness, meekness, and patience, and was typified by the lambs in the legal sacrifices; and this book is called his, because he was present at the making of it, and was concerned in putting down the names in it, John 13:18, and he himself stands first in it as the elect of God, and the head of all the elect, who, as members, were chosen in him: the act of election was made in him, and stands sure in him; and he is the author and giver of that life, which men are chosen unto both here and hereafter: and he may be said to be "slain from the foundation of the world"; in the decree and purpose of God, by which he was set forth, or foreappointed to be the propitiation for sin, and was foreordained, before the foundation of the world, to redeem his people by his blood, and in the promise of God immediately after the fall of man, that the seed of the woman should have his heel bruised, and he himself should bruise the serpent's head, which made it as sure as if it was then done; and in the sacrifices, which were immediately upon this offered up, and were types of the death and sacrifice of Christ; and in the faith of the saints, which brings distant things near, and considers them as if present; and also in his members, in Abel, and others, in whom he suffered, as he still does in his people; to which may be added, that such is the efficacy of the bloodshed and death of Christ, that it reached to all the saints from the beginning of the world, for the justification of their persons, the atonement of their sins, and cleansing from them; for the remission of sins, that are past, and for the redemption of transgressions under the first testament; for Old Testament saints from the beginning are saved by the grace of the Lord Jesus, as New Testament ones are. Something like this the Jews say (e) of the Messiah upon Genesis 49:11,

"he washed , "from the day that the world was created"; who is he? this is the King Messiah.--It is written Genesis 1:2; "and the Spirit of God", &c. This is the Spirit of the King Messiah; and from the day that the world was created; he washed his garments in wine;''

which the Jewish writers (f) understand of blood, which for its redness is like to wine; though they interpret it of the blood of the slain, with which the garments of the Messiah will be stained. Now such whose names are not written in this book of the Lamb, who have no interest in electing grace, nor in redemption by Christ, the slain Lamb of God, nor any right unto eternal life, who are reprobate persons, vessels of wrath fitted for destruction, who are foreordained to condemnation, and are given up to believe a lie, that they might be damned, these are the followers and worshippers of antichrist.

(e) Zohar in Gen. fol. 128. 2, 3.((f) Targum Jon. & Jerus. & Aben Ezra in Genesis 49.11.

And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him, {13} whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.

(13) That is, such as are not from everlasting elected in Christ Jesus. For this is that Lamb slain; Re 5:6. These words I do with Aretas, distinguish in this manner: whose names are not written from the laying of the foundation of the world, in the book of Life, of the Lamb slain. This distinction is confirmed by a similar verse in Re 17:8.

Revelation 13:8. καὶ προσκυνήσουσιν αὐτὸν, κ.τ.λ. Notwithstanding א (αὐτῷ), undoubtedly the correct reading, αὐτόν, cannot be explained by the reference to the king, of the masc. in which the beast itself, Revelation 17:11, appears personified;[3319] for that entirely special idea must be definitely indicated within ch. 13 if without any thing further it is thus to be diverted. The ΑὐΤΌΝ pertains, however, to the chief subject Ὁ ΔΡΆΚΩΝ. The worship of the dragon is here mentioned immediately after the description of the beast, for the same reason as Revelation 13:4 in connection with Revelation 13:3; the more mightily the instrument of the dragon is presented to the inhabitants of the earth, the more naturally they come to the adoration of that which itself only serves the beast. Corresponding with this is also the future form ΠΡΟΣΚΥΝΉΣΟΥΣΙΝ.[3320] As the activity of the beast, according to its decisive part, still impends,[3321] so also the adoration of the dragon occasioned thereby.

Οὖ Οὐ ΓΈΓΡΑΠΤΑΙ Τ. ὌΝ. ΑὐΤΟῦ. The sing. of the relative,[3322] to which, according to the Hebraic way, the demonstr. is added,[3323] is explained[3324] by the presentation of the details which are comprised in the entire ΚΑΤΟΙΚ. ἘΠῚ Τ. Γ.

Without doubt,[3325] the concluding clause ἈΠῸ ΚΑΤΑΒΟΛῆς ΚΌΣΜΟΥ belongs to ΓΈΓΡΑΠΤΑΙ,[3326] not to the ἘΣΦΑΓΜΈΝΟΥ, as neither the explanation of the eternal predestination of the death of Christ,[3327] nor that of the sufferings of Christ in his people from Abel on,[3328] agrees with the expression and the connection of this passage. The characteristic of the inhabitants of the earth, in contrast with the saints refusing to worship the dragon, contains already, in the most pregnant manner, all the points upon which the patience of the saints expressly emphasized immediately afterwards, Revelation 13:10, depends. Those who worship the Lamb slain, of course, must suffer persecution; but just to the Lamb slain belongs the book of life,[3329] in which from eternity the names of believers are written: they, therefore, like the Lamb, conquer by their victory,[3330] and through all ΘΛῖΨΙς pass to the glory of eternal life,[3331] while the enemy, in spite of his temporary victory,[3332] incurs sure judgment. [See Note LXXII., p. 387.]

[3319] Hengstenb.

[3320] Cf., on the other hand, Revelation 13:4.

[3321] Cf. Revelation 13:7, where it is first given the beast, on God’s part, what it is to do.

[3322] See Critical Notes.

[3323] Revelation 3:8, Revelation 12:6; Revelation 12:14.

[3324] De Wette.

[3325] Cf. Revelation 17:8.

[3326] Hammond, Beng., Heinr., Ewald, Züll., De Wette, Hengstenb.

[3327] 1 Peter 1:20; Beda, Eichh.

[3328] Cf. C. a Lap.

[3329] Revelation 3:5.

[3330] Cf. Revelation 3:21.

[3331] Cf. Revelation 7:14.

[3332] Revelation 13:7.

Revelation 13:8. Standing on the verge of this crisis (note the change to the future tense), the prophet anticipates the almost universal success of the Cæsar-cult (cf. Revelation 3:10). Only the elect will be able to resist its appeal (cf. Matthew 24:25). As in the O.T., the consciousness of predestination is made a moral lever (cf. Revelation 17:8). The rest of mankind who succumb to the cult are plainly not on the celestial burgessroll or register. cf. the instructive second-century gloss on Acts 5:39. As a rule the faithless in life are deceived (2 Thessalonians 2:2-10; Asc. Isa. iv. 7, 8), but here the Imperial cultus occupies the place of the false prophet in Mark 13:12, etc,—τοῦ ἀ. τοῦ ἐσφαγμένου, which transfers to Christ the possession of the divine register of citizens in the heavenly state, is usually taken as a scribe s gloss (after Revelation 21:27 where the position of ἀρνίου is less difficult). Elsewhere the book of life appears by itself. In any case, ἀπὸ κ. κ. goes with γέγραπται, not ἐσφαγμένου.

8. whose names] Read, whose name, the pronoun as well as the noun being singular.

the book of life of the Lamb] Revelation 21:27 : see note on Revelation 5:1.

from the foundation of the world] Perhaps in Greek, as in English, it is most natural to connect these words with “slain:” and 1 Peter 1:19-20 works out what, on this view, would be the sense. But the similar clause Revelation 17:8 seems to prove that the words are to be taken with “written:” it is God’s purpose of individual election, not of universal redemption, that is here dated “from the foundation of the world.”

Revelation 13:8. Προσκυνήσουσιν, shall worship) The verb in ordinary use, when the ceremonies about the Pope are treated of, is adoration (worship); and connected with this by derivation is a kiss, that is, of his feet, just as προσκυνεῖν, κυνεῖν, κύειν, is to kiss; whence נשק, LXX. 1 Kings 19:18, and Symmachus, Psalm 2:12, προσκυνεῖν.—ἀπὸ) ἀπὸ is here equivalent to before, as Matthew 25:34, note, and is plainly construed with οὐ γέγραπται [not as Engl. With ἐσφαγμένου], and that so easily, that it is not even to be called an instance of Hyperbaton (See Append.). All doubt is removed by a passage strictly parallel, ch. Revelation 17:8. The Apocalypse often makes mention of the Lamb slain: it never adds, from the foundation of the world; nor indeed was He slain from the foundation of the world: Hebrews 9:26. They who allege that He was thus slain in the Divine decree, in a like sense will say that He was born, raised from the dead, and ascended into heaven, from the foundation of the world.

Verse 8. - And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb; [every one] whose name hath not been written, as in the Revised Version. "Him," αὐτόν, masculine, although referring to the neuter, θηρίον, because the personality of Satan under the figure of the beast is borne in mind. "Whose name," singular, referring to the individuals of whom the πάντες, "all," are composed. This verse states in another form what has been related in the latter part of the preceding verse. Those over whom the beast has authority are those who worship him, and whose names have not "been written in the book of life." The expression, "book of life," is found only in this book and Philippians 4:3. In all the places where it occurs it seems to refer primarily to Christians (cf. Philippians 4:3; Revelation 3:5; Revelation 20:12, 15; Revelation 21:27; Revelation 22:19). At baptism the Christian's name is written in the "book of life," from which there is always a possibility of it being blotted out (Revelation 3:5). Those who are not Christians have not their name in the "book of life," but worship the beast, that is, pay allegiance to him. It is "the book of life of the Lamb," because it is through "the Lamb" that there exists a "book of life" for men. Slain from the foundation of the world; or, that hath been slain. It is natural to connect the words, "from the foundation of the world," with "slain," and not with "written." The latter course has been followed by Bengel, Dusterdieck, De Wette, Ewald, Hengstenberg, and others, and in the margin of the Revised Version, and is in accordance with Revelation 17:8, "Whose names were not written in the book of life from the foundation of the world" (see also Matthew 25:34; Ephesians 1:4). "The Lamb hath been slain from the foundation of the world," because from "the foundation of the world" (cf. Hebrews 9:26) his death has been efficacious for the salvation of men; and because his death "was foreordained before the foundation of the world," although manifest only in the last times (1 Peter 1:20). What was foreknown to and ordained by God is spoken of as having taken place. This latter sense must be the meaning if we adopt the alternative reading. Revelation 13:8From the foundation of the world

These words may be construed with slain or with written. In favor of the latter is Revelation 18:8; of the former, 1 Peter 1:19, 1 Peter 1:20. Alford, pertinently as I think, urges the position of the words in favor of the connection with slain, and says that had it not been for the apparent difficulty of the sense thus conveyed, no one would have thought of going so far back as to hath been written for a connection. Render, as Rev., the lamb that hath been slain from the foundation of the world. Καταβολή foundation is literally a throwing or laying down, from καταβάλλω to throw down; hence a laying down of a foundation.

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