Revelation 19:5
And a voice came out of the throne, saying, Praise our God, all ye his servants, and ye that fear him, both small and great.
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(5-7) And a voice came.—From the direction of the throne there came a voice bidding all God’s servants rejoice. We are not told whose voice it is. Some have assumed that it is Christ’s: it is better to leave it indefinite. In response to the bidding, the voice of praise is heard (like the voice spoken of in Revelation 14:2), as it were, the voice of a great multitude; and, as it were, the voice of many waters; and, as it were, the voice of mighty thunders. All nature’s tones seem mingled in this voice of praise: it is human, it is majestic as the sea, and glorious as the thunder.

The Anthem.


For the Lord reigned,

The God, the Almighty.

Let us rejoice and exult,

And we will give the glory to Him,

Because the marriage of the Lamb is come,

And His wife hath made herself ready.

In this anthem the word for “reigneth” is not in the present tense, as in the English version; but, though it is translated here “reigned,” we must not understand it of the past only: it expresses the exultation of the servants of God that the Kingship of their God is manifested, and vindicated against those who denied, or hated His rule. His reign never ceased; and He has showed that His was a real sovereignty. Their joy rises also from the prospect of the nearer union between the Lamb and His Bride. This close union is more fully spoken of later: here the glorious close is for a moment anticipated: the morning glow announces the coming day: it is near even at the doors. The image of the marriage is familiar. It entered into our Lord’s parable (Matthew 22:2-10; Matthew 25:1-10): we catch it in the Psalms and in the Epistles (Psalms 45, and Ephesians 5:23; Ephesians 5:30; 2Corinthians 11:2.)

19:1-10 Praising God for what we have, is praying for what is yet further to be done for us. There is harmony between the angels and the saints in this triumphant song. Christ is the Bridegroom of his ransomed church. This second union will be completed in heaven; but the beginning of the glorious millennium (by which is meant a reign of Christ, or a state of happiness, for a thousand years on earth) may be considered as the celebration of his espousals on earth. Then the church of Christ, being purified from errors, divisions, and corruptions, in doctrine, discipline, worship, and practice, will be made ready to be publicly owned by him as his delight and his beloved. The church appeared; not in the gay, gaudy dress of the mother of harlots, but in fine linen, clean and white. In the robes of Christ's righteousness, imputed for justification, and imparted for sanctification. The promises of the gospel, the true sayings of God, opened, applied, and sealed by the Spirit of God, in holy ordinances, are the marriage-feast. This seems to refer to the abundant grace and consolation Christians will receive in the happy days which are to come. The apostle offered honour to the angel. The angel refused it. He directed the apostle to the true and only object of religious worship; to worship God, and him alone. This plainly condemns the practice of those who worship the elements of bread and wine, and saints, and angels; and of those who do not believe that Christ is truly and by nature God, yet pay him a sort of worship. They stand convicted of idolatry by a messenger from heaven. These are the true sayings of God; of Him who is to be worshipped, as one with the Father and the Holy Spirit.And a voice came out of the throne - A voice seemed to come from the very midst of the throne. It is not said by whom this voice was uttered. It cannot be supposed, however, that it was uttered by God himself, for the command which it gave was this: "Praise our God," etc. For the same reason it seems hardly probable that it was the voice of the Messiah, unless it be supposed that he here identifies himself with the redeemed church, and speaks of God as his God and hers. It would seem rather that it was a responsive voice that came from those nearest the throne, calling on all to unite in praising God in view of what was done. The meaning then will be, that all heaven was interested in the triumph of the church, and that one portion of the dwellers there called on the others to unite in offering thanksgiving.

Praise our God - The God that we worship.

All ye his servants - All in heaven and earth; all have occasion for thankfulness.

And ye that fear him - That reverence and obey him. The fear of the Lord is a common expression in the Scriptures to denote true piety.

Both small and great - All of every class and condition - poor and rich - young and old; those of humble and those of exalted rank. Compare Psalm 148:7-13.

5. out of—Greek, "out from the throne" in A, B, C.

Praise our God—Compare the solemn act of praise performed by the Levites, 1Ch 16:36; 23:5, especially when the house of God was filled with the divine glory (2Ch 5:13).

both—omitted in A, B, C, Vulgate, Coptic, and Syriac. Translate as Greek, "the small and the great."

And a voice came out of the throne, from Christ, declaring it the will of God, that all holy ones should praise him upon this account.

And a voice came out of the throne,.... Not from God the Father, that sat upon it, for the phrase,

praise our God, could not be said by him with propriety and pertinence; but rather from Christ, the Lamb, in the midst of the throne, who as Mediator could say of him to his people, my God and your God, and my Father and your Father, John 20:17 though it seems best to understand it of the voice of one of the angels about the throne, since one of these is afterwards spoken of, whom John would have worshipped, but was forbid, Revelation 19:9 and which may design either one of the ministering spirits, or a preacher of the Gospel, and a set of such, calling upon the saints to the discharge of their duty, or to return to it on this occasion:

saying, praise our God, all ye his servants; meaning not the ministers of the Gospel only, who serve in the Gospel of Christ, by preaching and defending it, and in the administration of Gospel ordinances to the comfort of the saints, but all the people of God; for though they are sons, and no more servants to sin and Satan, and the world, yet they are servants of God and of righteousness, and serve him willingly and cheerfully in a way of duty, and without slavish fear, and with a godly one, and from principles of love and gratitude, and without mercenary views and selfish ends; and these are called upon, as a part of their service, to say hallelujah, or to sing the praises of God for his judgments on antichrist; see Psalm 134:1.

and ye that fear him, both small and great; who fear the Lord, not with a servile, but filial fear, with the new covenant grace of fear, which springs from, and is increased by, the goodness and grace of God; whether greater or lesser believers, fathers, young men, or children; whether Jews or Gentiles, or of whatsoever nation, kindred, or people; see Psalm 115:13.

{4} And a voice came out of the {5} throne, saying, Praise our God, all ye his servants, and ye that fear him, both small and great.

(4) The second place of praise, as I said see Geneva Re 19:1 which first is commanded by God in this verse: and then is in most ample manner pronounced by the creatures, both because they see that kingdom of Christ to come, which they desire, Re 19:6 and also because they see the Church is called forth to be brought home to the house of her husband by holy marriage, to the fellowship of his kingdom, Re 19:7,8. Therefore John is commanded to write in a book the acclamation together with a divine testimony, Re 19:9.

(5) Out of the temple from God as in Re 11:19.

Revelation 19:5. ἀπὸ τοῦ θρόνου. “Out of the throne.” It does not follow that the voice is that of Christ who sits upon the throne.[4033] Beng. writes that it belongs to the four beasts; Züll. and De Wette, to one of them. It may be referred also to the elders, because of the form of the summons (Τ. Θ. ἩΜῶΝ).[4034]

Τῷ ΘΕῷ. The dat. with ΑἸΝΕῖΝ, which is regarded as though it were ΔΙΔΌΝΑΙ ΑῚΝΟΝ,[4035] occurs also in the LXX.[4036] Comparison with the Hebrew text shows not only that the expression ΑἸΝΕῖΤΕ Τῷ ΘΕῷ says precisely the same as the ἉΛΛΗΛΟΥΪΆ retained in the Hebrew form,[4037] but also that the construction of αἰνεῖν with the dat. has occurred where the הַלֵּל was combined with כְ. In Jeremiah 20:13, a clause so construed at any rate precedes.

πἀντες οἱ δοῦλοι αὐτοῦ. Cf. Psalm 135:1.

οἱ φοβούμενοι, κ.τ.λ. Cf. Psalm 115:13.

[4033] Against Ewald, Hengstenb.

[4034] Cf. also Revelation 5:9.

[4035] Luke 18:43.

[4036] 1 Chronicles 16:36; 1 Chronicles 23:5; 2 Chronicles 20:19; Jeremiah 20:13.

[4037] Cf. Hesych., who very accurately explains ἀλληλ.: αἶνος τῷ ὅντι θεῷ, αἰνεῖτε τὸν κυριον [“Praise to him that is God, praise ye the Lord”].

Revelation 19:5. The O.T. expression servants of God implied (R. S. 69 f.) not simply membership in a community of which God is king, but special devotion to his service and worship. It was not associated with any idea of “slavery to a divine despot,” but was originally confined in the main to royal and priestly families (cf. Revelation 1:5) which had a special interest in primitive religion and which were near to the god of the tribe or nation. Hence, in the broader and later sense of the term, the “servants of God” are all those who live in pious fear of him, i.e., yielding him honour and obedience. John, pre-occupied with judgment, views the faith of the Lord as equivalent practically to his fear; unlike most early Christian writers, who (1 Peter 1:17-18, etc.) carefully bring forward the complementary element of love. Lowly confidence rather than warm intimacy is this prophet’s ideal of the Christian life towards God. See Did. 3, 4.; Barn. Revelation 4:11; Herm. Mand. x. 1, xii. 4, 6.

5. Praise our God &c.] Compare the opening of Psalms 134, 135.

both small and great] Psalm 115:13. “Both” should perhaps be omitted.

Revelation 19:5. [208] ΑἸΝΕῖΤΕ Τῷ ΘΕῷ ἩΜῶΝ) The LXX., ΚΑῚ ᾜΝΕΣΑΝ Τῷ ΚΥΡΊῼ, 1 Chronicles 16:36; ΑἸΝΕῖΝ Τῷ ΚΥΡΊῼ, ch. 1 Chronicles 23:5; also 2 Chronicles 5:13; 2 Chronicles 20:19, Hebr. הלל ליהוה. That solemn act of praise which was accustomed to be offered to the Lord by the Levites is described in these places. Add the passage of Ezra 3:11, respecting all the people, in the same phrase in Hebrew and Greek. How much greater solemnity is there in the Apocalypse! All His servants, and they that fear Him, small and great, are stirred up to a solemn proclaiming of His praise. They perform this in Revelation 19:6. [Comp. Psalm 115:13.]

[208] 2. ἀληθιναὶ, true) The words which, ch. Revelation 6:10, are related in the form of prayer, the same are now expressly repeated, and transposed into a doxology.—V. g.

Verse 5. - And a voice came out of the throne, saying. Ἐκ "out of," is found in א, P, 1, 34, etc.; ἀπό, "forth from," is supported by A, B, C, etc.; while B reads οὐρανοῦ, "heaven," instead of θρόνου, "throne." Alford suggests that the direction rather than the source of the voice is intended. It is impossible to say to whom the voice should be attributed (cf. Revelation 10:4, 8, etc.). As an invitation to the Church to praise God, we might expect the voice to be that of one of the elders. Praise our God, all ye his servants, and ye that fear him, both small and great, א, C, P, omit the first "and," thus reading: "ye his servants, ye that fear him," etc. The first words are a repetition of the "Hallelujah" of ver. 1. The following phrases are found in Psalm 134:1; Psalm 115:13. Revelation 19:5All ye His servants - small and great

Compare Psalm 115:13; Psalm 134:1.

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