Revelation 19 - Outline of Revelation (MENU page)
19:1 And after these things I heard a great voice of much people in heaven, saying,
Alleluia; Salvation, and glory, and honour, and power, unto the Lord our God:
after these things- Following the destruction of Religious & Commercial Babylon (ch. 17,18)
and in compliance with the command to rejoice (18:20).
Alleluia- GK transliteration of HB 'Hallelujah' meaning: "Praise ye the Lord!"
The word occurs only 4x in NT (all in v.1-6). This is the "Hallelujah chorus."
Salvation has fully come, the time for "groaning" has ended.
cp. Rom 8:18-23; Psa 104:35; 147:1-7
a great voice of much people (lit., 'of a great multitude')- This description applies elsewhere
to the tribulation martyrs (7:9-17), who use the same words of praise (7:10,12).
19:2 For true and righteous [are] his judgments:
for he hath judged the great whore, which did corrupt the earth with her fornication,
and hath avenged the blood of his servants at her hand.
true- ie., 'faithful' to His Word, to His Promises.
righteous- ie., 'just,' judging justly.
He has judged- God used His enemies to judge the Harlot (17:16,17).
He has judged...has avenged...- In answer to the prayer of tribulation saints (6:10).
cp. Gen 9:6; Luk 18:7,8; Rom 12:19
19:3 And again they said, Alleluia.
And her smoke rose up for ever and ever.
What a contrast: The praise of the saints / The torment of the wicked.
     Note: The chronological flow, of ch.19, shows (again) that the destruction of the Harlot (mentioned in v.2) precedes the final destruction of the Babylonian world system (accomplished at v.19,20). (Review the notes at 17:8,16 regarding the relative timing of these events.)
19:4 And the four and twenty elders and the four beasts fell down
and worshipped God that sat on the throne, saying, Amen; Alleluia.
The sequence is probably the same as in 5:14-
-- the 4 living creatures say "Amen."
-- the 24 elders, representing the raptured Church, worship: "Alleluia."
Their responses are consistent with v.2.
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.
a voice- This may be the voice of Christ leading the saints in worship: Psa 22:22-24
19:6 And I heard as it were the voice of a great multitude,
and as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of mighty thunderings,
saying, Alleluia: for the Lord God omnipotent reigneth.
Hallelujah- the fourth and last occurrence of the word.
The Lord...reigns- The promised King has come: 2Sam 7:16; Psa 22:27,28; Rev 11:15-18
19:7 Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him:
for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready.
be glad...rejoice- cp. Mat 5:12; 1Pet 4:13
the marriage of the Lamb- occurs in distinct segments (following Jewish wedding customs):
  1. The Betrothal (Legal arrangements): Bridegroom pays dowry, then goes to make ready.
    Fulfilled in the price paid at the cross, and in the ensuing Church Age. Joh 14:1-6
  2. The Consummation: The Bridegroom comes to claim the bride, the marriage is consummated.
    -- Fulfilled at the Rapture of the Church. cp. the shout: Mat 25:1-13
    -- The consummation is suggested by the word used here (v.7) for the Bride...
        The usual GK word is "nymphe," bride. Here it is "gyne," wife.
  3. The Wedding Supper: A celebration including invited guests. (cp. Joh 2:1-11)
    The marriage supper is in view here (v.9). The other segments were completed previously.
His wife hath made herself ready {ie., prepared}-
It is He, who has prepared His wife, for Himself (Eph 5:25-27). It is He, who has prepared an eternal home, for her (1Cor 2:9). Her part has been to love and trust Him (Eph 5:22,23), and to reserve herself for Him (2Cor 11:2; 2Tim 2:21; 1Joh 3:1-3). But even these things reflect His work in her heart.
19:8 And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen,
clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints.
Contrast the covering of the Bride with that of the Harlot (17:4).
The righteousness of the saints- lit., the righteousnesses, or the righteous acts.
There are 2 aspects of the Bride's righteousness:
  1. That of salvation: Christ's righteousness, received by grace through faith.
    cp. Isa 61:10; Rom 3:21,22
  2. That of sanctification: fruit & good works produced by the Holy Spirit
    in the life of the believer who judges the flesh & yields to God. Eph 2:10; Php 3:9,10
    Here, sanctification is complete. Joh 17:23-26; 1Cor 13:12
Her white raiment (not a physical garment)- speaks also of her glorified state. [JBSmith]
Psa 104:1,2; 17:15; Dan 12:3; Mat 13:43; 1Cor 15:40,41; Php 3:21; Mat 17:2
19:9 And he saith unto me, Write,
he- ie., the angel who was showing these things to John (cp. v.10).
Blessed [are] they which are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb.
called= invited. This refers, not to the Bride, but to the invited guests.
The Marriage (segment #2, note at v.7) took place in heaven, following the Rapture.
The Marriage Supper (segment #3, note at v.7) takes place on earth, following Christ's return to earth with His Bride.
The guests include angels, all saints which are not part of the Church, and representatives from nations which survive the tribulation.
In the following verses, note that neither "guests" nor "virgins" are the Bride.
Mat 22:1-14; 25:1-13; Psa 45:9-17
Note: The Church includes Jews & Gentiles who placed their trust in Christ, during the period between the Cross and the Rapture. Many servants of God and witnesses to Christ are not part of the Church. For example, OT believers, tribulation saints, and angels (eg. v.10). These groups have their own special place of honor and reward.
And he saith unto me, These are the true sayings {lit., 'words'} of God.
Lest the promise seem too good to be true. [JBSmith]
19:10 And I fell at his feet to worship him.
John, overwhelmed with the joy of the occasion, misdirects his response.
And he said unto me, See [thou do it] not:
I am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren that have the testimony of Jesus:
worship God: for the testimony of
{ie., witness concerning} Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.
We must never let the events of prophecy distract us from the Person at its center.
Luk 24:27; Joh 5:39; Eph 1:9-10; 1Pet 1:10-12
In the next verse, the One, of whom the scriptures speak from Genesis to Revelation, bursts into full view.
19:11 And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse;
and he that sat upon him [was] called Faithful and True,
and in righteousness he doth judge and make war.
heaven opened- in 4:1, for John to enter. Here, for Christ to exit.
Contrast (in v.11-13) -
Christ's Second Coming to earth
with -
His First Coming
on a white horse-
-- animal of war, ridden by the victor.
on a donkey- Zech 9:9; Mat 21:4,5f
--animal of peace, ridden in meekness.
-- His coming fulfils His promises.
Num 23:19
obedient unto death-
-- even the death of the cross.
Psa 40:7-10; Php 2:8
True- the righteous Standard
-- condemns sin.
Mat 5:17; Joh 8:16; Rom 2:2
The Way, Truth and Life-
-- enables us to approach the Father.
Joh 14:6
doth judge-
-- He is ordained of God as Judge.
Joh 5:22-30; Acts 10:42; 17:31
came not to condemn the world
-- but to save us from condemnation.
Joh 3:17; 8:11; 9:39-41
doth make war-
-- with God's enemies.
Zech 14:3
He made peace with God-
-- for His enemies.
Rom 5:1,10; Eph 2:14-18
19:12 His eyes [were] as a flame of fire, and on his head [were] many crowns;
and he had a name written, that no man knew, but he himself.
eyes as fire- cp. 1:14
-- examining, judging
eyes full of compassion
-- seeking, saving, Mat 9:36; Luk 19:10
many crowns-
-- He is sole ruler of the world.
a crown of thorns-
-- He was rejected by the world. Isa 53:3-8
a name written-
-- but unknown to man.
a name given: Jesus, Emanuel
-- but few believed. Mat 1:21-23; Isa 53:1,2
What is "the name written that no man knew, but He Himself"?
Since 'no man knows,' the following is speculation:
McGee observes that the other names given here are each linked to a gospel theme-
  • King of kings, v.16 - Matthew: Behold your King
  • Faithful & True, v.11 - Mark: Behold my Servant
  • The Word of God, v.13 - John: Behold my Son
McGee suggests that the unknown name is linked to the remaining gospel.
19:13 And he [was] clothed with a vesture dipped in blood:
the blood of the wicked-
-- at the winepress of God's wrath.
Isa 63:1-6
His own blood-
-- was shed for the wicked.
Mat 26:27,28
and his name is called The Word of God.
Joh 1:1,14
19:14 And the armies [which were] in heaven followed him upon white horses,
clothed in fine linen, white and clean.
armies- GK= strateuma, a strategic or military force.
The hosts (armies) of heaven: 1Kin 22:19; Psa 24:10
white garments- speak of the holiness of heaven's armies.
Though her garment is similarly pure, the Bride is distinct from this group.
Note that in ch. 19, there is no suggestion of the Rapture.
(Some, who hold to a post-tribulation Rapture, place it here.) However, here, all movement is from heaven to earth.
19:15 And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword,
that with it he should smite the nations:
2Thes 2:8; Rev 1:16
(more re: the Sword of His mouth, at v.21)
and he shall rule them with a rod of iron:
Psa 2:6-9; Rev 12:1-5
and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God.
His coming brings the raging War of Armageddon to conclusion.
On the day of His return, the world's armies will be fighting house to house in Jerusalem. Zech 14:2,3
19:16 And he hath on [his] vesture and on his thigh a name written,
Who can stand against Him?
It is utter foolishness, but the beast & the world's armies will try. Psa 2:4-6
19:17 And I saw an angel standing in the sun; and he cried with a loud voice,
saying to all the fowls that fly in the midst of heaven,
Come and gather yourselves together unto the supper of the great God;
the supper... - lit., the great supper of God.
This supper is radically distinct from the supper of v.9.
19:18 That ye may eat the flesh of kings, and the flesh of captains,
and the flesh of mighty men, and the flesh of horses, and of them that sit on them,
and the flesh of all [men, both] free and bond, both small and great.
Are you revolted at this sight? (cp. "eat her flesh" at 17:16)
This marks the end of the deeds of the flesh which have long nauseated God.
-- God's enemies are brought to total destruction.
-- Israel & the surviving nations receive instruction: The Lord, He is God. Eze 39:17-29
19:19 And I saw the beast, and the kings of the earth,
and their armies, gathered together
cp. 16:13-16
to make war against him that sat on the horse, and against his army.
19:20 And the beast was taken,
and with him the false prophet that wrought miracles before him,
with which he deceived them that had received the mark of the beast,
and them that worshipped his image.
These both were cast alive into a lake of fire burning with brimstone.
these both- ie., the beast, and the false prophet.
Their followers are slain (v.21) but do not follow them into the lake of fire, until the Great White Throne judgment which follows the Millennial Kingdom. (20:7,11-15)
lake of fire- the place prepared for the Devil & his angels. Mat 25:41
  • It is to be distinguished from Hades which is the temporary place of the wicked dead prior to the Great White Throne judgment. Luk 16:23
  • Is the lake of fire literal?
    Jesus warned of hell fire more frequently than He spoke of heaven.
    If it is not literal, it depicts that which is worse than literal fire & brimstone. [McGee]
19:21 And the remnant {ie., the rest [of those making war against Christ], v.19}
were slain with the sword of him that sat upon the horse {v.11},
which [sword] proceeded out of his mouth:
the sword...out of His mouth- (cp. 1:16; 2:12; 19:15)
and all the fowls were filled with their flesh.
"The defeat of the wicked will then be complete, and will be finalized as later judgments search out and destroy the unsaved in other parts of the earth." [WFWalvoord]
Christ will review all "nations" (GK= ethnos, gentiles, heathen) who have survived the Tribulation. Based on their treatment of His "brethren" during that time, He will either include or exclude them from His earthly kingdom of righteousness. Mat 25:31-46

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