↑ 1.Introduction and Salutation
1THIS IS THE REVELATION given by God to Jesus Christ. It was given to him so that he might show his servants what must shortly happen. He made it known by sending his angel to his servant John, 2who, in telling all that he saw, has borne witness to the word of God and to the testimony of Jesus Christ.
3Happy is the man who reads, and happy those who listen to the words of this prophecy and heed what is written in it. For the hour of fulfilment is near.
A message from Christ to the churches
4JOHN TO THE SEVEN CHURCHES in the province of Asia.
Grace be to you and peace, from him who is and who was and who is to come, from the seven spirits before his throne, 5and from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the first-born from the dead and ruler of the kings of the earth.
To him who loves us and freed us from our sins with his life's blood, 6who made of us a royal house, to serve as the priests of his God and Father—to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever! Amen.
7 [ Dn.7.13, Zch.12.10. ] Behold, he is coming with the clouds! Every eye shall see him, and among them those who pierced him; and all the peoples of the world shall lament in remorse. So it shall be. Amen.
8'I am the Alpha and the Omega', says the Lord God, who is and who was and who is to come, the sovereign Lord of all.
A Vision of Christ (Patmos)
9I, John, your brother, who share with you in the suffering and the sovereignty and the endurance which is ours in Jesus—I was on the island called Patmos because I had preached God's word and borne my testimony to Jesus. 10It was on the Lord's day, and I was caught up by the Spirit; and behind me I heard a loud voice, like the sound of a trumpet, 11which said to me, 'Write down what you see on a scroll and send it to the seven churches: to Ephesus, Smyrna, Pergamum, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia, and Laodicea.' 12I turned to see whose voice it was that spoke to me; and when I turned I saw seven standing lamps of gold, 13 [ Dn.7.3, Eze.9.2, Dn.10.5. ] and among the lamps one like a son of man, robed down to his feet, with a golden girdle round his breast. 14 [ Dn.7.9, Dn.10.6. ] The hair of his head was white as snow-white wool, and his eyes flamed like fire; 15his feet gleamed like burnished brass refined in a furnace, and his voice was like the sound of rushing waters. 16In his right hand he held seven stars, and out of his mouth came a sharp two-edged sword; and his face shone like the sun in full strength.
17When I saw him, I fell at his feet as though dead. But he laid his right hand upon me and said, 'Do not be afraid. I am the first and the last, 18and I am the is living one; for I was dead and now I am alive for evermore, and I hold the keys of Death and Death's domain. 19Write down therefore what you have seen, what is now, and what will be hereafter.
20'Here is the secret meaning of the seven stars which you saw in my right hand, and of the seven lamps of gold: the seven stars are the angels of the seven churches, and the seven lamps are the seven churches.
↑ 2.The Message to Ephesus (Ephesus)
1TO THE ANGEL of the church at Ephesus write:
'"These are the words of the One who holds the seven stars in his right hand and walks among the seven lamps of gold:
2I know all your ways, your toil and your fortitude. I know you cannot endure evil men; you have put to the proof those who claim to be apostles but are not, and have found them false. 3Fortitude you have; you have borne up in my cause and never flagged. 4But I have this against you: you have lost your early love. 5Think from what a height you have fallen; repent, and do as you once did. Otherwise, if you do not repent, I shall come to you and remove your lamp from its place. 6Yet you have this in your favour: you hate the practices of the Nicolaitans, as I do. 7Hear, you who have ears to hear, what the Spirit says to the churches! To him who is victorious I will give the right to eat from the tree of life that stands in the Garden of God."
The Message to Smyrna
8'To the angel of the church at Smyrna write:
'"These are the words of the First and the Last, who was dead and came to life again: 9I know how hard pressed you are, and poor—and yet you are rich; I know how you are slandered by those who claim to be Jews but are not—they are Satan's synagogue. 10Do not be afraid of the suffering to come. The Devil will throw some of you into prison, to put you to the test; and for ten days you will suffer cruelly. Only be faithful till death, and I will give you the crown of life. 11Hear, you who have ears to hear, what the Spirit says to the churches! He who is victorious cannot be harmed by the second death."
The Message to Pergamum
12'To the angel of the church at Pergamum write:
'"These are the words of the One who has the sharp two-edged sword: 13I know where you live; it is the place where Satan has his throne. And yet you are holding fast to my cause. You did not deny your faith in me even at the time when Antipas, my faithful witness, was killed in your city, the home of Satan. 14But I have a few matters to bring against you: you have in Pergamum some that hold to the teaching of Balaam, who taught Balak to put temptation in the way of the Israelites. He encouraged them to eat food sacrificed to idols and to commit fornication, 15and in the same way you also have some who hold the doctrine of the Nicolaitans. 16So repent! If you do not, I shall come to you soon and make war upon them with the sword that comes out of my mouth. 17Hear, you who have ears to hear, what the Spirit says to the churches! To him who is victorious I will give some of the hidden manna; I will give him also a white stone, and on the stone will be written a new name, known to none but him that receives it."
The Message to Thyatira
18'To the angel of the church at Thyatira write:
'"These are the words of the Son of God, whose eyes flame like fire and whose feet gleam like burnished brass: 19I know all your ways, your love and faithfulness, your good service and your fortitude; and of late you have done even better than at first. 20Yet I have this against you: you tolerate that Jezebel, the woman who claims to be a prophetess, who by her teaching lures my servants into fornication and into eating food sacrificed to idols. 21I have given her time to repent, but she refuses to repent of her fornication. 22So I will throw her on to a bed of pain, and plunge her lovers into terrible suffering, unless they forswear what she is doing; 23and her children I will strike dead. This will teach all the churches that I am the searcher of men's hearts and thoughts, and that I will reward each one of you according to his deeds. 24And now I speak to you others in Thyatira, who do not accept this teaching and have had no experience of what they like to call the deep secrets of Satan; on you I will impose no further burden. 25Only hold fast to what you have, until I come. 26 [ Ps.2.8-9, PsSol.17.23. ] To him who is victorious, to him who perseveres in doing my will to the end, I will give authority over the nations— 27that same authority which I received from my Father—and he shall rule them with an iron rod, smashing them to bits like earthenware; 28and I will give him also the star of dawn. 29Hear, you who have ears to hear, what the Spirit says to the churches!"
↑ 3.The Message to Sardis
1'To the angel of the church at Sardis write:
'"These are the words of the One who holds the seven spirits of God, the seven stars: I know all your ways; that though you have a name for being alive, you are dead. 2Wake up, and put some strength into what is left, which must otherwise die! For I have not found any work of yours completed in the eyes of my God. 3So remember the teaching you received; observe it, and repent. If you do not wake up, I shall come upon you like a thief, and you will not know the moment of my coming. 4Yet you have a few persons in Sardis who have not polluted their clothing. They shall walk with me in white, for so they deserve. 5He who is victorious shall thus be robed all in white; his name I will never strike off the roll of the living, for in the presence of my Father and his angels I will acknowledge him as mine. 6Hear, you who have ears to hear, what the Spirit says to the churches!"
The Message to Philadelphia
7'To the angel of the church at Philadelphia write:
'"These are the words of the holy one, the true one, who holds the key of David; when he opens none may shut, when he shuts none may open: 8I know all your ways; and look, I have set before you an open door, which no one can shut. Your strength, I know, is small, yet you have observed my commands and have not disowned my name. 9So this is what I will do: I will make those of Satan's synagogue, who claim to be Jews but are lying frauds, come and fall down at your feet; and they shall know that you are my beloved people. 10Because you have kept my command and stood fast, I will also keep you from the ordeal that is to fall upon the whole world and test its inhabitants. 11I am coming soon; hold fast what you have, and let no one rob you of your crown.
12He who is victorious—I will make him a pillar in the temple of my God; he shall never leave it. And I will write the name of my God upon him, and the name of the city of my God, that new Jerusalem which is coming down out of heaven from my God, and my own new name. 13Hear, you who have ears to hear, what the Spirit says to the churches!"
The Message to Laodicea
14'To the angel of the church at Laodicea write:
'"These are the words of the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the prime source of all God's creation: 15I know all your ways; you are neither hot nor cold. How I wish you were either hot or cold! 16But because you are lukewarm, neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of my mouth. 17You say, 'How rich I am! And how well I have done! I have everything I want.' In fact, though you do not know it, you are the most pitiful wretch, poor, blind, and naked. 18So I advise you to buy from me gold refined in the fire, to make you truly rich, and white clothes to put on to hide the shame of your nakedness, and ointment for your eyes so that you may see. 19All whom is I love I reprove and discipline. Be on your mettle therefore and repent. 20Here I stand knocking at the door; if anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and sit down to supper with him and he with me. 21To him who is victorious I will grant a place on my throne, as I myself was victorious and sat down with my Father on his throne. 22Hear, you who have ears to hear, what the Spirit says to the churches!" '
↑ 4.The Heavenly Worship
1AFTER THIS I LOOKED, and there before my eyes was a door opened in heaven; and the voice that I had first heard speaking to me like a trumpet said, 'Come up here, and I will show you what must happen hereafter.' 2At once I was caught up by the Spirit. There in heaven stood a throne, 3and on the throne sat one whose appearance was like the gleam of jasper and cornelian; and round the throne was a rainbow, bright as an emerald. 4In a circle about this throne were twenty-four other thrones, and on them sat twenty-four elders, robed in white and wearing crowns of gold. 5From the throne went out flashes of lightning and peals of thunder. Burning before the throne were seven flaming torches, the seven spirits of God, 6and in front of it stretched what seemed a sea of glass, like a sheet of ice.
In the centre, round the throne itself, were four living creatures, covered with eyes, in front and behind. 7 [ Eze.1.5-10, Eze.10.14. ] The first creature was like a lion, the second like an ox, the third had a human face, the fourth was like an eagle in flight. 8 [ Is.6.2-3, Am.3.13, Am.4.13. ] The four living creatures, each of them with six wings, had eyes all over, inside and out; and by day and by night without a pause they sang:
'Holy, holy, holy is God the sovereign Lord of all, who was, and is, and is to come!
9As often as the living creatures give glory and honour and thanks to the One who sits on the throne, who lives for ever and ever, 10the twenty-four elders fall down before the One who sits on the throne and worship him who lives for ever and ever; and as they lay their crowns before the throne they cry:
↑ 5.The Scroll and the Lamb
1Then I saw in the right hand of the One who sat on the throne a scroll, with writing inside and out, and it was sealed up with seven seals. 2And I saw a mighty angel proclaiming in a loud voice, 'Who is worthy to open the scroll and to break its seals?' 3There was no one in heaven or on earth or under the earth able to open the scroll or to look inside it. 4I was in tears because no one was found who was worthy to open the scroll or to look inside it. 5But one of the elders said to me: 'Do not weep; for the Lion from the tribe of Judah, the Scion of David, has won the right to open the scroll and break its seven seals.'
6Then I saw standing in the very middle of the throne, inside the circle of living creatures and the circle of elders, a Lamb with the marks of slaughter upon him. He had seven horns and seven eyes, the eyes which are the seven spirits of God sent out over all the world. 7And the Lamb went up and took the scroll from the right hand of the One who sat on the throne. 8When he took it, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb. Each of the elders had a harp, and they held golden bowls full of incense, the prayers of God's people, 9and they were singing a new song:
↑ 6.The Seals
1THEN I WATCHED as the Lamb broke the first of the seven seals; and I heard one of the four living creatures say in a voice like thunder, 2'Come!' And there before my eyes was a white horse, and its rider held a bow. He was given a crown, and he rode forth, conquering and to conquer.
3When the Lamb broke the second seal, I heard the second creature say, 'Come!' 4And out came another horse, all red. To its rider was given power to take peace from the earth and make men slaughter one another; and he was given a great sword.
5When he broke the third seal, I heard the third creature say, 'Come!' And there, as I looked, was a black horse; and its rider held in his hand a pair of scales. 6And I heard what sounded like a voice from the midst of the living creatures, which said, 'A whole day's wage for a quart of flour, a whole day's wage for three quarts of barley-meal! But spare the olive and the vine.'
7When he broke the fourth seal, I heard the voice of the fourth creature say, 'Come!' 8And there, as I looked, was another horse, sickly pale; and its rider's name was Death, and Hades came close behind. To him was given power over a quarter of the earth, with the right to kill by sword and by famine, by pestilence and wild beasts.
9When he broke the fifth seal, I saw underneath the altar the souls of those who had been slaughtered for God's word and for the testimony they bore. 10They gave a great cry: 'How long, sovereign Lord, holy and true, must it be before thou wilt vindicate us and avenge our blood on the inhabitants of the earth?' 11Each of them was given a white robe; and they were told to rest a little while longer, until the tally should be complete of all their brothers in Christ's service who were to be killed as they had been.
12Then I watched as he broke the sixth seal. And there was a violent earthquake; the sun turned black as a funeral pall and the moon all red as blood; 13the stars in the sky fell to the earth, like figs shaken down by a gale; 14the sky vanished, as a scroll is rolled up, and every mountain and island was moved from its place. 15Then the kings of the earth, magnates and marshals, the rich and the powerful, and all men, slave or free, hid themselves in caves and mountain crags; 16 [ Hs.10.8. ] and they called out to the mountains and the crags, 'Fall on us and hide us from the face of the One who sits on the throne and from the vengeance of the Lamb.' 17For the great day of their vengeance has come, and who will be able to stand?
↑ 7.The 144,000 of Israel Sealed
1After this I saw four angels stationed at the four corners of the earth, holding back the four winds so that no wind should blow on sea or land or on any tree. 2Then I saw another angel rising out of the east, carrying the seal of the living God; and he called aloud to the four angels who had been given the power to ravage land and sea: 3'Do no damage to sea or land or trees until we have set the seal of our God upon the foreheads of his servants.' 4And I heard the number of those who had received the seal. From all the tribes of Israel there were a hundred and forty-four thousand : 5twelve thousand from the tribe of Judah, twelve thousand from the tribe of Reuben, twelve thousand from the tribe of Gad, 6twelve thousand from the tribe of Asher, twelve thousand from the tribe of Naphtali, twelve thousand from the tribe of Manasseh, 7twelve thousand from the tribe of Simeon, twelve thousand from the tribe of Levi, twelve thousand from the tribe of Issachar, 8twelve thousand from the tribe of Zebulun, twelve thousand from the tribe of Joseph, and twelve thousand from the tribe of Benjamin.
The Multitude from Every Nation
9After this I looked and saw a vast throng, which no one could count, from every nation, of all tribes, peoples, and languages, standing in front of the throne and before the Lamb. They were robed in white and had palms in their hands, 10and they shouted together:
11And all the angels stood round the throne and the elders and the four living creatures, and they fell on their faces before the throne and worshipped God, 12crying:
13Then one of the elders turned to me and said, 'These men that are robed in white—who are they and from where do they come?' 14But I answered, 'My lord, you know, not I.' Then he said to me, 'These are the men who have passed through the great ordeal; they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. 15That is why they stand before the throne of God and minister to him day and night in his temple; and he who sits on the throne will dwell with them. 16 [ Is.49.10. ] They shall never again feel hunger or thirst, the sun shall not beat on them nor any scorching heat, 17 [ Ps.23.1, Eze.34.23. ] because the Lamb who is at the heart of the throne will be their shepherd and will guide them to the springs of the water of life; and God will wipe all tears from their eyes.'
↑ 8.The Seventh Seal and the Golden Censer
1Now when the Lamb broke the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven for what seemed half an hour. 2Then I looked, and the seven angels that stand in the presence of God were given seven trumpets.
3Then another angel came and stood at the altar, holding a golden censer; and he was given a great quantity of incense to offer with the prayers of all God's people upon the golden altar in front of the throne. 4And from the angel's hand the smoke of the incense went up before God with the prayers of his people. 5Then the angel took the censer, filled it from the altar fire, and threw it down upon the earth; and there were peals of thunder, lightning, and an earthquake.
The powers of darkness conquered
6THEN THE SEVEN ANGELS that held the seven trumpets prepared to blow them.
7The first blew his trumpet; and there came hail and fire mingled with blood, and this was hurled upon the earth. A third of the earth was burnt, a third of the trees were burnt, all the green grass was burnt.
8The second angel blew his trumpet; and what looked like a great blazing mountain was hurled into the sea. 9A third of the sea was turned to blood, a third of the living creatures in it died, and a third of the ships on it foundered.
10The third angel blew his trumpet; and a great star shot from the sky, flaming like a torch; and it fell on a third of the rivers and springs. 11The name of the star was Wormwood; and a third of the water turned to wormwood, and men in great numbers died of the water because it had been poisoned.
12The fourth angel blew his trumpet; and a third part of the sun was struck, a third of the moon, and a third of the stars, so that the third part went dark and a third of the light of the day failed, and of the night.
13Then I looked, and I heard an eagle calling with a loud cry as it flew in mid-heaven: 'Woe, woe, woe to the inhabitants of the earth when the trumpets sound which the three last angels must now blow!'
1Then the fifth angel blew his trumpet; and I saw a star that had fallen from heaven to earth, and the star was given the key of the shaft of the abyss. 2With this he opened the shaft of the abyss; and from the shaft smoke rose like smoke from a great furnace, and the sun and the air were darkened by the smoke from the shaft. 3Then over the earth, out of the smoke, came locusts, and they were given the powers that earthly scorpions have. 4They were told to do no injury to the grass or to any plant or tree, but only to those men who had not received the seal of God on their foreheads. 5These they were allowed to torment for five months, with torment like a scorpion's sting, but they were not to kill them. 6During that time these men will seek death, but they will not find it; they will long to die, but death will elude them.
7In appearance the locusts were like horses equipped for battle. On their heads were what looked like golden crowns; 8their faces were like human faces and their hair like women's hair; they had teeth like lions' teeth, 9and wore breastplates like iron; the sound of their wings was like the noise of horses and chariots rushing to battle; 10they had tails like scorpions, with stings in them, and in their tails lay their power to plague mankind for five months. 11They had for their king the angel of the abyss, whose name, in Hebrew, is Abaddon, and in Greek, Apollyon, or the Destroyer.
12The first woe has now passed. But there are still two more to come.
13The sixth angel then blew his trumpet; and I heard a voice coming from between the horns of the golden altar that stood in the presence of God. 14It said to the sixth angel, who held the trumpet: 'Release the four angels held bound at the great river Euphrates!' 15So the four angels were let loose, to kill a third of mankind. They had been held ready for this moment, for this very year and month, day and hour. 16And their squadrons of cavalry, whose count I heard, numbered two hundred million.
17This was how I saw the horses and their riders in my vision: They wore breastplates, fiery red, blue, and sulphur-yellow; the horses had heads like lions' heads, and out of their mouths came fire, smoke, and sulphur. 18By these three plagues, that is, by the fire, the smoke, and the sulphur that came from their mouths, a third of mankind was killed. 19The power of the horses lay in their mouths, and in their tails also; for their tails were like snakes, with heads, and with them too they dealt injuries.
20 [ Dt.32.17, Ps.115.4. ] The rest of mankind who survived these plagues still did not abjure the gods their hands had fashioned, nor cease their worship of devils and of idols made from gold, silver, bronze, stone, and wood, which cannot see or hear or walk. 21Nor did they repent of their murders, their sorcery, their fornication, or their robberies.
↑ 10.The Angel and the Little Scroll
1THEN I SAW another mighty angel coming down from heaven. He was wrapped in cloud, with the rainbow round his head; his face shone like the sun and his legs were like pillars of fire. 2In his hand he held a little scroll unrolled. His right foot he planted on the sea, and his left on the land. 3Then he gave a great shout, like the roar of a lion; and when he shouted, the seven thunders spoke. 4I was about to write down what the seven thunders had said; but I heard a voice from heaven saying, 'Seal up what the seven thunders have said, do not write it down.' 5 [ Dt.32.40, Dn.12.7. ] Then the angel that I saw standing on the sea and the land raised his right hand to heaven 6and swore by him who lives for ever and ever, who created heaven and earth and the sea and everything in them: 'There shall be no more delay; 7but when the time comes for the seventh angel to sound his trumpet, the hidden purpose of God will have been fulfilled, as he promised to his servants the prophets.'
8Then the voice which I heard from heaven was speaking to me again, and it said, 'Go and take the open scroll in the hand of the angel that stands on the sea and the land.' 9So I went to the angel and asked him to give me the little scroll. He said to me, 'Take it, and eat it. It will turn your stomach sour, although in your mouth it will taste sweet as honey.' 10So I took the little scroll from the angel's hand and ate it, and in my mouth it did taste sweet as honey; but when I swallowed it my stomach turned sour.
11Then they said to me, 'Once again you must utter prophecies over peoples and nations and languages and many kings.'
↑ 11.The Two Witnesses
1I was given a long cane, a kind of measuring-rod, and told: 'Now go and measure the temple of God, the altar, and the number of the worshippers. 2But have nothing to do with the outer court of the temple; do not measure that; for it has been given over to the Gentiles, and they will trample the Holy City underfoot for forty-two months. 3And I have two witnesses, whom I will appoint to prophesy, dressed in sackcloth, all through those twelve hundred and sixty days.' 4These are the two olive-trees and the two lamps that stand in the presence of the Lord of the earth. 5If anyone seeks to do them harm, fire pours from their mouths and consumes their enemies; and thus shall the man die who seeks to do them harm. 6These two have the power to shut up the sky, so that no rain may fall during the time of their prophesying; and they have the power to turn water to blood and to strike the earth at will with every kind of plague. 7But when they have completed their testimony, the beast that comes up from the abyss will wage war upon them and will defeat and kill them. 8Their corpses will lie in the street of the great city, whose name in allegory is Sodom, or Egypt, where also their Lord was crucified. 9For three days and a half men from every people and tribe, of every language and nation, gaze upon their corpses and refuse them burial. 10All men on earth gloat over them, make merry, and exchange presents; for these two prophets were a torment to the whole earth. 11But at the end of the three days and a half the breath of life from God came into them; and they stood up on their feet to the terror of all who saw it. 12Then a loud voice was heard speaking to them from heaven, which said, 'Come up here!' And they went up to heaven in a cloud, in full view of their enemies. 13At that same moment there was a violent earthquake, and a tenth of the city fell. Seven thousand people were killed in the earthquake; the rest in terror did homage to the God of heaven.
14The second woe has now passed. But the third is soon to come. The Seventh Seal 15Then the seventh angel blew his trumpet; and voices were heard in heaven shouting:
↑ 12.The Woman and the Dragon
1NEXT APPEARED a great portent in heaven, a woman robed with the sun, beneath her feet the moon, and on her head a crown of twelve stars. 2She was pregnant, and in the anguish of her labour she cried out to be delivered. 3Then a second portent appeared in heaven: a great red dragon with seven heads and ten horns; 4on his heads were seven diadems, and with his tail he swept down a third of the stars in the sky and flung them to the earth. The dragon stood in front of the woman who was about to give birth, so that when her child was born he might devour it. 5 [ Is.7.14, Is.66.7, Ps.2.9. ] She gave birth to a male child, who is destined to rule all nations with an iron rod. But her child was snatched up to God and his throne; 6and the woman herself fled into the wilds, where she had a place prepared for her by God, there to be sustained for twelve hundred and sixty days.
7Then war broke out in heaven. Michael and his angels waged war upon the dragon. The dragon and his angels fought, 8but they had not the strength to win, and no foothold was left them in heaven. 9So the great dragon was thrown down, that serpent of old that led the whole world astray, whose name is Satan, or the Devil-thrown down to the earth, and his angels with him.
10Then I heard a voice in heaven proclaiming aloud: 'This is the hour of victory for our God, the hour of his sovereignty and power, when his Christ comes to his rightful rule! For the accuser of our brothers is overthrown, who day and night accused them before our God. 11By the sacrifice of the Lamb they have conquered him, and by the testimony which they uttered; for they did not hold their lives too dear to lay them down. 12Rejoice then, you heavens and you that dwell in them! But woe to you, earth and sea, for the Devil has come down to you in great fury, knowing that his time is short!'
13When the dragon found that he had been thrown down to the earth, he went in pursuit of the woman who had given birth to the male child. 14But the woman was given two great eagle's wings, to fly to the place in the wilds where for three years and a half she was to be sustained, out of reach of the serpent. 15From his mouth the serpent spewed a flood of water after the woman to sweep her away with its spate. 16But the earth came to her rescue and opened its mouth and swallowed the river which the dragon spewed from his mouth. 17At this the dragon grew furious with the woman, and went off to wage war on the rest of her offspring, that is, on those who keep God's commandments and maintain their testimony to Jesus.
Then 2The beast I saw was like a leopard, but its feet were like a bear's and its mouth like a lion's mouth. The dragon conferred upon it his power and rule, and great authority. 3One of its heads appeared to have received a death-blow; but the mortal wound was healed. The whole world went after the beast in wondering admiration. 4Men worshipped the dragon because he had conferred his authority upon the beast; they worshipped the beast also, and chanted, 'Who is like the Beast? Who can fight against it?'
5The beast was allowed to mouth bombast and blasphemy, and was given the right to reign for forty-two months. 6It opened its mouth in blasphemy against God, reviling his name and his heavenly dwelling. 7It was also allowed to wage war on God's people and to defeat them, and was granted authority over every tribe and people, language and nation. 8All on earth will worship it, except those whose names the Lamb that was slain keeps in his roll of the living, written there since the world was made.
9Hear, you who have ears to hear! 10 [ Jr.15.2, Jr.43.11. ] Whoever is to be made a prisoner, a prisoner he shall be. Whoever takes the sword to kill, by the sword he is bound to be killed. This is where the fortitude and faithfulness of God's people have their place.
11Then I saw another beast, which came up out of the earth; it had two horns like a lamb's, but spoke like a dragon. 12It wielded all the authority of the first beast in its presence, and made the earth and its inhabitants worship this first beast, whose mortal wound had been healed. 13It worked great miracles, even making fire come down from heaven to earth before men's eyes. 14By the miracles it was allowed to perform in the presence of the beast it deluded the inhabitants of the earth, and made them erect an image in honour of the beast that had been wounded by the sword and yet lived. 15It was allowed to give breath to the image of the beast, so that it could speak, and could cause all who would not worship the image to be put to death. 16Moreover, it caused everyone, great and small, rich and poor, slave and free, to be branded with a mark on his right hand or forehead, 17and no one was allowed to buy or sell unless he bore this beast's mark, either name or number. 18(Here is the is key; and anyone who has intelligence may work out the number of the beast. The number represents a man's name, and the numerical value of its letters is six hundred and sixty-six.)
↑ 14.The Song of the 144,000
1THEN I LOOKED, and on Mount Zion stood the Lamb, and with him were a hundred and forty-four thousand who had his name and the name of his Father written on their foreheads. 2I heard a sound from heaven like the noise of rushing water and the deep roar of thunder; it was the sound of harpers playing on their harps. 3There before the throne, and the four living creatures and the elders, they were singing a new song. That song no one could learn except the hundred and forty-four thousand, who alone from the whole world had been ransomed. 4These are men who did not defile themselves with women, for they have kept themselves chaste, and they follow the Lamb wherever he goes. They have been ransomed as the firstfruits of humanity for God and the Lamb. 5No lie was found in their lips; they are faultless.
The Messages of the Three Angels
6Then I saw an angel flying in mid-heaven, with an eternal gospel to proclaim to those on earth, to every nation and tribe, language and people. 7He cried in a loud voice, 'Fear God and pay him homage; for the hour of his judgement has come! Worship him who made heaven and earth, the sea and the water-springs!'
8Then another angel, a second, followed, and he cried, 'Fallen, fallen is Babylon the great, she who has made all nations drink the fierce wine of her fornication!'
9Yet a third angel followed, crying out loud, 'Whoever worships the beast and its image and receives its mark on his forehead or hand, 10he shall drink the wine of God's wrath, poured undiluted into the cup of his vengeance. He shall be tormented in sulphurous flames before the holy angels and before the Lamb. 11The smoke of their torment will rise for ever and ever, and there will be no respite day or night for those who worship the beast and its image or receive the mark of its name.' 12This is where the fortitude of God's people has its place—in keeping God's commands and remaining loyal to Jesus.
13Moreover, I heard a voice from heaven, saying, 'Write this: "Happy are the dead who die in the faith of Christ! Henceforth", says the Spirit, "they may rest from their labours; for they take with them the record of their deeds."'
The Harvest of the Earth
14Then as I looked there appeared a white cloud, and on the cloud sat one like a son of man. He had on his head a crown of gold and in his hand a sharp sickle. 15Another angel came out of the temple and called in a loud voice to him who sat on the cloud: 'Stretch out your sickle and reap; for harvest-time has come, and earth's crop is over-ripe.' 16So he who sat on the cloud put his sickle to the earth and its harvest was reaped.
17Then another angel came out of the heavenly temple, and he also had a sharp sickle. 18Then from the altar came yet another, the angel who has authority over fire, and he shouted to the one with the sharp sickle: 'Stretch out your sickle, and gather in earth's grape-harvest, for its clusters are ripe.' 19So the angel put his sickle to the earth and gathered in its grapes, and threw them into the great winepress of God's wrath. 20The winepress was trodden outside the city, and for two hundred miles around blood flowed from the press to the height of the horses' bridles.
↑ 15.The Angels with the Last Plagues
1Then I saw another great and astonishing portent in heaven: seven angels with seven plagues, the last plagues of all, for with them the wrath of God is consummated.
2I saw what seemed a sea of glass shot with fire, and beside the sea of glass, holding the harps which God had given them, were those who had won the victory over the beast and its image and the number of its name.
3They were singing the song of Moses, the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb, as they chanted:
↑ 16.The Bowls of God's Wrath
1Then from the sanctuary I heard a loud voice, and it said to the seven angels, 'Go and pour out the seven bowls of God's wrath on the earth.'
2So the first angel went and poured his bowl on the earth; and foul malignant sores appeared on those men that wore the mark of the beast and worshipped its image.
3The second angel poured his bowl on the sea, and it turned to blood like the blood from a corpse; and every living thing in the sea died.
4The third angel poured his bowl on the rivers and springs, and they turned to blood.
5Then I heard the angel of the waters say, 'Just art thou in these thy judgements, thou Holy One who art and wast; 6for they shed the blood of thy people and of thy prophets, and thou hast given them blood to drink. They have their deserts!' 7And I heard the altar cry, 'Yes, Lord God, sovereign over all, true and just are thy judgements!'
8The fourth angel poured his bowl on the sun; and it was allowed to burn men with its flames. 9They were fearfully burned; but they only cursed the name of God who had the power to inflict such plagues, and they refused to repent or do him homage.
10The fifth angel poured his bowl on the throne of the beast; and its kingdom was plunged in darkness. 11Men gnawed their tongues in agony, but they only cursed the God of heaven for their pains and sores, and would not repent of what they had done.
12The sixth angel poured his bowl on the great river Euphrates; and its water was dried up, to prepare the way for the kings from the east.
13Then I saw coming from the mouth of the dragon, the mouth of the beast, and the mouth of the false prophet, three foul spirits like frogs. 14These spirits were devils, with power to work miracles. They were sent out to muster all the kings of the world for the great day of battle of God the sovereign Lord. 15('That is the day when I come like a thief! Happy the man who stays awake and keeps on his clothes, so that he will not have to go naked and ashamed for all to see!') 16So they assembled the kings at the place called in Hebrew Armageddon.
17Then the seventh angel poured his bowl on the air; and out of the sanctuary came a loud voice from the throne, which said, 'It is over!' 18And there followed flashes of lightning and peals of thunder, and a violent earthquake, like none before it in human history, so violent it was. 19The great city was split in three; the cities of the world fell in ruin; and God did not forget Babylon the great, but made her drink the cup which was filled with the fierce wine of his vengeance. 20Every island vanished; there was not a mountain to be seen. 21Huge hailstones, weighing perhaps a hundredweight, fell on men from the sky; and they cursed God for the plague of hail, because that plague was so severe.
↑ 17.The Great Harlot and the Beast
1THEN ONE OF THE SEVEN ANGELS that held the seven bowls came and spoke to me and said, 'Come, and I will show you the judgement on the great whore, enthroned above the ocean. 2The kings of the earth have committed fornication with her, and on the wine of her fornication men all over the world have made themselves drunk.' 3In the Spirit he carried me away into the wilds, and there I saw a woman mounted on a scarlet beast which was covered with blasphemous names and had seven heads and ten horns. 4The woman was clothed in purple and scarlet and bedizened with gold and jewels and pearls. In her hand she held a gold cup, full of obscenities and the foulness of her fornication; 5and written on her forehead was a name with a secret meaning: 'Babylon the great, the mother of whores and of every obscenity on earth.' 6The woman, I saw, was drunk with the blood of God's people and with the blood of those who had borne their testimony to Jesus.
As I looked at her I was greatly astonished. 7But the angel said to me, 'Why are you so astonished? I will tell you the secret of the woman and of the beast she rides, with the seven heads and the ten horns. 8The beast you have seen is he who once was alive, and is alive no longer, but has yet to ascend out of the abyss before going to perdition. Those on earth whose names have not been inscribed in the roll of the living ever since the world was made will all be astonished to see the beast; for he once was alive, and is alive no longer, and has still to appear.
9'But here is the clue for those who can interpret it. The seven heads are seven hills on which the woman sits. 10They represent also seven kings, of whom five have already fallen, one is now reigning, and the other has yet to come; and when he does come he is only to last for a little while. 11As for the beast that once was alive and is alive no longer, he is an eighth-and yet he is one of the seven, and he is going to perdition. 12The ten horns you saw are ten kings who have not yet begun to reign, but who for one hour are to share with the beast the exercise of royal authority; 13for they have but a single purpose among them and will confer their power and authority upon the beast. 14They will wage war upon the Lamb, but the Lamb will defeat them, for he is Lord of lords and King of kings, and his victory will be shared by his followers, called and chosen and faithful.'
15Then he said to me, 'The ocean you saw, where the great whore sat, is an ocean of peoples and populations, nations and languages. 16As for the ten horns you saw, they together with the beast will come to hate the whore; they will strip her naked and leave her desolate, they will batten on her flesh and burn her to ashes. 17For God has put it into their heads to carry out his purpose, by making common cause and conferring their sovereignty upon the beast until all that God has spoken is fulfilled. 18The woman you saw is the great city that holds sway over the kings of the earth.'
↑ 18.The Fall of Babylon
1After this I saw another angel coming down from heaven; he came with great authority and the earth was lit up with his splendour. 2Then in a mighty voice he proclaimed, 'Fallen, fallen is Babylon the great'. She has become a dwelling for demons, a haunt for every unclean spirit, for every vile and loathsome bird. 3For all nations have drunk deep of the fierce wine of her fornication; the kings of the earth have committed fornication with her, and merchants the world over have grown rich on her bloated wealth.'
4Then I heard another voice from heaven that said: 'Come out of her, my people, lest you take part in her sins and share in her plagues. 5For her sins are piled high as heaven, and God has not forgotten her crimes. 6Pay her back in her own coin, repay her twice over for her deeds! Double for her the strength of the potion she mixed! 7Mete out grief and torment to match her voluptuous pomp! She says in her heart, "I am a queen on my throne! No mourning for me, no widow's weeds!" 8Because of this her plagues shall strike her in a single day—pestilence, bereavement, famine, and burning—for mighty is the Lord God who has pronounced her doom!'
9The kings of the earth who committed fornication with her and wallowed in her luxury will weep and wail over her, as they see the smoke of her conflagration. 10They will stand at a distance, for horror at her torment, and will say, 'Alas, alas for the great city, the mighty city of Babylon! In a single hour your doom has struck!'
11The merchants of the earth also will weep and mourn for her, because no one any longer buys their cargoes, 12cargoes of gold and silver, jewels and pearls, cloths of purple and scarlet, silks and fine linens; all kinds of scented woods, ivories, and every sort of thing made of costly woods, bronze, iron, or marble; 13cinnamon and spice, incense, perfumes and frankincense; wine, oil, flour and wheat, sheep and cattle, horses, chariots, slaves, and the lives of men. 14'The fruit you longed for', they will say, 'is gone from you; all the glitter and the glamour are lost, never to be yours again!' 15The traders in all these wares, who gained their wealth from her, will stand at a distance for horror at her torment, weeping and mourning 16and saying, 'Alas, alas for the great city, that was clothed in fine linen and purple and scarlet, bedizened with gold and jewels and pearls! 17Alas that in one hour so much wealth should be laid waste!'
Then all the sea-captains and voyagers, the sailors and those who traded by sea, stood at a distance 18and cried out as they saw the smoke of her conflagration: 'Was there ever a city like the great city?' 19They threw dust on their heads, weeping and mourning and saying, 'Alas, alas for the great city, where all who had ships at sea grew rich on her wealth! Alas that in a single hour she should be laid waste!'
20But let heaven exult over her; exult, apostles and prophets and people of God; for in the judgement against her he has vindicated your cause!
21Then a mighty angel took up a stone like a great millstone and hurled it into the sea and said, 'Thus shall Babylon, the great city, be sent hurtling down, never to be seen again! 22No more shall the sound of harpers and minstrels, of flute-players and trumpeters, be heard in you; no more shall craftsmen of any trade be found in you; 23no more shall the sound of the mill be heard in you; no more shall the light of the lamp be seen in you; no more shall the voice of the bride and bridegroom be heard in you! Your traders were once the merchant princes of the world, and with your sorcery you deceived all the nations.'
24For the blood of the prophets and of God's people was found in her, the blood of all who had been done to death on earth.
1After this I heard what sounded like the roar of a vast throng in heaven; and they were shouting:
9Then the angel said to me, 'Write this: "Happy are those who are invited to the wedding-supper of the Lamb!" ' And he added, 'These are the very words of God.' 10At this I fell at his feet to worship him. But he said to me, 'No, not that! I am but a fellow-servant with you and your brothers who bear their testimony to Jesus. It is God you must worship. Those who bear testimony to Jesus are inspired like the prophets.'
The Rider and the White Horse
11THEN I SAW heaven wide open, and there before me was a white horse; and its rider's name was Faithful and True, for he is just in judgement and just in war. 12His eyes flamed like fire, and on his head were many diadems. Written upon him was a name known to none but himself, 13and he was robed in a garment drenched in blood. He was called the Word of God, 14and the armies of heaven followed him on white horses, clothed in fine linen, clean and shining. 15 [ Ps.2.9. ] From his mouth there went a sharp sword with which to smite the nations; for he it is who shall rule them with an iron rod, and tread the winepress of the wrath and retribution of God the sovereign Lord. 16And on his robe and on his thigh there was written the name: 'King of kings and Lord of lords.'
17Then I saw an angel standing in the sun, and he cried aloud to all the birds flying in mid-heaven: 18'Come and gather for God's great supper, to eat the flesh of kings and commanders and fighting men, the flesh of horses and their riders, the flesh of all men, slave and free, great and small!' 19Then I saw the beast and the kings of the earth and their armies mustered to do battle with the Rider and his army. 20The beast was taken prisoner, and so was the false prophet who had worked miracles in its presence and deluded those that had received the mark of the beast and worshipped its image. The two of them were thrown alive into the lake of fire with its sulphurous flames. 21The rest were killed by the sword which went out of the Rider's mouth; and all the birds gorged themselves on their flesh.
↑ 20.The Thousand Years
1Then I saw an angel coming down from heaven with the key of the abyss and a great chain in his hands. 2He seized the dragon, that serpent of old, the Devil or Satan, and chained him up for a thousand years; 3he threw him into the abyss, shutting and sealing it over him, so that he might seduce the nations no more till the thousand years were over. After that he must be let loose for a short while.
4Then I saw thrones, and upon them sat those to whom judgement was committed. I could see the souls of those who had been beheaded for the sake of God's word and their testimony to Jesus, those who had not worshipped the beast and its image or received its mark on forehead or hand. These came to life again and reigned with Christ for a thousand years, 5though the rest of the dead did not come to life until the thousand years were over. This is the first resurrection. 6Happy indeed, and one of God's own people, is the man who shares in this first resurrection! Upon such the second death has no claim; but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him for the thousand years.
The Defeat of Satan
7When the thousand years are over, Satan will be let loose from his dungeon; 8and he will come out to seduce the nations in the four quarters of the earth and to muster them for battle, yes, the hosts of Gog and Magog, countless as the sands of the sea. 9So they marched over the breadth of the land and laid siege to the camp of God's people and the city that he loves. But fire came down on them from heaven and consumed them; 10and the Devil, their seducer, was flung into the lake of fire and sulphur, where the beast and the false prophet had been flung, there to be tormented day and night for ever.
The Judgment at the Great White Throne
11Then I saw a great white throne, and the One who sat upon it; from his presence earth and heaven vanished away, and no place was left for them. 12I could see the dead, great and small, standing before the throne; and books were opened. Then another book was opened, the roll of the living. From what was written in these books the dead were judged upon the record of their deeds. 13The sea gave up its dead, and Death and Hades gave up the dead in their keeping; they were judged, each man on the record of his deeds. 14Then Death and Hades were flung into the lake of fire. This lake of fire is the second death; 15and into it were flung any whose names were not to be found in the roll of the living.
↑ 21.The New Heaven and the New Earth
1THEN I SAW a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had vanished, and there was no longer any sea. 2I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, made ready like a bride adorned for her husband. 3 [ Lv.26.11-12, 2Chr.6.18, Eze.37.27. ] I heard a loud voice proclaiming from the throne: 'Now at last God has his dwelling among men! He will dwell among them and they shall be his people, and God himself will be with them. 4 [ Is.25.8. ] He will wipe every tear from their eyes; there shall be an end to death, and to mourning and crying and pain; for the old order has passed away!'
5Then he who sat on the throne said, 'Behold! I am making all things new!' (And he said to me, 'Write this down; for these words are trustworthy and true. 6Indeed', he said, 'they are already fulfilled.') 'For I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. A draught from the water-springs of life will be my free gift to the thirsty. 7 [ 2Sm.7.14. ] All this is the victor's heritage; and I will be his God and he shall be my son. 8But as for the cowardly, the faithless, and the vile, murderers, fornicators, sorcerers, idolaters, and liars of every kind, their lot will be the second death, in the lake that burns with sulphurous flames.'
The New Jerusalem
9Then one of the seven angels that held the seven bowls full of the seven last plagues came and spoke to me and said, 'Come, and I will show you the bride, the wife of the Lamb.' 10So in the Spirit he carried me away to a great high mountain, and showed me the holy city of Jerusalem coming down out of heaven from God. 11It shone with the glory of God; it had the radiance of some priceless jewel, like a jasper, clear as crystal. 12 [ Ex.28.21, Eze.48.30. ] It had a great high wall, with twelve gates, at which were twelve angels; and on the gates were inscribed the names of the twelve tribes of Israel. 13There were three gates to the east, three to the north, three to the south, and three to the west. 14The city wall had twelve foundation-stones, and on them were the names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb.
15The angel who spoke with me carried a gold measuring-rod, to measure the city, its wall, and its gates. 16The city was built as a square, and was as wide as it was long. It measured by his rod twelve thousand furlongs, its length and breadth and height being equal. 17Its wall was one hundred and forty-four cubits high, that is, by human measurements, which the angel was using. 18The wall was built of jasper, while the city itself was of pure gold, bright as clear glass. 19The foundations of the city wall were adorned with jewels of every kind, the first of the foundation-stones being jasper, the second lapis lazuli, the third chalcedony, the fourth emerald, 20the fifth sardonyx, the sixth cornelian, the seventh chrysolite, the eighth beryl, the ninth topaz, the tenth chrysoprase, the eleventh turquoise, and the twelfth amethyst. 21The twelve gates were twelve pearls, each gate being made from a single pearl. The streets of the city were of pure gold, like translucent glass.
22I saw no temple in the city; for its temple was the sovereign Lord God and the Lamb. 23And the city had no need of sun or moon to shine upon it; for the glory of God gave it light, and its lamp was the Lamb. 24 By its light shall the nations walk, and the kings of the earth shall bring into it all their splendo 25The gates of the city shall never be shut by day-and there will be no night. 26The wealth and splendour of the nations shall be brought into it; 27but nothing unclean shall enter, nor anyone whose ways are false or foul, but only those who are inscribed in the Lamb's roll of the living.
1Then he showed me the river of the water of life, sparkling like crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb 2 [ Gn.2.9, Gn.3.22, Eze.47.12. ] down the middle of the city's street. On either side of the river stood a tree of life, which yields twelve crops of fruit, one for each month of the year. The leaves of the trees serve for the healing of the nations, 3and every accursed thing shall disappear. The throne of God and of the Lamb will be there, and his servants shall worship him; 4they shall see him face to face, and bear his name on their foreheads. 5There shall be no more night, nor will they need the light of lamp or sun, for the Lord God will give them light; and they shall reign for evermore.
The Coming of Christ
6THEN HE SAID to me, 'These words are trustworthy and true. The Lord God who inspires the prophets has sent his angel to show his servants what must shortly happen. 7And, remember, I am coming soon!'
Happy is the man who heeds the words of prophecy contained in this book!
8It is I, John, who heard and saw these things. And when I had heard and seen them, I fell in worship at the feet of the angel who had shown them to me. 9But he said to me, 'No, not that! I am but a fellow-servant with you and your brothers the prophets and those who heed the words of this book. It is God you must worship.' 10Then he told me, 'Do not seal up the words of prophecy in this book, for the hour of fulfilment is near. 11Meanwhile, let the evil-doer go on doing evil and the filthy-minded wallow in his filth, but let the good man persevere in his goodness and the dedicated man be true to his dedication.'
12'Yes, I am coming soon, and bringing my recompense with me, to requite everyone according to his deeds! 13I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end.'
14Happy are those who wash their robes clean! They will have the right to the tree of life and will enter by the gates of the city. 15Outside are dogs, sorcerers and fornicators, murderers and idolaters, and all who love and practise deceit.
16'I, Jesus, have sent my angel to you with this testimony for the churches. I am the root and scion of David, the bright star of dawn.'
17'Come!' say the Spirit and the bride.
'Come!' let each hearer reply.
Come forward, you who are thirsty; accept the water of life, a free gift to all who desire it.
18For my part, I give this warning to everyone who is is listening to the words of prophecy in this book: should anyone add to them. God will add to him the plagues described in this book; 19should anyone take away from the words in this book of prophecy, God will take away from him his share in the tree of life and the Holy City, described in this book.
20He who gives this testimony speaks: 'Yes, I am coming soon!'
Amen. Come, Lord Jesus!
21The grace of the Lord Jesus be with you all.