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Geneva Study Notes
Revelation Chapter 2

Revelation 2:1
2:1 Unto {1} the angel of the church of Ephesus write; {2} These
    things saith he that holdeth the seven stars in his right
    hand, who walketh in the midst of the seven golden
    candlesticks;

 (1) The former part of this book is comprised in a narration of
     those things which then were, as John taught us, in
     Revelation 1:19 it belongs wholly to instruction, and in these
     two next chapters, contains seven places, according to the
     number and condition of those churches which were named
     before in Revelation 1:11 shown in Revelation 1:11 and distributed
     most aptly into their pastors and flocks, Revelation 1:10
     which verse of that chapter is a passage to the first part.
     Every one of these seven passages has three principal parts,
     an introduction taken from the person of the reprehension of
     that which is evil: an instruction, containing either an
     exhortation alone, or a dissuasion opposite to it, and a
     conclusion stirring to attention, by divine promises.  This
     first passage is to the pastors of the church of Ephesus.
 (2) The introduction in which are contained the special prayers
     of Christ Jesus the author of this prophecy out of
     Revelation 1:6,13.

Revelation 2:2
2:2 {3} I know thy works, and thy labour, and thy patience, and
    how thou canst not bear them which are evil: and thou hast
    tried them which say they are apostles, and are not, and
    hast found them liars:

 (3) The proposition first condemning the pastor of this church
     Revelation 2:2,3 then reproving him Revelation 2:2,3 after
     informing him, and threatening that he will move the
     church to another place Revelation 2:5.  This threat of divine
     vengeance Christ mitigates by a type of correction, calling
     to mind the particular virtue and piety of the Church, which
     God never leaves without recompense Revelation 2:6. Concerning
     the Nicolaitans, see Revelation 2:15.

Revelation 2:4
2:4 Nevertheless I have [somewhat] {a} against thee, because
    thou hast left thy first love.

    (a) To deal with you for.

Revelation 2:7
2:7 {4} He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith
    unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat
    of the tree of life, which is in {5} the midst of the {b}
    paradise of God.

 (4) The conclusion containing a commandment of attention, and a
     promise of everlasting life, shown in a figure; Genesis 2:9.
 (5) That is, in paradise after the manner of the Hebrew phrase.
    (b) Thus Christ speaks as he is mediator.

Revelation 2:8
2:8 {6} And unto the angel of the church in {c} Smyrna write;
    These things saith the first and the last, which was dead,
    and is alive;

 (6) The second passage is to the pastors of the church of the
     Smyrnians.  The introduction is taken out of Revelation 1:17,18.
    (c) Smyrna was one of the cities of Ionia in Asia.

Revelation 2:9
2:9 {7} I know thy works, and tribulation, and poverty, (but
    thou art rich) and [I know] the blasphemy of them which say
    they are Jews, and are not, but [are] the synagogue of
    Satan.

 (7) The proposition of praise is in this verse, and of
     exhortation joined with a promise, is in Revelation 2:10.

Revelation 2:10
2:10 Fear none of those things which thou shalt suffer: behold,
     the devil shall cast [some] of you into prison, that ye may
     be tried; and ye shall have {8} tribulation ten days: be
     thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of
     life.

 (8) That is, of ten years.  For so commonly both in this book
     and in Daniel, years are signified by days: that God by
     this might declare, that the space of time is appointed by
     him and the same very short.  Now because John wrote this
     book in the end of Domitian the Emperor's reign, as
     Justinus and Ireneus do witness, it is altogether necessary
     that this should be referred to that persecution which was
     done by the authority of the emperor Trajan: who began to
     make havock of the Christian church in the tenth year of
     his reign, as the historians do write: and his bloody
     persecution continued until Adrian the emperor had
     succeeded in his stead: The space of which time is
     precisely ten years, which are here mentioned.

Revelation 2:11
2:11 {9} He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith
     unto the churches; He that overcometh shall not be hurt
     {10} of the second death.

 (9) The conclusion, as in Revelation 2:7.
 (10) See Revelation 10:6.

Revelation 2:12
2:12 {11} And to the angel of the church in {d} Pergamos write;
     These things saith he which hath the sharp sword with two
     edges;

 (11) The third passage is to the pastors of Pergamos.  The
      introduction is taken from Revelation 1:16.
     (d) Pergamos was the name of a famous city of old in Asia,
         where the kings of the Attalians were always resident.

Revelation 2:13
2:13 {12} I know thy works, and where thou dwellest, [even]
     where Satan's seat [is]: and thou holdest fast my name, and
     hast not denied my faith, even in {e} those days wherein
     Antipas [was] my faithful martyr, who was slain among you,
     where Satan dwelleth.

 (12) The proposition of praise is in this verse, of
      reprehension in the two following, and of exhortation
      joined with a conditional threat Revelation 2:16.  Now this
      Antipas was the angel or minister of the church of
      Pergamos, as Aretas writes.
     (e) The faith of those at Pergamos is so much the more
         highly commended, because they remained constant even
         in the very heat of persecution.

Revelation 2:14
2:14 But I have a few things against thee, because thou hast
     there them that hold the doctrine of Balaam, who taught
     Balac to cast a stumblingblock before the children of
     Israel, to {f} eat things sacrificed unto idols, and to
     commit fornication.

     (f) That which is here spoken of things offered to idols,
         is meant of the same type which Paul speaks of in
         1 Corinthians 10:14.

Revelation 2:15
2:15 So hast thou also them that hold the doctrine of the {13}
     Nicolaitans, which thing I hate.

 (13) Which follow the footsteps of Balaam, and such as are
      abandoned to all filthiness, as he showed in the verse
      before, and is here signified by a note of similarity, and
      thus also must Revelation 2:6 be understood.  For this
      matter especially Ireneus must be consulted as well.

Revelation 2:17
2:17 {14} He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit
     saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give
     to eat {15} of the hidden {g} manna, and will give him a
     {h} {16} white stone, and in the stone a new {17} name
     written, which no man knoweth saving he that receiveth
     [it].

 (14) The conclusion, by way of exhortation as before, and of
      promise.
 (15) The bread of life, invisible, spiritual, and heavenly,
      which is kept secretly with God, from before all eternity.
     (g) He alludes to Psalm 105:40 John 6:26-59.
     (h) Arethas writes that such a stone was given to wrestlers
         at games, or else that such stones did in old time
         witness the leaving of a man.
 (16) Which is a sign and witness of forgiveness and remission
      of sins, of righteousness and true holiness, and of purity
      uncorrupted after the sin nature is destroyed.
 (17) A sign and testimony of newness of life in righteousness
      and true holiness, by putting on the new man, whom no one
      inwardly knows, but the spirit of man which is in him,
      which is not praised by men, but by God; Romans 2:28.

Revelation 2:18
2:18 And unto {18} the angel of the church in Thyatira write;
     These things saith the Son of God, who hath his eyes like
     unto a flame of fire, and his feet [are] like fine brass;

 (18) The fourth passage is to the pastors of Thyatira.  The
      introduction is taken from Revelation 1:14,15.

Revelation 2:19
2:19 I know {19} thy works, and charity, and {i} service, and
     faith, and thy patience, and thy works; and the last [to
     be] more than the first.

 (19) The note of praise is in this verse, and in Revelation 2:20
      reprehension, for they tolerated with them the doctrine
      of unrighteousness and ungodliness. In Revelation 2:21,
      though they were called back to God, they did not repent.
      To this he adds even stronger threats and in Revelation 3:2-5
      he gives a conditional promise and an exhortation to
      hold fast the truth
      (i) So he calls those offices of charity which are done to
         the saints.

Revelation 2:20
2:20 Notwithstanding I have a few things against thee, because
     thou sufferest that woman Jezebel, which calleth herself a
     prophetess, to teach and to seduce my servants to commit
     {k} fornication, and to eat things sacrificed unto idols.

     (k) Often in the scripture, by fornication they mean
         idolatry.

Revelation 2:24
2:24 But unto you I say, and unto the rest in Thyatira, as many
     as have not this doctrine, and which have not known the {l}
     depths of Satan, as they speak; I will {m} put upon you
     none other burden.

     (l) He points out the bragging of certain men, who boasted
         of their deep, that is, plentiful and common knowledge,
         which nonetheless is devilish.
     (m) I will speak no worse thing against you, being content
         to have showed you what I require to be in you.

Revelation 2:26
2:26 {20} And he that overcometh, and keepeth my works unto the
     end, to him will I give {21} power over the nations:

 (20) The conclusion, in which Christ assures to his servants
      the communion of his kingdom and glory, in this verse, and
      that following: and commands a holy attention in the last
      verse Revelation 2:29.
 (21) That is, I will make him a king, by communion with me, and
      my fellow heir, as it is promised; Matthew 19:28,25:34,
      Romans 8:17, 1 Corinthians 6:3, Ephesians 2:6, 2 Timothy 2:12.

Revelation 2:27
2:27 {22} And he shall rule them with a rod of iron; as the
     vessels of a potter shall they be broken to shivers: even
     as I received of my Father.

 (22) The brightness of greatest glory and honour nearest
      approaching to the light of Christ, who is the Son of
      righteousness, and our head; Matthew 4:14,16.



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