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REVELATION OF ST. JOHN THE DIVINE - Chapter 14 - Verse 6

Verse 6. And I saw another angel. This must, of course, mean a different one from some one mentioned before; but no such angel is referred to in the previous chapters, unless we go back to Re 12:7. It is not necessary, however, to suppose that John refers to a particular angel immediately preceding this. In the course of these visions he had seen many angels; and now, accustomed to these visions, he says that he saw "another" one employed in a remarkable embassy, whose message was fitted to cheer the hearts of the desponding, and to support the souls of the persecuted and the sad—for his appearing was the pledge that the gospel would be ultimately preached to all that dwell upon the earth. The design of this vision is, therefore, substantially the same as the former—to cheer the heart, and to sustain the courage and the faith of the church, in the persecutions and trials which were yet to come, by the assurance that the gospel would be ultimately triumphant.

Fly in the midst of heaven. In the air; so as to appear to be moving along the face of the sky. The scene cannot be in heaven, as the gospel is not to be preached there; but the word must denote heaven as it appears to us— the sky. Prof. Stuart renders it correctly, "mid-air." He is represented as flying, to denote the rapidity with which the gospel would spread through the world in that future period referred to. Compare See Barnes "Isa 6:2".

 

Having the everlasting gospel. The gospel is here called everlasting or eternal,

(a) because its great truths have always existed, or it is conformed to eternal truth;

(b) because it will for ever remain unchanged—not being liable to fluctuation like the opinions held by men;

(c) because its effects will be everlasting—in the redemption of the soul and the joys of heaven. In all the glorious eternity before the redeemed, they will be but developing the effects of that gospel on their own hearts, and enjoying the results of it in the presence of God.

To preach unto them that dwell on the earth. To all men—as is immediately specified. Compare Mt 28:19; Mr 16:15.

And to every nation, and kindred, etc. To all classes and conditions of men; to all men, without any distinction or exception. See Barnes "Re 7:9".

The truth here taught is, that the gospel is to be preached to all men as on an equality, without any reference to their rank, their character, or their complexion; and it is implied also, that at the time referred to this will be done. When that time will be the writer does not intimate farther than that it would be after the beast and his adherents had attempted to stay its progress; and for the fulfilment of this, therefore, we are to look to a period subsequent to the rise and fall of that great Antichristian power symbolized by the beast and his image. This is in entire accordance with the prediction in Daniel. See Barnes on "Da 7:19, seq.

{e} "everlasting gospel" 2 Sa 23:5; Isa 40:8 {f} "to every nation" Eph 3:9

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