7:1 And 1 after these things I saw four angels standing on the
a four corners of the earth, holding the four winds of the
earth, that the wind should not blow on the earth, nor on
the sea, 2 nor on any tree.
(1) The second part of this section is a preventing of danger,
as we distinguished before in (Re 6:1) that is, of
the caution of God ahead of time to provide for his, after
the example of the Israelites; (Ex 8:23) the faithful
are exempted from the plagues of this wicked world. This
section is a dialogue and bringing in for this whole
chapter by occasion of the prediction and argument of the
sixth seal. For first harm is withheld from the elect,
(Re 7:1-9). Then thanks are given by the elect for that
cause (Re 7:10-12). Lastly, the accomplishment of it
is set forth to the end of the chapter. The first verse is
a transition, speaking of the angels who keep the lesser
parts from harm, until God commands. For, as in
(Eze 10:19), their faces and their wings reach up,
continually waiting on and watching the countenance of God
for their direction and every one of them goes into that
part that is right before his face: wherever the Spirit
goes, they go, they do not step out of the way, not so much
as a foot breadth from the path commanded to them by God.
(a) On the four corners or coasts of the earth.
(2) That is, neither into the air, into which the trees grow.
7:23 And I saw 4 another angel ascending from the east,
having the seal of the living God: and he cried with a loud
voice to the four angels, to whom it was given to hurt the
earth and the sea,
(3) Now God provides against the danger of his elect, by his
commandment (Re 7:2,3), and by sign or figure, both
for those of the nation of the Jews and also for the
Gentiles (Re 7:9).
(4) Not only another, or differing number from the common
angels of God, but also in essence, office and operation
exceeding all angels: that is, Christ Jesus the eternal
angel or Word of God, and mediator of the covenant, see
7:4 And I heard the number of them which were sealed: [and there
were] sealed 5 an hundred [and] forty [and] four thousand
of all the tribes of the children of Israel.
(5) That is, of the Jews a number certain in itself before God,
and such as may be numbered of us: for which cause also the
same is here set down as certain. But of the elect who are
Gentiles, the number indeed is in itself certain with God,
but of us not possibly to be numbered, as God, (Ge 15:5).
This is spoken with respect, when a certain number is put for
one uncertain. Compare with (Re 7:9).
7:7 Of the tribe of Simeon [were] sealed twelve thousand. 6 Of
the tribe of b Levi [were] sealed twelve thousand. Of the
tribe of Issachar [were] sealed twelve thousand.
(6) Here the tribe of Levi is listed with the rest, because all
the Israelites were equally made priests with them in
Christ by his priesthood (Ro 12:1,1Pe 2:9,Re 1:6,5:10).
Dan is not mentioned, because the Danites long before
forsaking the worship of God, were fallen away from the
fellowship of God's people, to the part of the Gentiles:
which evil many ages before Jacob foresaw (Ge 49:17)
(see Geneva "Ge 49:18"), and because of which no mention
is made of this tribe in the book of Chronicles.
(b) He skipped Dan, and reckons Levi.
7:8 Of the tribe of Zabulon [were] sealed twelve thousand. Of
the tribe of c Joseph [were] sealed twelve thousand. Of
the tribe of Benjamin [were] sealed twelve thousand.
(c) Of Ephraim, who was Joseph's other son, and had the
birthright given him, of which he is called Joseph.
7:9 After this I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude, 7 which
no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and
people, and tongues, 8 stood before the throne, and before
the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their
(7) )See Geneva "Re 7:4")
(8) As priests, kings and glorious conquerors by martyrdom:
which is noted by the signs in this verse.
7:109 And cried with a loud voice, saying, Salvation to our
God which sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb.
(9) The praise of God, celebrated first by the holy men, in
this verse, then by the heavenly angels, in the two verses
following (Re 7:11,12).
7:1310 And one of the elders answered, saying unto me, What
are these which are arrayed in white robes? and whence came
(10) A passage over to the explanation of the vision, which the
angel enquires of John to stir him up in this verse and
John in the form of speech, both acknowledges his own
ignorance, attributing knowledge to the angel, and also in
a humble manner requests the explanation of the vision.
7:14 And I said unto him, Sir, thou knowest. And he said to me,
11 These are they which came out of great tribulation,
and have washed their robes, and made them white in the
blood of the Lamb.
(11) The explanation of the vision, in which the angel tells
first the acts of the saints, that is, their sufferings
and work of faith in Christ Jesus, in this verse.
Secondly their glory: both present, which consists in two
things, that they minister to God, and that God protects
them (Re 7:15) and to come, in their perfect
deliverance from all annoyances (Re 7:16) and in
participation of all good things which the memory of past
hurts shall never be able to diminish (Re 7:17). The
cause efficient and which contains all these things is
only one, the Lamb of God, the Lord, the Mediator, and the
Saviour Christ Jesus.
7:15 Therefore are they before the throne of God, and serve him
d day and night in his temple: and he that sitteth on the
throne shall dwell e among them.
(d) He alludes to the Levites, who served day and night,
for there is no night in heaven.
(e) Or, upon them, referring to God's defence and protection
of those who are as safe, as men in the Lord's tents.