Revelation 14:9
And a third angel followed them, calling out in a loud voice, "If anyone worships the beast and its image, and receives its mark on his forehead or on his hand,
A Song of FreedomJ. M. Hoppin.Revelation 14:1-13
Absolute Obedience to the Guidance of ChristBp. Woodford.Revelation 14:1-13
Angelic IncompetencyT. De Witt Talmage.Revelation 14:1-13
Devotion to ChristR. Forgan, B. D.Revelation 14:1-13
Man Training for HeavenHomilistRevelation 14:1-13
Music in HeavenG. Kingsley.Revelation 14:1-13
Musical Art in its Relation to Divine WorshipJ. W. Shackelford, D. D.Revelation 14:1-13
The 144,000J. A. Seiss, D. D.Revelation 14:1-13
The Church God's FirstfruitsW. Milligan, D. D.Revelation 14:1-13
The Communion of SaintsArchdeacon Manning.Revelation 14:1-13
The Followers of JesusT. Kidd.Revelation 14:1-13
The Followers of the LambC. H. Spurgeon.Revelation 14:1-13
The Followers of the LambW. Dyer.Revelation 14:1-13
The Greater SalvationS. Conway, B. A.Revelation 14:1-13
The Music of HeavenS. D. Hillman.Revelation 14:1-13
The Name on the ForeheadPreacher's Portfolio.Revelation 14:1-13
The New SongJames Kidd, B.A.Revelation 14:1-13
The New SongT. G. Selby.Revelation 14:1-13
The New Song in the SoulFred. Brooks.Revelation 14:1-13
The Song of the RedeemedR. Watson.Revelation 14:1-13
The Sublimest Human DistinctionHomilistRevelation 14:1-13
The Unlearned Song of the RedeemedC. A. Bartol.Revelation 14:1-13
TruthfulnessRevelation 14:1-13
UndefiledW. Milligan, D. D.Revelation 14:1-13
HellJ. Saurin.Revelation 14:9-12
PunishmentR. Green Revelation 14:9-12
Soul Prostitution and Soul LoyaltyD. Thomas, D. D.Revelation 14:9-12
Soul Prostitution and Soul LoyaltyD. Thomas Revelation 14:9-12
The Most Awful Threatening the Bible ContainsS. Conway Revelation 14:9-12

(Bengel). Undoubtedly it is so. It makes our flesh creep and our heart shudder as we read it. It is to be noted, that these three angels (vers. 6, 8, 9), who "excel. in strength" bear messages of increasing severity. The first bids us "fear." The second tells of the dread judgment upon Babylon. This third threatens all men everywhere with like and yet more awful doom, if they "worship the beast" or "receive his mark." Now -


1. It seems to mean that the ungodly shall be punished with incessant and unspeakable torments in hell fire, and that forever and ever. This is the doctrine that has been deduced frown this passage again and again. It is one of the buttresses of the popular theology. It is always quoted in support of this doctrine, and is regarded as one of the chief of the proof texts. But if it do teach this, we ask:

(1) Would not the language be more clear? Who certainly knows what the two beasts, the first and second, stand for? Who can do more than guess, with more or less of probability, what St. John meant by them; much less what it was intended we, in our day, should understand by them? And what is "the mark of the beast "? and how do men receive it "in their forehead," or their "hand"? We may think we understand all this. But can any one be sure? But consequences so awful as are threatened here would not be told of in language so ambiguous. If we today be threatened with such doom, the offences that incur it will surely be set forth in words unmistakably plain, and not such as we find here.

(2) May not temporal judgments be so described? May not the same language be used for something quite different from what it is said this means? Yes, for Isaiah thus speaks of Edom (Isaiah 34:8-14): "The smoke thereof shall go up forever." The temporal judgments that came upon Edom are thus described. And so, in Revelation 18., we have word for word the fulfilment on earth, not in Gehenna, of the threatenings we are now considering (cf. vers. 9, 15, 18). Why, then, may not temporal judgments be what are meant here?

(3) Why, in the closing vision of this book, are death, hell, and the lake of fire, pain, sorrow, death, and all such things, declared to have "passed away" and to be "no more" (cf. Revelation 21.)? All these things have not been transferred to some other planet, to defile its surface and darken its heavens. They have "passed away," he alone abiding who "doeth the will of God."

(4) Why is the language of the Bible so constantly of such a kind as to lend the strongest colour to the belief that death, destruction, perishing not a never ending existence in suffering - is the doom of the finally impenitent? That this is so can hardly be denied. The passage before us is, probably, the only one which seems to teach everlasting suffering.

(5) And, if it were a Divine doctrine, would it not, like all other Divine doctrines, "commend itself to every man's conscience in the sight of God"? The truth that St. Paul preached did so commend itself. If this be part of it, why does it not also so commend itself? It is notorious that it does not. Conscience revolts against it, and insistence upon it has generated more unbelief and atheism than, perhaps, any other cause whatsoever. We, therefore, cannot believe that what this passage seems to many minds to mean, it actually does mean. But:

2. We note the following facts.

(1) The occasion of this threatening. Terrible persecution, when it was absolutely necessary to fortify and strengthen the minds of Christians with every consideration that would help them to be faithful under the dreadful trials that beset them.

(2) And in this way this threatening, and others like it (cf. Matthew 10.), were used, and were no small help to the steadying of the wavering will and the strengthening of the feeble heart. "The ancient Cyprian often strengthened his exhortations to steadfastness under bloody persecutions with this word."

(3) The fulfilment of this word (cf. Revelation 18, and parallels). Therefore, whilst not limiting it to temporal punishments:

3. We regard it as telling of that "everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord," which shall be the doom of all apostates and all who persist in rebellion against the Lord.

II. WHAT DOES IT TEACH? Amongst other lessons these:

1. The retribution of God upon unfaithful and wicked men is an awful reality.

2. That in the midst of temptation the remembrance of this will he a great help.

3. That it is the love of God which tells us the truth.

4. That they are fools and self destroyed who will not "come unto" Christ that they "might have life." - S. C.

And the third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, If any man worship the beast and his image.

1. The prostitution of the soul to wrong is an alarming crime.

2. The prostitution of the soul to wrong always incurs lamentable suffering. The metaphors here are borrowed from the sacred books of the Hebrew people, and they convey the idea of suffering of an alarming kind, suggesting —(1) A consciousness of Divine antagonism. "Wine of the wrath of God." In the sense of malignant passion there is no wrath in Him who is love. But it is a psychological fact that the man who suffers because he has done another an injury, has a consciousness that the one he has offended is angry with him, and this consciousness is the chief element in his suffering.(2) A sense of intense agony. "Shall be tormented with fire and brimstone." Brimstone adds intensity to the heat and fury to the flames of fire. "My punishment is greater than I can bear," said Cain. A guilty conscience has its Tartarus or Gehenna within itself.(3) A state of constant restlessness. "They have no rest day nor (and) night." There is no rest in sin. "The wicked are like the troubled sea."

II. SOUL LOYALTY. "Here is the patience of the saints." What is patience? It is not insensibility. Some people are lauded for their patience who should be denounced for their stoicism and indifference. Patience implies at least two things.(1) The existence of trials. Patience lives only in difficulty and danger, in storms and tempests.(2) The highest mental power. Man's highest power of mind is seen not in unsurpassed mechanical inventions, or the sublimest productions of art, not in the most baffling and confounding strategies of bloody war, but in the successful effort to govern all the impulses and master all the boisterous passions of the human soul.

(D. Thomas, D. D.)

The smoke of their

1. Scripture gives no countenance to this absurd opinion, that the wicked shall have no part in resurrection and judgment (Romans 3:4, 5; 2 Corinthians 5:10; Revelation 20:12, 13, 15; John 5:28, 29).

2. Scripture clearly affirms that the punishment of the damned shall not consist of annihilation, but of real and sensible pain (Matthew 26:24; Matthew 11:24). Scripture-images of hell, which are many, will not allow us to confine future punishment to annihilation. It is a worm, a fire, a darkness; they are chains — weeping, wailing, and gnashing of teeth.

3. It appears by Scripture that future punishment will be eternal (Matthew 25:41; Mark 9:44; Matthew 18:8; Revelation 20:10).


1. The nature of man hath nothing incongruous with that degree and duration of punishment of which we speak.

2. Let us attend now to objections taken from the nature of God. A man, who opposeth our doctrine, reasons in this manner. Which way soever I consider a Being supremely perfect, I cannot persuade myself that He will expose His creatures to eternal torments. All His perfections secure me from such terrors as this doctrine seems to inspire. In short, when I consider God under the idea of an equitable legislator, I cannot comprehend how sins committed in a finite period can deserve an infinite punishment.(1) Observe this general truth. It is not probable God would threaten mankind with a punishment, the infliction of which would be incompatible with His perfections.(2) Take each part of the objection drawn from the attributes of God, and said to destroy our doctrine, and consider it separately. The argument taken from the liberty of God would carry us from error to error, and from one absurdity to another. For, if God be free to relax any part of the punishment denounced, He is equally free to relax the whole. The difficulty taken from the goodness of God vanisheth when we rectify popular notions of this excellence of the Divine nature. Goodness in men is a virtue of constitution which makes them suffer when they see their fellow creatures in misery, and which excites them to relieve them. In God it is a perfection independent in its origin, free in its execution, and always restrained by laws of inviolable equity and exact severity. Justice is not incompatible with eternal punishment. It is not to be granted that a sin committed in a limited time ought not to be punished through an infinite duration. It is not the length of time employed in committing a crime that determines the degree and the duration of its punishment, it is the turpitude and atrociousness of it. The justice of God, far from opposing the punishment of the impenitent, requires it. Were we to examine in this manner each part of the objection opposed against our doctrine, we should open a second source of solutions to answer it.(3) The doctrine of degrees of punishment affords us a third. There is an extreme difference between a heathen and a Jew; there is an extreme distance between a Jew and a Christian; and a greater still between a Christian and a heathen. The gospel-rule is, "Unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required." Take this principle which Scripture establisheth in the clearest manner; press home all its consequences; extend it as far as it can be carried; give scope even to your imagination till the punishments which such and such persons suffer in hell are reduced to a degree that may serve to solve the difficulty of the doctrine of their eternity; whatever system ye adopt on this article, I will even venture to say whatever difficulty ye may meet with in following it, it will be always more reasonable, I think, to make of one doctrine clearly revealed a clue to guide through the difficulties of another doctrine clearly revealed too, than rashly to deny the formal decisions of Scripture. I mean to say, it would be more rational to stretch the doctrine of degrees too far, if I may venture to speak so, than to deny that of their eternity.(4) The fourth source of solutions is a maxim from which a divine ought never to depart, and which we wish particularly to inculcate among those who extend the operations of reason too far in matters of religion. Our maxim is this. We know, indeed, in general, what are the attributes of God, but we are extremely ignorant of their sphere, we cannot determine how far they extend. We know, in general, God is free, He is just, He is merciful. But we are too ignorant to determine how far these perfections must go, because the infinity of them absorbs the capacity of our minds. Apply this to our subject. The idea of hell seems to you repugnant to the attributes of God, you cannot comprehend how a just God can punish finite sins with infinite pain; how a merciful God can abandon His creature to eternal miseries. Your difficulties have some probability, I grant. Your reasons, I allow, seem well grounded. But dost thou remember the attributes of God are infinite? Remember, thy knowledge is finite. You think future punishment inconsistent with the attributes of God, but your notion of inconsistence ought to vanish at the appearance of Scripture-light.


1. The quality of the punishments of hell is expressed in these terms — smoke, torment. These metaphorical terms include five ideas. Privation of heavenly happiness, sensation of pain, remorse of conscience, horror of society, increase of crime.

2. It remains only that we consider the length and duration of them. But by what means shall we describe these profound articles of contemplation? Can we number the innumerable and measure that which is beyond all mensuration? Can we make you comprehend the incomprehensible? And shall we amuse you with our imaginations?

(J. Saurin.)

Babylon, Mount Zion, Patmos
Angel, Anyone, Beast, Bow, Brow, Exclaiming, Follow, Followed, Forehead, Gives, Homage, Image, Loud, Mark, Messenger, Receive, Receives, Receiveth, Saying, Statue, Third, Voice, Wild, Worship, Worshipeth, Worshippeth, Worships
1. The Lamb standing on Mount Zion with his company.
6. An angel preaches the gospel.
8. The fall of Babylon.
15. The harvest of the world.
20. The winepress of the wrath of God.

Dictionary of Bible Themes
Revelation 14:9

     5154   forehead

Revelation 14:7-9

     5196   voice

Revelation 14:8-10

     4544   wine

Revelation 14:8-11

     4125   Satan, agents of

Revelation 14:9-11

     4369   sulphur
     4609   beast, the
     5518   seal

Revelation 14:9-13

     4113   angels, agents of judgment

The Approval of the Spirit
TEXT: "Yea, saith the Spirit."--Rev. 14:31. The world has had many notable galleries of art in which we have been enabled to study the beautiful landscape, to consider deeds of heroism which have made the past illustrious, in which we have also read the stories of saintly lives; but surpassing all these is the gallery of art in which we find the text. Humanly speaking John is the artist while he is an exile on the Island of Patmos in the Aegean Sea. The words he uses and the figures he presents
J. Wilbur Chapman—And Judas Iscariot

The Declensions of Christianity, an Argument of Its Truth.
"When the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth?" That the coming of the Son of man, is here intended of Christ's coming at the commencement of the latter day glory, hath been alleged in the preceding discourse, and several considerations adduced in proof. Additional evidence will arise from a view of the prophecies relative to the great declensions which were to take place in the church, during the gospel day. These, we observed, are of two kinds, one, a corruption of religion,
Andrew Lee et al—Sermons on Various Important Subjects

Heavenly Worship
"Up to her courts, with joys unknown, The sacred tribes repaired." Between the wings of the cherubim Jehovah dwelt; on the one altar there all the sacrifices were offered to high heaven. They loved Mount Sion, and often did they sing, when they drew nigh to her, in their annual pilgrimages, "How amiable are thy tabernacles O Lord God of hosts, my King and my God!" Sion is now desolate; she hath been ravished by the enemy; she hath been utterly destroyed; her vail hath been rent asunder, and the virgin
Charles Haddon Spurgeon—Spurgeon's Sermons Volume 3: 1857

20TH DAY. Bliss in Dying.
"He is Faithful that Promised." "Blessed are the dead that die in the Lord."--REV. xiv. 13. Bliss in Dying. My Soul! is this blessedness thine in prospect? Art thou ready, if called this night to lie down on thy death-pillow, sweetly to fall asleep in Jesus? What is the sting of death? It is sin. Is death, then, to thee, robbed of its sting, by having listened to the gracious accents of pardoning love, "Be of good cheer, thy sins, which are many, are all forgiven thee?" If thou hast made up thy
John Ross Macduff—The Faithful Promiser

Wherefore Also the virgins of God Without Blame Indeed...
49. Wherefore also the virgins of God without blame indeed, "follow the Lamb whithersoever He shall have gone," both the cleansing of sins being perfected, and virginity being kept, which, were it lost, could not return: but, because that same Apocalypse itself, wherein such unto one such were revealed, in this also praises them, that "in their mouth there was not found a lie:" [2205] let them remember in this also to be true, that they dare not say that they have not sin. Forsooth the same John,
St. Augustine—Of Holy Virginity.

Let the Inner Ear of the virgin Also...
24. Let the inner ear of the virgin also, thy holy child, hear these things. I shall see [2284] how far she goes before you in the Kingdom of That King: it is another question. Yet ye have found, mother and daughter, Him, Whom by beauty of chastity ye ought to please together, having despised, she all, you second, marriage. Certainly if there were husbands whom ye had to please, by this time, perhaps, you would feel ashamed to adorn yourself together with your daughter; now let it not shame you,
St. Augustine—On the Good of Widowhood.

Letter Xlix to Romanus, Sub-Deacon of the Roman Curia.
To Romanus, Sub-Deacon of the Roman Curia. He urges upon him the proposal of the religious life, recalling the thought of death. Bernard, Abbot of Clairvaux, to his dear Romanus, as to his friend. MY DEAREST FRIEND, How good you are to me in renewing by a letter the sweet recollection of yourself and in excusing my tiresome delay. It is not possible that any forgetfulness of your affection could ever invade the hearts of those who love you; but, I confess, I thought you had almost forgotten yourself
Saint Bernard of Clairvaux—Some Letters of Saint Bernard, Abbot of Clairvaux

Whether virginity is the Greatest of virtues?
Objection 1: It would seem that virginity is the greatest of virtues. For Cyprian says (De Virgin. [*De Habitu Virg.]): "We address ourselves now to the virgins. Sublime is their glory, but no less exalted is their vocation. They are a flower of the Church's sowing, the pride and ornament of spiritual grace, the most honored portion of Christ's flock." Objection 2: Further, a greater reward is due to the greater virtue. Now the greatest reward is due to virginity, namely the hundredfold fruit, according
Saint Thomas Aquinas—Summa Theologica

The Glory of the virgins and Religious.
Here are two other bright throngs that present themselves. They are the holy Virgins and the Religious. Let us first contemplate the bright glory of the virgins. I quote again from the Apocalypse: "And I heard a great voice from heaven. . . . And the voice which I heard was as the voice of harpers, harping upon their harps. And they sang as it were a new canticle before the throne. . . . And no man could say that canticle but those hundred and forty-four thousand. These are they who were not defiled
F. J. Boudreaux—The Happiness of Heaven

Naked or Clothed?
'As he came forth of his mother's womb, naked shall he return to go as he came, and shall take nothing of his labour, which he may carry away in his hand.'--ECCLES. v. 15. '... Their works do follow them.'--REV. xiv. 13. It is to be observed that these two sharply contrasted texts do not refer to the same persons. The former is spoken of a rich worldling, the latter of 'the dead who die in the Lord.' The unrelieved gloom of the one is as a dark background against which the triumphant assurance of
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture

Ripe for Gathering
'Thus hath the Lord God shewed unto me: and behold a basket of summer fruit. 2. And He said, Amos, what seest thou? And I said, A basket of summer fruit. Then said the Lord unto me, The end is come upon My people of Israel; I will not again pass by them any more. 3. And the songs of the temple shall be howlings in that day, saith the Lord God: there shall be many dead bodies in every place; they shall cast them forth with silence. 4. Hear this, O ye that swallow up the needy, even to make the poor
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture

Which Sentence Dishonoreth the Holy Martyrs, Nay Rather Taketh Away Holy Martyrdoms Altogether. ...
3. Which sentence dishonoreth the holy Martyrs, nay rather taketh away holy martyrdoms altogether. For they would do more justly and wisely, according to these men, not to confess to their persecutors that they were Christians, and by confessing make them murderers: but rather by telling a lie, and denying what they were, should both themselves keep safe the convenience of the flesh and purpose of the heart, and not allow those to accomplish the wickedness which they had conceived in their mind.
St. Augustine—Against Lying

Therefore, if we Compare the Things Themselves, we May no Way Doubt that The...
28. Therefore, if we compare the things themselves, we may no way doubt that the chastity of continence is better than marriage chastity, whilst yet both are good: but when we compare the persons, he is better, who hath a greater good than another. Further, he who hath a greater of the same kind, hath also that which is less; but he, who only hath what is less, assuredly hath not that which is greater. For in sixty, thirty also are contained, not sixty also in thirty. But not to work from out that
St. Augustine—On the Good of Marriage

Letter Lii to Another Holy virgin.
To Another Holy Virgin. Under a religious habit she had continued to have a spirit given up to the world, and Bernard praises her for coming to a sense of her duty; he exhorts her not to neglect the grace given to her. 1. It is the source of great joy to me to hear that you are willing to strive after that true and perfect joy, which belongs not to earth but to heaven; that is, not to this, vale of tears, but to that city of God which the rivers of the flood thereof make glad (Ps. xlvi. 4). And in
Saint Bernard of Clairvaux—Some Letters of Saint Bernard, Abbot of Clairvaux

A Treatise of the Fear of God;
SHOWING WHAT IT IS, AND HOW DISTINGUISHED FROM THAT WHICH IS NOT SO. ALSO, WHENCE IT COMES; WHO HAS IT; WHAT ARE THE EFFECTS; AND WHAT THE PRIVILEGES OF THOSE THAT HAVE IT IN THEIR HEARTS. London: Printed for N. Ponder, at the Peacock in the Poultry, over against the Stocks market: 1679. ADVERTISEMENT BY THE EDITOR. "The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom," and "a fountain of life"--the foundation on which all wisdom rests, as well as the source from whence it emanates. Upon a principle
John Bunyan—The Works of John Bunyan Volumes 1-3

Appendix the Daughters of Jerusalem
The question is frequently asked, Who are represented by the daughters of Jerusalem? They are clearly not the bride, yet they are not far removed from her. They know where the Bridegroom makes His flock to rest at noon; they are charged by the Bridegroom not to stir up nor awaken His love when she rests, abiding in Him; they draw attention to the Bridegroom as with dignity and pomp He comes up from the wilderness; their love-gifts adorn His chariot of state; they are appealed to by the bride for
J. Hudson Taylor—Union and Communion

Vanity of Human Glory.
"The world knoweth us not, because it knew Him not."--1 John iii. 1 Of St. Simon and St. Jude, the Saints whom we this day commemorate, little is known[1]. St. Jude, indeed, still lives in the Church in his Catholic epistle; but of his history we only know that he was brother to St. James the Less, and nearly related to our Lord and that, like St. Peter, he had been a married man. Besides his name of Jude or Judas, he is also called Thaddaeus and Lebbaeus in the Gospels. Of St. Simon we only
John Henry Newman—Parochial and Plain Sermons, Vol. VIII

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