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Word Pictures in the New Testament
(Revelation: Chapter 16)

16:1 {A great voice} (megalˆs ph“nˆs). Not an angel as in 5:2; 7:2; 10:3; 14:7,9,15,18, but of God as 15:8 shows, since no one could enter the naos.
{Pour out} (ekcheete). Second aorist active imperative of ekche“ (same form as present active imperative). Blass would change to ekcheate (clearly aorist) as in verse 6.
{The seven bowls} (tas hepta phialas). The article points to verse 7.

16:2 {Went and poured out} (apˆlthen kai execheen). Second aorist active indicative of aperchomai (redundant use like hupagete with ekcheete, "go and pour out," in verse 1) and of ekche“. Each angel "went off" to perform his task. For execheen see it repeated in verses 3,4,8,10,12,17.
{Into the earth} (eis tˆn gˆn). This same use of eis after execheen in verses 3,4.
{It became} (egeneto). "There came" (second aorist middle indicative of ginomai).
{A noisome and grievous sore} (helkos kakon kai ponˆron). "Bad and malignant sore." Helkos is old word for a suppurated wound (Latin "ulcus"), here, verse 11; Lu 16:21. See the sixth Egyptian plague (Ex 9:10; De 28:27,35) and Job 2:7. The magicians were attacked in Egypt and the worshippers of Caesar here (13:17; 14:9,11; 19:20).

16:3 {Into the sea} (eis tˆn thalassan). Like the first Egyptian plague (Ex 7:12-41) though only the Nile affected then.
{Blood as of a dead man} (haima h“s nekrou). At the trumpet (8:11) the water becomes wormwood. Here h“s nekrou is added to Ex 7:19, "the picture of a murdered man weltering in his blood" (Swete). "Coagulated blood, fatal to animal life" (Moffatt).
{Every living soul} (pƒsa psuchˆ z“ˆs). "Every soul of life" (Hebraism, Ge 1:21, marked by life).
{Even the things that were in the sea} (ta en tˆi thalassˆi). "The things in the sea," in apposition with psuchˆ. Complete destruction, not partial as in 8:9.

16:4 {Into the rivers and the fountains of waters} (eis tous potamous kai tas pˆgas t“n hudat“n). See 8:10 for this phrase. Contamination of the fresh-water supply by blood follows that of the sea. Complete again.

16:5 {The angel of the waters} (tou aggelou ton hudat“n). Genitive case object of ˆkousa. See 7:1 for the four angels in control of the winds and 14:18 for the angel with power over fire. The rabbis spoke also of an angel with power over the earth and another over the sea.
{Which art and which wast} (ho “n kai ho ˆn). See this peculiar idiom for God's eternity with ho as relative before ˆn in 1:4,8; 4:8, but without ho erchomenos (the coming on, the one who is to be) there for the future as in 11:17.
{Thou Holy One} (ho hosios). Nominative form, but vocative case, as often. Note both dikaios and hosios applied to God as in 3:1; 15:3f.
{Because thou didst thus judge} (hoti tauta ekrinas). Reason for calling God dikaios and hosios. The punishment on the waters is deserved. First aorist active indicative of krin“, to judge.

16:6 {For} (hoti). Second causal conjunction (hoti) explanatory of the first hoti, like the two cases of hoti in 15:4.
{They poured out} (exechean). Second aorist active indicative of ekche“ with -an instead of -on.
{Blood hast thou given them to drink} (haima autois ded“kas pein). Haima (blood) is the emphatic word, measure for measure for shedding the blood of saints and prophets (11:18; 18:24). Perfect active indicative of did“mi, and so a permanent and just punishment. Pein is the abbreviated second aorist active infinitive of pin“ for piein (epion). It is the epexegetical infinitive after ded“kas. There was no more drinking-water, but only this coagulated blood.
{They are worthy} (axioi eisin). "Terrible antithesis" (Swete) to 3:4. The asyndeton adds to it (Alford).

16:7 {O Lord God, the Almighty} (Kurie ho theos ho pantokrat“r). Just as in 15:3 in the Song of Moses and of the Lamb, vocative with the article ho. "Judgments" (kriseis) here instead of "ways" (hodoi) there, and with the order of the adjectives reversed (alˆthinai kai dikaiai, true and righteous).

16:8 {Upon the sun} (epi ton hˆlion). Not eis (into) as in verses 2,3,4. The fourth trumpet (8:12) affected a third of the sun, moon, and stars with a plague of darkness, but here it is a plague of extreme heat.
{To scorch with fire} (kaumatisai en puri). First aorist active infinitive of kaumatiz“, late (Plutarch, Epictetus) causative verb (from kauma, heat), in N.T. only here and verse 9; Mt 13:6; Mr 4:6. The addition of en puri (in fire, with fire) intensifies the picture.

16:9 {Were scorched} (ekaumatisthˆsan). First aorist passive indicative of same verb.
{With great heat} (kauma mega). Cognate accusative retained with the passive verb. Old word (from kai“ to burn), in N.T. only 7:16 and here. For blaspheming the name of God see 13:6; Jas 2:7; Ro 2:24; 1Ti 6:1. They blamed God for the plagues.
{They repented not} (ou metenoˆsan). This solemn negative aorist of metanoe“ is a refrain like a funeral dirge (9:20f.; 16:11). In 11:13 some did repent because of the earthquake. Even deserved punishment may harden the heart.
{To give him glory} (dounai aut“i doxan). Second aorist active infinitive of did“mi, almost result. For the phrase see 11:13; 14:7; 19:7.

16:10 {Upon the throne of the beast} (epi ton thronon tou thˆriou). That is Rome (13:2). The dragon gave the beast his throne (2:13).
{Was darkened} (egeneto eskot“menˆ). Periphrastic past perfect passive with ginomai and skoto“ (9:2). Like the darkness of the Egyptian plague (Ex 10:22) and worse, for the effects of the previous plagues continue. {They gnawed their tongues} (emas“nto tas gl“ssas aut“n). Imperfect middle of masaomai, old verb (to chew), from ma“ (to knead), only here in N.T.
{For pain} (ek tou ponou). "Out of distress" (cf. ek in 8:13), rare sense of old word (from penomai to work for one's living), in N.T. only here, 21:4; Col 4:13. See Mt 8:12.

16:11 {They blasphemed} (eblasphˆmˆsan) {and they repented not} (kai ou metenoˆsan). Precisely as in verse 9, which see. Not just because of the supernatural darkness, but also "because of their pains" (ek t“n pon“n aut“n, plural here and same use of ek) and their sores (kai ek t“n helk“n aut“n, as in verse 2, only plural, and same use of ek).
{Of their works} (ek t“n erg“n aut“n). "Out of their deeds," and addition to verse 9.
{The God of heaven} (ton theon tou ouranou). As in Da 2:44. Like the pride of Nebuchadrezzar against Jehovah.

16:12 {Upon the great river, the river Euphrates} (epi ton potamon ton megan ton Euphratˆn). The sixth trumpet brings up the river Euphrates also (9:14), only there epi with the locative, while here epi with the accusative. Note triple use of the article ton here.
{Was dried up} (exˆranthˆ). First aorist (prophetic) passive of xˆrain“ (14:15). Cf. Zec 10:11.
{That may be made ready} (hina hetoimasthˆi). Purpose clause with hina and the first aorist passive of hetoimaz“. Common verb in Rev. (8:6; 9:7,15; 12:6; 19:7; 21:2).
{The way for the kings} (hˆ hodos t“n basile“n). Objective genitive basile“n.
{That come from the sunrising} (t“n apo anatolˆs heliou). "Those from the rising of the sun," the kings from the east (cf. Mt 2:2) in their march against Rome. Parthia in particular resisted Rome before Trajan's day.

16:13 {Coming out of} (ek alone, no participle erchomena). {Of the dragon} (tou drakontos). That is Satan (12:3,9).
{Of the beast} (tou thˆriou). The first beast (13:1,12) and then just the beast (13:14ff.; 14:9,11; 15:2; 16:2,10), the brute force of the World-power represented by the Roman Empire" (Swete).
{Of the false prophet} (tou pseudoprophˆtou). Cf. Mt 7:15; Ac 13:6; 1Jo 2:22; 4:3; 2Jo 1:7. Identified with the second beast (13:11-14) in 19:20; 20:10. So the sixth bowl introduces the dragon and his two subalterns of chapters Re 12; 13 (the two beasts).
{Three unclean spirits} (pneumata tria akatharta). Out of the mouths of each of the three evil powers (the dragon and the two beasts) comes an evil spirit. See the use of mouth in 1:16 (9:17f.; 11:5; 12:15; 19:15,21) as a chief seat of influence. In 2Th 2:8 we have "the breath of his mouth" (the other sense of pneuma). For akatharton (unclean) with pneuma see Mr 1:23f.; 3:11; 5:2ff.; Ac 5:16; 8:7. Christ expelled unclean spirits, but His enemies send them forth" (Swete). See Zec 13:2 "the false prophets and the unclean spirits."
{As it were frogs} (h“s batrachoi). Cf. Ex 8:5; Le 11:10ff. Old word, here alone in N.T. Like loathsome frogs in form.

16:14 {Spirits of devils} (pneumata daimoni“n). "Spirits of demons." Explanation of the simile h“s batrachoi. See 1Ti 4:1 about "deceiving spirits and teachings of demons."
{Working signs} (poiounta sˆmeia). "Doing signs" (present active participle of poie“). The Egyptian magicians wrought "signs" (tricks), as did Simon Magus and later Apollonius of Tyana. Houdini claimed that he could reproduce every trick of the spiritualistic mediums.
{Which go forth} (ha ekporeuetai). Singular verb with neuter plural (collective) subject.
{Unto the kings} (epi tous basileis). The three evil spirits (dragon and the two beasts) spur on the kings of the whole world to a real world war. "There have been times when nations have been seized by a passion for war which the historian can but imperfectly explain" (Swete).
{To gather them together} (sunagagein). Second aorist active infinitive of sunag“, to express purpose (that of the unclean spirits).
{Unto the war of the great day of God, the Almighty} (eis ton polemon tˆs hˆmeras tˆs megalˆs tou theou tou pantokratoros). Some take this to be war between nations, like Mr 13:8, but it is more likely war against God (Ps 2:2) and probably the battle pictured in 17:14; 19:19. Cf. 2Pe 3:12, "the day of God," his reckoning with the nations. See Joe 2:11; 3:4. Paul uses "that day" for the day of the Lord Jesus (the Parousia) as in 1Th 5:2; 2Th 1:10; 2:2; 1Co 1:8; 2Co 1:14; Php 1:6; 2:16; 2Ti 1:12,18; 4:8.

16:15 {Behold, I come as a thief} (idou erchomai h“s kleptˆs). The voice of Christ breaks in with the same metaphor as in 3:3, which see. There comes one of seven beatitudes in Rev. (1:3; 14:13; 16:15; 19:9; 20:6; 22:7,14). For grˆgor“n (watching) see 3:2, and for tˆr“n (keeping), 1:3.
{Lest he walk naked} (hina mˆ gumnos peripatˆi). Negative purpose clause with hina mˆ and the present active subjunctive of peripate“, and note predicate nominative gumnos (naked).
{And they see his shame} (kai blep“sin tˆn aschˆmosunˆn autou). Continuation of the final clause with present active subjunctive of blep“. Aschˆmosunˆn is old word (from aschˆm“n, indecent, 1Co 12:23), in N.T. only here and Ro 1:27, a euphemism for tˆn aischunˆn (Re 3:18).

16:16 {They gathered} (sunˆgagen). Second aorist active indicative of sunag“, singular (the three unclean spirits), like ekporeuetai in verse 14.
{Har-Magedon} (Har-Maged“n). John proceeds now after the interruption in verse 15. Perhaps "the mountains of Megiddo" though not certain. Megiddo is in the valley of Esdraelon, and by the waters of Megiddo (the Kishon) Israel gained a decisive victory over Sisera (Jud 5:19), celebrated in Deborah's song. See also Re 20:8ff. and Eze 39:2,4.

16:17 {Upon the air} (epi ton aera). All men breathe the air and this is worse than the smiting of the earth (verse 2), the sea (3), the fresh waters (4), the sun (8).
{A great voice} (ph“nˆ megalˆ). The voice of God as in 16:1.
{It is done} (Gegonen). Perfect active indicative of ginomai. Like Gegonan in 21:6. The whole series of plagues is now complete.

16:18 {And there were} (kai egenonto). "And there came" (same verb "ginomai"). See 8:5; 11:19 for this list of terrible sounds and lightnings, and for the great earthquake (seismos megas) see 6:12; 11:13 (cf. Lu 21:11).
{Such as was not} (hoios ouk egeneto). Qualitative relative with ginomai again, "such as came not."
{Since there were men} (aph' hou anthr“poi egenonto). "Since which time (chronou understood) men came." {So great an earthquake, so mighty} (tˆlikoutos seismos hout“ megas). Quantitative correlative tˆlikoutos rather than the qualitative toioutos, to correspond with hoios (not hosos). And then hout“ megas repeats (redundant) tˆlikoutos. Cf. Mr 13:19 for hoia--toiautˆ about like tribulation (thlipsis).

16:19 {Was divided into three parts} (egeneto eis tria merˆ). "Came into three parts" (ginomai again). In 11:3 a tenth part of the city fell. Babylon (Rome) is meant (17:18).
{Fell} (epesan). Second aorist active indicative of pipt“ (-an form in place of -on).
{Was remembered} (emnˆsthˆ). First aorist (prophetic) passive indicative of mimnˆsk“. Babylon (Rome) had not been overlooked. God was simply biding his time with Rome.
{To give unto her} (dounai autˆi). Second aorist active infinitive of did“mi, epexegetic use as in 11:18; 16:9.
{The cup of the wine of the fierceness of his wrath} (to potˆrion tou oinou tou thumou tˆs orgˆs autou). "The cup of the wine of the wrath of his anger," using both thumos (boiling rage) and orgˆ (settled anger). See both in Jer 30:24.

16:20 {Fled} (ephugen). Second aorist active indicative of pheug“. Islands sometimes sink in the sea in earthquakes (6:14).
{Were not found} (ouch heurethˆsan). First aorist passive indicative of heurisk“. See 20:11 for the same idea.

16:21 {Hail} (chalaza). As in 8:17; 11:19.
{Every stone about the weight of a talent} (h“s talantiaia). Old adjective (from talanton), here only in N.T., but in Polybius and Josephus. See Ex 9:24 for the great hail in Egypt and also Jos 10:11; Isa 28:2; Eze 38:22 for hail as the symbol of God's wrath. In the LXX a talanton ranged in weight from 108 to 130 pounds. {Because of the plague of hail} (ek tˆs plˆgˆs tˆs chalazˆs). "As a result of the plague of hail." This punishment had the same effect as in verses 9,11.
{Exceeding great} (Megalˆ--sphrodra). Emphatic positions at ends of the clause (great--exceedingly).

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Word Pictures in the New Testament
(Revelation: Chapter 16)

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