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Revelation 4:1 [study!]

American Standard Version (ASV 1901) [2]
— After these things I saw, and behold, a door opened in heaven, and the first voice that I heard, [a voice] as of a trumpet speaking with me, one saying, Come up hither, and I will show thee the things which must come to pass hereafter.
King James Version (KJV 1769)
— After this I looked, and, behold, a door [was] opened in heaven: and the first voice which I heard [was] as it were of a trumpet talking with me; which said, Come up hither, and I will shew thee things which must be hereafter.
New American Standard Bible (NASB ©1995)
— After these things I looked, and behold, a door [standing] open in heaven, and the first voice which I had heard, like [the sound] of a trumpet speaking with me, said, “Come up here, and I will show you what must take place after these things.”
Webster's Revision of the KJB (WEB 1833)
— After this I looked, and behold, a door [was] opened in heaven: and the first voice which I heard, [was] as it were of a trumpet talking with me; which said, Come up hither, and I will show thee things which must be hereafter.
Darby's Translation (DBY 1890)
— After these things I saw, and behold, a door opened in heaven, and the first voice which I heard as of a trumpet speaking with me, saying, Come up here, and I will shew thee the things which must take place after these things.
Rotherham's Emphasized Bible (EBR 1902)
— After these things, I saw, and lo! a door set open in heaven; and, the first voice which I heard as of a trumpet, speaking with me, saying—Come up hither! and I will point out to thee the things which must needs come to pass. After these things,
Young's Literal Translation (YLT 1898)
— After these things I saw, and lo, a door opened in the heaven, and the first voice that I heard [is] as of a trumpet speaking with me, saying, 'Come up hither, and I will shew thee what it behoveth to come to pass after these things;'
Douay-Rheims Challoner Revision (DR 1750)
— After these things I looked, and behold a door was opened in heaven, and the first voice which I heard, as it were, of a trumpet speaking with me, said: Come up hither, and I will shew thee the things which must be done hereafter.
Original King James Bible (AV 1611) [2]
— After this I looked, and beholde, a doore was opened in heauen: and the first voice which I heard, was as it were of a trumpet, talking with me, which said, Come vp hither, and I will shew thee things which must be hereafter.
John Etheridge Peshitta-Aramaic NT (1849)
— AFTER these I saw, and, behold, a door (was) open in heaven. And the first voice that I had heard as a trumpet talking with me, said, Come up hither, and I will make thee see the (things) which must be after these.
James Murdock Peshitta-Aramaic NT (1852)
— After these things, I looked and lo, a door [was] open in heaven. And the first voice which I heard, was as of a trumpet talking with me. It said, Come up hither; and I will show thee the things that must occur hereafter.

Strong's Numbers & Red-LettersGreek New TestamentColor-Code/Key Word Studies
After 3326
{3326} Prime
μετά
meta
{met-ah'}
A primary preposition (often used adverbially); properly denoting accompaniment; 'amid' (local or causal); modified variously according to the case (genitive case association, or accusative case succession) with which it is joined; occupying an intermediate position between G0575 or G1537 and G1519 or G4314; less intimate than G1722, and less close than G4862).
this 5023
{5023} Prime
ταῦτα
tauta
{tow'-tah}
Nomitive or accusative neuter plural of G3778; these things.
I looked, 1492
{1492} Prime
εἰδῶ
eido
{i-do'}
A primary verb; used only in certain past tenses, the others being borrowed from the equivalent, G3700 and G3708; properly to see (literally or figuratively); by implication (in the perfect only) to know.
z5627
<5627> Grammar
Tense - Second Aorist (See G5780)
Voice - Active (See G5784)
Mood - Indicative (See G5791)
Count - 2138 plus 1 in a variant reading in a footnote
and, 2532
{2532} Prime
καί
kai
{kahee}
Apparently a primary particle, having a copulative and sometimes also a cumulative force; and, also, even, so, then, too, etc.; often used in connection (or composition) with other particles or small words.
behold, 2400
{2400} Prime
ἰδού
idou
{id-oo'}
Second person singular imperative middle voice of G1492; used as imperative lo!.
z5628
<5628> Grammar
Tense - Second Aorist (See G5780)
Voice - Active (See G5784)
Mood - Imperative (See G5794)
Count - 459
a door 2374
{2374} Prime
θύρα
thura
{thoo'-rah}
Apparently a primary word (compare 'door'); a portal or entrance (the opening or the closure, literally or figuratively).
[was] opened 455
{0455} Prime
ἀνοίγω
anoigo
{an-oy'-go}
From G0303 and οἴγω [[oigo]] (to open); to open up (literally or figuratively, in various applications).
z5772
<5772> Grammar
Tense - Perfect (See G5778)
Voice - Passive (See G5786)
Mood - Participle (See G5796)
Count - 463
in 1722
{1722} Prime
ἐν
en
{en}
A primary preposition denoting (fixed) position (in place, time or state), and (by implication) instrumentality (medially or constructively), that is, a relation of rest (intermediate between G1519 and G1537); 'in', at, (up-) on, by, etc.
heaven: 3772
{3772} Prime
οὐρανός
ouranos
{oo-ran-os'}
Perhaps from the same as G3735 (through the idea of elevation); the sky; by extension heaven (as the abode of God); by implication happiness, power, eternity; specifically the Gospel (Christianity).
and 2532
{2532} Prime
καί
kai
{kahee}
Apparently a primary particle, having a copulative and sometimes also a cumulative force; and, also, even, so, then, too, etc.; often used in connection (or composition) with other particles or small words.
the x3588
(3588) Complement

ho
{ho}
The masculine, feminine (second) and neuter (third) forms, in all their inflections; the definite article; the (sometimes to be supplied, at others omitted, in English idiom).
first 4413
{4413} Prime
πρῶτος
protos
{pro'-tos}
Contracted superlative of G4253; foremost (in time, place, order or importance).
voice 5456
{5456} Prime
φωνή
phone
{fo-nay'}
Probably akin to G5316 through the idea of disclosure; a tone (articulate, bestial or artificial); by implication an address (for any purpose), saying or language.
which 3739
{3739} Prime
ὅς
hos
{hos}
Probably a primary word (or perhaps a form of the article G3588); the relative (sometimes demonstrative) pronoun, who, which, what, that.
I heard 191
{0191} Prime
ἀκούω
akouo
{ak-oo'-o}
A primary verb; to hear (in various senses).
z5656
<5656> Grammar
Tense - Aorist (See G5777)
Voice - Active (See G5784)
Mood - Indicative (See G5791)
Count - 2319
[was] as it were x5613
(5613) Complement
ὡς
hos
{hoce}
Probably adverb of comparative from G3739; which how, that is, in that manner (very variously used as shown).
of y5613
[5613] Standard
ὡς
hos
{hoce}
Probably adverb of comparative from G3739; which how, that is, in that manner (very variously used as shown).
a trumpet 4536
{4536} Prime
σάλπιγξ
salpigx
{sal'-pinx}
Perhaps from G4535 (through the idea of quavering or reverberation); a trumpet.
talking 2980
{2980} Prime
λαλέω
laleo
{lal-eh'-o}
A prolonged form of an otherwise obsolete verb; to talk, that is, utter words.
z5723
<5723> Grammar
Tense - Present (See G5774)
Voice - Active (See G5784)
Mood - Participle (See G5796)
Count - 2549
with 3326
{3326} Prime
μετά
meta
{met-ah'}
A primary preposition (often used adverbially); properly denoting accompaniment; 'amid' (local or causal); modified variously according to the case (genitive case association, or accusative case succession) with which it is joined; occupying an intermediate position between G0575 or G1537 and G1519 or G4314; less intimate than G1722, and less close than G4862).
me; 1700
{1700} Prime
ἐμοῦ
emou
{em-oo'}
A prolonged form of G3449; of me.
which said, 3004
{3004} Prime
λέγω
lego
{leg'-o}
A primary verb; properly to 'lay' forth, that is, (figuratively) relate (in words [usually of systematic or set discourse; whereas G2036 and G5346 generally refer to an individual expression or speech respectively; while G4483 is properly to break silence merely, and G2980 means an extended or random harangue]); by implication to mean.
z5723
<5723> Grammar
Tense - Present (See G5774)
Voice - Active (See G5784)
Mood - Participle (See G5796)
Count - 2549
Come up 305
{0305} Prime
ἀναβαίνω
anabaino
{an-ab-ah'-ee-no}
From G0303 and the base of G0939; to go up (literally or figuratively).
z5628
<5628> Grammar
Tense - Second Aorist (See G5780)
Voice - Active (See G5784)
Mood - Imperative (See G5794)
Count - 459
hither, 5602
{5602} Prime
ὧδε
hode
{ho'-deh}
From an adverb form of G3592; in this same spot, that is, here or hither.
and 2532
{2532} Prime
καί
kai
{kahee}
Apparently a primary particle, having a copulative and sometimes also a cumulative force; and, also, even, so, then, too, etc.; often used in connection (or composition) with other particles or small words.
I will shew 1166
{1166} Prime
δείκνυω
deiknuo
{dike-noo'-o}
A prolonged form of an obsolete primary of the same meaning; to show (literally or figuratively).
z5692
<5692> Grammar
Tense - Future (See G5776)
Voice - Active (See G5784)
Mood - Indicative (See G5791)
Count - 814
thee 4671
{4671} Prime
σοί
soi
{soy}
Dative case of G4771; to thee.
things which 3739
{3739} Prime
ὅς
hos
{hos}
Probably a primary word (or perhaps a form of the article G3588); the relative (sometimes demonstrative) pronoun, who, which, what, that.
must 1163
{1163} Prime
δεῖ
dei
{die}
Third person singular active present of G1210; also δεόν [[deon]], {deh-on'}; which is neuter active participle of the same; both used impersonally; it is (was, etc.) necessary (as binding).
z5748
<5748> Grammar
Tense - Present (See G5774)
Voice - No Voice Stated (See G5799)
Mood - Indicative (See G5791)
Count - 1612
be 1096
{1096} Prime
γίνομαι
ginomai
{ghin'-om-ahee}
A prolonged and middle form of a primary verb; to cause to be ('gen' -erate), that is, (reflexively) to become (come into being), used with great latitude (literally, figuratively, intensively, etc.).
z5635
<5635> Grammar
Tense - Second Aorist (See G5780)
Voice - Middle Deponent (See G5788)
Mood - Infinitive (See G5795)
Count - 42
hereafter. 3326
{3326} Prime
μετά
meta
{met-ah'}
A primary preposition (often used adverbially); properly denoting accompaniment; 'amid' (local or causal); modified variously according to the case (genitive case association, or accusative case succession) with which it is joined; occupying an intermediate position between G0575 or G1537 and G1519 or G4314; less intimate than G1722, and less close than G4862).
5023
{5023} Prime
ταῦτα
tauta
{tow'-tah}
Nomitive or accusative neuter plural of G3778; these things.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Commentary

Revelation 4:1

_ _ Revelation 4:1-11. Vision of God’s throne in Heaven; the four and twenty elders; the four living creatures.

_ _ Here begins the Revelation proper; and first, the fourth and fifth chapters set before us the heavenly scenery of the succeeding visions, and God on His throne, as the covenant God of His Church, the Revealer of them to His apostle through Jesus Christ. The first great portion comprises the opening of the seals and the sounding of the trumpets (fourth to eleventh chapters). As the communication respecting the seven churches opened with a suitable vision of the Lord Jesus as Head of the Church, so the second part opens with a vision suitable to the matter to be revealed. The scene is changed from earth to heaven.

_ _ After thisGreek, “After these things,” marking the opening of the next vision in the succession. Here is the transition from “the things which are” (Revelation 1:19), the existing state of the seven churches, as a type of the Church in general, in John’s time, to “the things which shall be hereafter,” namely, in relation to the time when John wrote.

_ _ I looked — rather as Greek, “I saw” in vision; not as English Version means, I directed my look that way.

_ _ was — Omit, as not being in the Greek.

_ _ opened — “standing open”; not as though John saw it in the act of being opened. Compare Ezekiel 1:1; Matthew 3:16; Acts 7:56; Acts 10:11. But in those visions the heavens opened, disclosing the visions to those below on earth. Whereas here, heaven, the temple of God, remains closed to those on earth, but John is transported in vision through an open door up into heaven, whence he can see things passing on earth or in heaven, according as the scenes of the several visions require.

_ _ the first voice which I heard — the voice which I heard at first, namely, in Revelation 1:10; the former voice.

_ _ was as it were — Omit was, it not being in the Greek. “Behold” governs in sense both “a door,” etc., and “the first voice,” etc.

_ _ Come up hither — through the “open door.”

_ _ be — come to pass.

_ _ hereafterGreek, “after these things”: after the present time (Revelation 1:19).

Matthew Henry's Commentary

Revelation 4:1-8

_ _ We have here an account of a second vision with which the apostle John was favoured: After this, that is, not only “after I had seen the vision of Christ walking in the midst of the golden candlesticks,” but “after I had taken his messages from his mouth, and written and sent them to the several churches, according to his command, after this I had another vision.” Those who well improve the discoveries they have had of God already are prepared thereby for more, and may expect them. Observe,

_ _ I. The preparation made for the apostle's having this vision.

_ _ 1. A door was opened in heaven. Hence we learn, (1.) Whatever is transacted on earth is first designed and settled in heaven; there is the model of all the works of God; all of them are therefore before his eye, and he lets the inhabitants of heaven see as much of them as is fit for them. (2.) We can know nothing of future events but what God is pleased to discover to us; they are within the veil, till God opens the door. But, (3.) So far as God reveals his designs to us we may and ought to receive them, and not pretend to be wise above what is revealed.

_ _ 2. To prepare John for the vision, a trumpet was sounded, and he was called up into heaven, to have a sight there of the things which were to be hereafter. He was called into the third heavens. (1.) There is a way opened into the holiest of all, into which the sons of God may enter by faith and holy affections now, in their spirits when they die, and in their whole persons at the last day. (2.) We must not intrude into the secret of God's presence, but stay till we are called up to it.

_ _ 3. To prepare for this vision, the apostle was in the Spirit. He was in a rapture, as before (Revelation 1:10), whether in the body or out of the body we cannot tell; perhaps he himself could not; however all bodily actions and sensations were for a time suspended, and his spirit was possessed with the spirit of prophecy, and wholly under a divine influence. The more we abstract ourselves from all corporeal things the more fit we are for communion with God; the body is a veil, a cloud, and clog to the mind in its transactions with God. We should as it were forget it when we go in before the Lord in duty, and be willing to drop it, that we may go up to him in heaven. This was the apparatus to the vision. Now observe,

_ _ II. The vision itself. It begins with the strange sights that the apostle saw, and they were such as these: — 1. He saw a throne set in heaven, the seat of honour, and authority, and judgment. Heaven is the throne of God; there he resides in glory, and thence he gives laws to the church and to the whole world, and all earthly thrones are under the jurisdiction of this throne that is set in heaven. 2. He saw a glorious one upon the throne. This throne was not empty; there was one in it who filled it, and that was God, who is here described by those things that are most pleasant and precious in our world: His countenance was like a jasper and a sardine-stone; he is not described by any human features, so as to be represented by an image, but only by his transcendent brightness. This jasper is a transparent stone, which yet offers to the eye a variety of the most vivid colours, signifying the glorious perfections of God; the sardine-stone is red, signifying the justice of God, that essential attribute of which he never divests himself in favour of any, but gloriously exerts it in the government of the world, and especially of the church, through our Lord Jesus Christ. This attribute is displayed in pardoning as well as in punishing, in saving as well as in destroying sinners. 3. He saw a rainbow about the throne, like unto an emerald, Revelation 4:3. The rainbow was the seal and token of the covenant of the providence that God made with Noah and his posterity with him, and is a fit emblem of that covenant of promise that God has made with Christ as the head of the church, and all his people in him, which covenant is as the waters of Noah unto God, an everlasting covenant, ordered in all things and sure. This rainbow looked like the emerald; the most prevailing colour was a pleasant green, to show the reviving and refreshing nature of the new covenant. 4. He saw four-and-twenty seats round about the throne, not empty, but filled with four-and-twenty elders, presbyters, representing, very probably, the whole church of God, both in the Old Testament and in the New Testament state; not the ministers of the church, but rather the representatives of the people. Their sitting denotes their honour, rest, and satisfaction; their sitting about the throne signifies their relation to God, their nearness to him, the sight and enjoyment they have of him. They are clothed in white raiment, the righteousness of the saints, both imputed and inherent; they had on their heads crowns of gold, signifying the honour and authority given them of God, and the glory they have with him. All these may in a lower sense be applied to the gospel church on earth, in its worshipping assemblies; and, in the higher sense, to the church triumphant in heaven. 5. He perceived lightnings and voices proceeding out of the throne; that is, the awful declarations that God makes to his church of his sovereign will and pleasure. Thus he gave forth the law on mount Sinai; and the gospel has not less glory and authority than the law, though it be of a more spiritual nature. 6. He saw seven lamps of fire burning before the throne, which are explained to be the seven Spirits of God (Revelation 4:5), the various gifts, graces, and operations of the Spirit of God in the churches of Christ; these are all dispensed according to the will and pleasure of him who sits upon the throne. 7. He saw before the throne a sea of glass, like unto crystal. As in the temple there was a great vessel of brass filled with water, in which the priests were to wash when they went to minister before the Lord (and this was called a sea), so in the gospel church the sea or laver for purification is the blood of the Lord Jesus Christ, who cleanses from all sin, even from sanctuary-sins. In this all those must be washed that are admitted into the gracious presence of God on earth or his glorious presence in heaven. 8. He saw four animals, living creatures, between the throne and the circle of elders (as seems most probable), standing between God and the people; these seem to signify the ministers of the gospel, not only because of this their situation nearer to God, and between him and the elders or representatives of the Christian people, and because fewer in number than the people, but as they are here described, (1.) By their many eyes, denoting sagacity, vigilance, and circumspection. (2.) By their lion-like courage, their great labour and diligence (in which they resemble the ox), their prudence and discretion becoming men, and their sublime affections and speculations, by which they mount up with wings like eagles towards heaven (Revelation 4:7), and these wings full of eyes within, to show that in all their meditations and ministrations they are to act with knowledge, and especially should be well acquainted with themselves and the state of their own souls, and see their own concern in the great doctrines and duties of religion, watching over their own souls as well as the souls of the people. (3.) By their continual employment, and that is, praising God, and not ceasing to do so night and day. The elders sit and are ministered unto; these stand and minister: they rest not night nor day. This now leads to the other part of the representation.

John Wesley's Explanatory Notes

Revelation 4:1

After these things — As if he had said, After I had written these letters from the mouth of the Lord. By the particle and, the several parts of this prophecy are usually connected: by the expression, after these things, they are distinguished from each other, Revelation 7:9; Revelation 19:1. By that expression, and after these things, they are distinguished, and yet connected, Revelation 7:1; Revelation 15:5; Revelation 18:1. St. John always saw and heard, and then immediately wrote down one part after another: and one part is constantly divided from another by some one of these expressions. I saw — Here begins the relation of the main vision, which is connected throughout; as it appears from "the throne, and him that sitteth thereon;" "the Lamb;" (who hitherto has appeared in the form of a man;) " the four living creatures;" and " the four and twenty elders," represented from this place to the end. From this place, it is absolutely necessary to keep in mind the genuine order of the texts, as it stands in the preceding table. A door opened in heaven — Several of these openings are successively mentioned. Here a door is opened; afterward, "the temple of God in heaven," Revelation 11:19; Revelation 15:5; and, at last, "heaven" itself, Revelation 19:11. By each of these St. John gains a new and more extended prospect. And the first voice which I had heard — Namely, that of Christ: afterward, he heard the voices of many others. Said, Come up hither — Not in body, but in spirit; which was immediately done.

Geneva Bible Translation Notes

Revelation 4:1

After (1) this I looked, and, behold, a door [was] opened in heaven: and the first voice which I heard [was] as it were of a trumpet talking with me; which said, Come up hither, and I will shew thee things which must be hereafter.

(1) Hereafter follows the second part of this book, altogether prophetical foretelling those things which were to come, as was said in (Revelation 1:19). This is divided into two histories: one common to the whole world, till Chapter 9 and another unique to the Church of God, till Chapter 22. These histories are said to be described in several books (Revelation 5:1, Revelation 10:2). Now this verse is a passage from the former part to this second: where it is said, that heaven was opened, that is, that heavenly things were unlocked and that a trumpet sounded in heaven, to stir up the apostle, and call him to the understanding of things to come. The first history has two parts: one the causes of things done and of this whole revelation in this next chapter, another of the acts done in the next four chapters. The principal causes according to the economy or dispensation of it, are two: One the beginning, which none can approach, that is, God the Father, of whom is spoken in this chapter. The other, the Son, who is the secondary cause, easy to be approached, in that he is God and man in one person; (Revelation 5:5-9).

Cross-Reference Topical ResearchStrong's Concordance
After:

Revelation 1:1-3:22 The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave unto him, to shew unto his servants things which must shortly come to pass; and he sent and signified [it] by his angel unto his servant John: ... He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches.

a door:

Exodus 1:1 Now these [are] the names of the children of Israel, which came into Egypt; every man and his household came with Jacob.
Matthew 3:16 And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him:
Mark 1:10 And straightway coming up out of the water, he saw the heavens opened, and the Spirit like a dove descending upon him:
Luke 3:21 Now when all the people were baptized, it came to pass, that Jesus also being baptized, and praying, the heaven was opened,
Acts 7:56 And said, Behold, I see the heavens opened, and the Son of man standing on the right hand of God.
Acts 10:11 And saw heaven opened, and a certain vessel descending unto him, as it had been a great sheet knit at the four corners, and let down to the earth:

the first:

Revelation 1:10 I was in the Spirit on the Lord's day, and heard behind me a great voice, as of a trumpet,
Revelation 16:17 And the seventh angel poured out his vial into the air; and there came a great voice out of the temple of heaven, from the throne, saying, It is done.

Come:

Revelation 11:12 And they heard a great voice from heaven saying unto them, Come up hither. And they ascended up to heaven in a cloud; and their enemies beheld them.
Exodus 19:24 And the LORD said unto him, Away, get thee down, and thou shalt come up, thou, and Aaron with thee: but let not the priests and the people break through to come up unto the LORD, lest he break forth upon them.
Exodus 24:12 And the LORD said unto Moses, Come up to me into the mount, and be there: and I will give thee tables of stone, and a law, and commandments which I have written; that thou mayest teach them.
Exodus 34:2-3 And be ready in the morning, and come up in the morning unto mount Sinai, and present thyself there to me in the top of the mount. ... And no man shall come up with thee, neither let any man be seen throughout all the mount; neither let the flocks nor herds feed before that mount.

and I:

Revelation 1:19 Write the things which thou hast seen, and the things which are, and the things which shall be hereafter;
Revelation 22:6 And he said unto me, These sayings [are] faithful and true: and the Lord God of the holy prophets sent his angel to shew unto his servants the things which must shortly be done.
John 16:13 Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, [that] shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come.
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Ex 1:1; 19:24; 24:12; 34:2. Mt 3:16. Mk 1:10. Lk 3:21. Jn 16:13. Ac 7:56; 10:11. Rv 1:1, 10, 19; 11:12; 16:17; 22:6.

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