And to her was
granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the
fine linen is the righteousness of saints.
1. See the word “righteousness”?
It means righteous deeds.
This verse seems to indicate that the fine linen, clean and white,
represents the good deeds that the saints have performed while on earth.
This is what Paul referred to in Philippians 2.12:
“Wherefore, my beloved, as ye
have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my
absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.”
And from our understanding of First Corinthians 3.11-16, we know that the
context in which such good works were done was the local church
congregation, identified by the apostle Paul as the temple of God.
2. This might scare
some people into thinking that this verse somehow detracts from the Bible
doctrine of God imputing righteousness to you, or giving you the
righteousness of Christ, when you trust Christ as your Savior and receive
the gift of eternal life. Never fear, however, for this is not the case at
3. To understand
what John meant here you need to realize that there were two garments
typically worn by people in those days. There was an inner garment,
similar to our under clothes, and there was an outer garment, which the
Romans referred to as a toga.
4. The clothes
analogy goes something like this: When Christ saves a person God places on
that person, as representing the righteousness of Christ that is imputed
to believers through faith in Christ, that inner garment. You get the
inner garment, it must be understood, at the time you trust Christ.
5. The outer
garment, such as the toga, which stands for a person’s good works after
he receives Christ, is something which every believer must sew for
himself. It is rather like a girl with a hope chest who, throughout her
life, collects various materials with which to someday make her wedding
6. When the Rapture
comes, Christ will judge each piece of cloth/good works to evaluate
whether it was acceptable service to Him or not. The acceptable pieces
will be used to make our marriage garment, but the unacceptable pieces
will be burned in the fire at the judgment seat of Christ.
7. But remember, it
is the inner garment that gets you to heaven, and that inner garment
represents the righteousness of Christ which comes through faith. This
garment that we work to prepare has nothing immediately to do with getting
saved, but is related to the kind of Christian life you must live after
you get saved.
8. The bride making
herself ready in verse 7 might represent church age Christians gone to
heaven who are sewing those pieces of cloth together to make their
individual wedding garments, their togas.
9. Let me read a
well-written summary statement from a noted Bible teacher:
weddings consisted of 3 phases: 1) betrothal (often when the couple were
children); 2) presentation (the festivities, often lasting several days,
that preceded the ceremony); and 3) the ceremony (the exchanging of vows).
The church was betrothed to Christ by His sovereign choice in eternity
past (Eph. 1:4; He. 13:20) and will be presented to Him at the Rapture
(John 14:1-3; 1 Thess. 4:13-18). The final supper will signify the end of
the ceremony. This symbolic meal will take place at the establishment of
the millennial kingdom and last throughout that 1,000 year period (cf
21:2). While the term “bride” often refers to the church, and does so
here (2 Cor. 11:2; Eph. 5:22-24), it ultimately expands to include all the
redeemed of all ages, which becomes clear in the remainder of the book.
And he saith unto
me, Write, Blessed are they
which are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb. And he saith unto
me, These are the true sayings of God.
1. This verse
brings up an important point about those who will be attending the
marriage of the Lord Jesus Christ to His church. As I mentioned
previously, some of those present will not be a part of the bride.
2. Some people say
that others in attendance will be angels. In part, this is right, but
remember that John the Baptist identified himself as a friend of the
Bridegroom and not as a part of the bride.
3. This indicates
what many other verses bear out. Namely, that only those persons who are
saved during the church age will be members of the bride of Christ. Old
Testament saints will actually be guests at the marriage, as will angels,
invited by the Groom, Himself.
4. It is possible
that tribulation saints, those saved during the seven years of
tribulation, will not take part in the ceremony in any way. Certainly,
those who died without Christ will have no part in the marriage.
And I fell at his
feet to worship him. And he said unto me, See thou
do it not: I am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren that have the
testimony of Jesus: worship God: for the testimony of Jesus is the spirit
1. When John saw
the events surrounding the marriage of the Lamb he was apparently overcome
with himself and fell down at some person’s feet to worship him,
forgetting, I suppose, that it was only one of God’s creatures that
stood before him. However, that individual would not allow such blasphemy,
even if it were accidental or the result of ignorance. Remember people,
Satan’s sin was in wanting this kind of adoration. This fellow, however,
wanted no part of such misplaced adoration.
2. Who is this
fellow? What is this fellow? He is mentioned in verse 9 as the one who
spoke to John. Apparently, he is also the one whose voice in verses 5-8 is
so majestic and overwhelming. But just who he is, we do not know at this
3. Is it not
interesting, however, to consider by way of comparison the actions of the
masses who gather around the so-called Vicar of Christ? No matter where
the Pope of Rome travels there are teeming masses who bow down and worship
or try to kiss his hand. Ever wonder why he does not do what this
individual did, and tell those folks not to commit such sin?
4. This person
identifies himself as a servant of Christ just as John is. Such
identification might suggest that he is a redeemed person and not an
angel. He also says, “I
am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren that have the testimony of Jesus.”
But for the fact that Revelation 1.1 reads, “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,” I would be dogmatic
about this necessarily being a redeemed man, most probably one of the 24
5. In addition,
notice the very last phrase of verse 10, which reads, “for
the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.” This angel/man
is telling John that the true spirit of all Biblical prophecy gives
witness to, or gives testimony to, the Lord Jesus Christ. “Jesus is the
provider of prophetic revelation in accordance with Revelation 1:1, and
prophecy should always point to Christ with the purpose and intent to
provide revelation of Christ.”
6. This verse shows us what we already know, that Jesus Christ is the focus of the prophecies of the Bible. Might I add that any religious persuasion that detracts from the person and work of Christ does not have the genuine spirit of prophecy.
 Fritz Rienecker & Cleon Rogers, Linguistic Key To The Greek New Testament, (Grand Rapids, MI: Regency Reference Library, 1980), page 855.
 See footnote for Revelation 19.7 from John MacArthur, The MacArthur Study Bible, (Nashville: Word Publishing, 1997), page 2019.
 Bob Kollin, Revelation Unlocked, (Springfield, Missouri: 21st Century Press, 2003), page 184.