Bible Verse Explanations and Resources


Revelation 14:11

Adam Clarke
Bible Commentary

The smoke of their torment - Still an allusion to the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrha.

Albert Barnes
Notes on the Whole Bible

And the smoke of their torment - The smoke proceeding from their place of torment. This language is probably derived from the account of the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah, Genesis 19:28; “And he (Abraham) looked toward Sodom and Gomorrah, and toward all the land of the plain, and beheld, and lo, the smoke of the country went up as the smoke of a furnace.” The destruction of these cities is regarded as an emblem of the destruction of the wicked, and the smoke that ascended from them as a representation of what ascends from the place where the wicked suffer forever. See the notes on Jude 1:7.

Ascendeth up - Continually rises from that world of woe.

For ever and ever - See the notes on Jude 1:7. This does not indeed affirm that their individual sufferings would be eternal, since it is only a declaration that “the smoke of their torment ascends,” but it is such language as would be used on the supposition that they would suffer forever, and as can be explained only on that supposition. It implies that their torments continued, and were the cause of that ascending smoke; that is, that they were tormented while it ascended; and, as this is declared to be “forever and ever,” it implies that the sufferings of the wicked will be eternal: and this is such language as would not, and could not have been used in a revelation from God, unless the punishment of the wicked is eternal. Compare the notes on Matthew 25:46.

And they have no rest day nor night - “Day and night” include all time; and hence, the phrase is used to denote perpetuity - “always.” The meaning here is, that they never have any rest - any interval of pain. This is stated as a circumstance strongly expressive of the severity of their torment. Here, rest comes to the sufferer. The prisoner in his cell lies down on his bed, though hard, and sleeps; the overworked slave has also intervals of sleep; the eyes of the mourner are locked in repose, and for moments, if not hours, he forgets his sorrows; no pain that we endure on earth can be so certain and prolonged that nature will not, sooner or later, find the luxury of sleep, or will find rest in the grave. But it will be one of the bitterest ingredients in the cup of woe, in the world of despair, that this luxury will be denied forever, and that they who enter that gloomy prison sleep no more, never know the respite of a moment, never even lose the consciousness of their heavy doom. Oh how different from the condition of sufferers here! And oh how sad and strange that any of our race will persevere in sin, and go down to those unmitigated and unending sorrows!

Who worship the beast and his image - See the notes on Revelation 13:4, Revelation 13:15.

And whosoever receiveth the mark of his name - See the notes on Revelation 13:17. The meaning here is, that such worshippers will receive the punishment which other idolaters and sinners do. No exception will be made in favor of an idolater, though he worships idols under the forms of an abused Christianity; none will be made in favor of a sinner because he practiced iniquity under the garb of religion.

Matthew Henry
Concise Bible Commentary
The progress of the Reformation appears to be here set forth. The four proclamations are plain in their meaning; that all Christians may be encouraged, in the time of trial, to be faithful to their Lord. The gospel is the great means whereby men are brought to fear God, and to give glory to him. The preaching of the everlasting gospel shakes the foundations of antichrist in the world, and hastens its downfal. If any persist in being subject to the beast, and in promoting his cause, they must expect to be for ever miserable in soul and body. The believer is to venture or suffer any thing in obeying the commandments of God, and professing the faith of Jesus. May God bestow this patience upon us. Observe the description of those that are and shall be blessed: such as die in the Lord; die in the cause of Christ, in a state of union with Christ; such as are found in Christ when death comes. They rest from all sin, temptation, sorrow, and persecution; for there the wicked cease from troubling, there the weary are at rest. Their works follow them: do not go before as their title, or purchase, but follow them as proofs of their having lived and died in the Lord: the remembrance of them will be pleasant, and the reward far above all their services and sufferings. This is made sure by the testimony of the Spirit, witnessing with their spirits, and the written word.
Ellen G. White
Testimonies for the Church, vol. 8, 197

The ministers of the popular churches will not allow the truth to be presented to the people from their pulpits. The enemy leads them to resist the truth with bitterness and malice. Falsehoods are manufactured. Christ's experience with the Jewish rulers is repeated. Satan strives to eclipse every ray of light shining from God to His people. He works through the ministers as he worked through the priests and rulers in the days of Christ. Will those who know the truth join his party, to hinder, embarrass, and turn aside those who are trying to work in God's appointed way to advance His work, to plant the standard of truth in the regions of darkness? 8T 197.1

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Ellen G. White
Gospel Workers 1915, 161

The thought that the righteousness of Christ is imputed to us, not because of any merit on our part, but as a free gift from God, is a precious thought. The enemy of God and man is not willing that this truth should be clearly presented; for he knows that if the people receive it fully, his power will be broken. If he can control minds so that doubt and unbelief and darkness shall compose the experience of those who claim to be the children of God, he can overcome them with temptation. GW 161.1

That simple faith which takes God at His word should be encouraged. God's people must have that faith which will lay hold of divine power; “for by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God.” [Ephesians 2:8.] Those who believe that God for Christ's sake has forgiven their sins, should not, through temptation, fail to press on to fight the good fight of faith. Their faith should grow stronger until their Christian life, as well as their words, shall declare, “The blood of Jesus Christ ...cleanseth us from all sin.” [1 John 1:7.] GW 161.2

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Ellen G. White
SDA Bible Commentary, vol. 7 (EGW), 949

4. See EGW on John 14:15; Romans 3:31. 7BC 949.1

6 (see EGW on 2 Corinthians 5:17; Revelation 14:4). Walking as Christ Walked—Those who walk even as Christ walked, who are patient, gentle, kind, meek and lowly in heart, those who yoke up with Christ and lift His burdens, who yearn for souls as He yearned for them—these will enter into the joy of their Lord. They will see with Christ the travail of His soul, and be satisfied. Heaven will triumph, for the vacancies made in heaven by the fall of Satan and his angels will be filled by the redeemed of the Lord (The Review and Herald, May 29, 1900). 7BC 949.2

The Imitation of Christ—True religion is the imitation of Christ. Those who follow Christ will deny self, take up the cross, and walk in His footsteps. Following Christ means obedience to all His commandments. No soldier can be said to follow his commander unless he obeys orders. Christ is our model. To copy Jesus, full of love and tenderness and compassion, will require that we draw near to Him daily. O how God has been dishonored by His professed representatives (Letter 31a, 1894)! 7BC 949.3

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Ellen G. White
SDA Bible Commentary, vol. 7 (EGW), 978-81

(Vs. 9-12; see EGW on ch. 16:13-16.) The Signet of Heaven—John saw a Lamb on Mount Zion, and with Him 144,000 having His Father's name written in their foreheads. They bore the signet of heaven. They reflected the image of God. They were full of the light and the glory of the Holy One. If we would have the image and superscription of God upon us, we must separate ourselves from all iniquity. We must forsake every evil way, and then we must trust our cases in the hands of Christ. While we are working out our own salvation with fear and trembling, God will work in us to will and to do of His own good pleasure (The Review and Herald, March 19, 1889). 7BC 978.1

Christ Formed Within—[Revelation 14:1-3 quoted.] Why were they so specially singled out? Because they had to stand with a wonderful truth right before the whole world, and receive their opposition, and while receiving this opposition they were to remember that they were sons and daughters of God, that they must have Christ formed within them the hope of glory (Manuscript 13, 1888). 7BC 978.2

Eternal Interests Supreme—Those who have in their foreheads the seal of the infinite God will regard the world and its attractions as subordinate to eternal interests (The Review and Herald, July 13, 1897). 7BC 978.3

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