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A Brief Commentary On The Apocalypse by Sylvester Bliss

The Admonition.

|Behold, I come like a thief. Happy is he who watcheth, and keepeth his garments, lest he walk naked, and they see his shame.| Rev.16:15.

|The day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat,| 2 Pet.3:10. The Saviour said to his disciples: |Watch, therefore; for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come,| Matt.24:42. Says Paul: |Yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night; for when they shall say, peace and safety, then sudden destruction cometh, ... and they shall not escape; but ye, brethren, are not in darkness that that day should overtake you as a thief,| 1 Thess.5:1-6.

Thus will the day of the Lord come, as a thief, on those who are careless and indifferent to its approach; but it will not thus overtake those who watch, and keep their garments. Because so many will be deceived by the strange performances of the spirits of demons, and their miracles so delude the multitude, Christ's coming will be to them sudden and unexpected. Therefore the greater necessity for watchfulness. While this is a predicted means for lulling the world to sleep, it is given to the Christian as an indication of the near coming of Christ, whose advent synchronizes with the outpouring of the seventh vial. The blessing pronounced on those who watch, is an intimation that the people of God will be expecting Christ's advent, while others will be taken by surprise: |unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation,| Heb.9:28. |For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, teaching us, that denying ungodliness, and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world; looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God, and our Saviour Jesus Christ,| Titus 2:11-13.

Those who keep their garments, are those who have not |defiled| them with sin, (3:4); they will walk with Christ in white, being worthy; |for the fine linen| in which they are to be arrayed |is the righteousness of saints,| 19:8. To be destitute of this, is to be unclothed; and hence the Saviour says: |I counsel thee to buy of me ... white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear,| 3:18. The intimation is clear, that to be deceived by the unclean spirits, is to lose those robes of righteousness, and to be found naked at Christ's appearing.

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