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Revelation 2:23

    Revelation 2:23 Translations

    King James Version (KJV)

    And I will kill her children with death; and all the churches shall know that I am he which searcheth the reins and hearts: and I will give unto every one of you according to your works.

    American King James Version (AKJV)

    And I will kill her children with death; and all the churches shall know that I am he which searches the reins and hearts: and I will give to every one of you according to your works.

    American Standard Version (ASV)

    And I will kill her children with death; and all the churches shall know that I am he that searcheth the reins and hearts: and I will give unto each one of you according to your works.

    Basic English Translation (BBE)

    And I will put her children to death; and all the churches will see that I am he who makes search into the secret thoughts and hearts of men: and I will give to every one of you the reward of your works.

    Webster's Revision

    And I will kill her children with death; and all the churches shall know that I am he that searcheth the reins and hearts: and I will give unto each one of you according to your works.

    World English Bible

    I will kill her children with Death, and all the assemblies will know that I am he who searches the minds and hearts. I will give to each one of you according to your deeds.

    English Revised Version (ERV)

    And I will kill her children with death; and all the churches shall know that I am he which searcheth the reins and hearts: and I will give unto each one of you according to your works.

    Definitions for Revelation 2:23

    Reins - Innermost parts of man.

    Clarke's Commentary on Revelation 2:23

    And I will kill her children with death - "That is, I will certainly destroy her offspring and memory, and thereby ruin her designs. Jezebel's two sons, being both kings were both slain; and after that, all the seventy sons of Ahab; (2 Kings 10:1); in all which the hand of God was very visible. In the same manner God predicts the destruction of the heretics and heresies referred to; see Revelation 2:16. It should seem by the expression, I am he which searcheth the reins and the hearts, that these heretics lurked about, and sowed their pernicious doctrines secretly. But our Savior tells them that it was in vain, for he had power to bring their deeds to light, having that Divine power of searching into the Evilly and affections of men; and hereby he would show both them and us that he is, according to his title, The Son of God; and hath such eyes to pry into their actions, that, like a fire, they will search into every thing, and burn up the chaff which cannot stand his trial; so that the depths of Satan, mentioned in the next verse, to which this alludes, (Christ assuming here this title purposely) shall avail nothing to those who think by their secret craft to undermine the Christian religion; he will not only bring to light, but baffle all their evil intentions. See Revelation 17:9.

    Barnes' Notes on Revelation 2:23

    And I will kill her children with death - A strong Hebraistic mode of expression, meaning that he would certainly destroy them. It has been made a question whether the word "children" here is to be taken literally or figuratively. The word itself would admit of either interpretation; and there is nothing in the connection by which its meaning here can be determined. If it is to be taken literally, it is in accordance with what is often threatened in the Scriptures, that children shall be visited with calamity for the sins of parents, and with what often occurs in fact, that they do thus suffer. For it is no uncommon thing that whole families are made desolate on account of the sin and folly of the parent. See the notes on Romans 5:19. If it is to be taken figuratively, then it refers to those who had imbibed her doctrines, and who, of course, would suffer in the punishment which would follow from the propagation of such doctrines. The reference in the word "death" here would seem to be to some heavy judgment, by plague, famine, or sword, by which they would be cut off.

    And all the churches shall know, ... - That is, the design of this judgment will be so apparent that it will convince all that I know what is in the hearts of people, even the secret acts of wickedness that are concealed from human view.

    I am he which searcheth the reins and hearts - This is clearly a claim to omniscience; and as it is the Lord Jesus who speaks in all these epistles, it is a full proof that he claims this for himself. There is nothing which more clearly pertains to God than the power of searching the heart, and nothing that is more constantly claimed by him as his special prerogative, 1 Chronicles 28:9; Psalm 7:9; Psalm 11:4; Psalm 44:21; Psalm 139:2; Proverbs 15:3; Jeremiah 11:20; Jeremiah 17:10; Jeremiah 20:12; Jeremiah 32:19; Hebrews 4:13. The word "reins" - νεφροὺς nephrous - means, literally, "the kidney," and is commonly used in the plural to denote the kidneys, or the loins. In the Scriptures it is used to denote the inmost mind, the secrets of the soul; probably because the parts referred to by the word are as hidden as any other part of the frame, and would seem to be the repository of the more secret affections of the mind. It is not to be supposed that it is taught in the Scriptures that the reins are the real seat of any of the affections or passions; but there is no more impropriety in using the term in a popular signification than there is in using the word "heart," which all continue to use, to denote the seat of love.

    And I will give unto every one of you according to your works - To every one of you; not only to those who have embraced these opinions, but to all the church. This is the uniform rule laid down in the Bible by which God will judge people.