Poole on Revelation 4:11: Response to the Call to Worship, Part 2

Verse 11:[1] (Rev. 5:12) Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: (Gen. 1:1; Acts 17:24; Eph. 3:9; Col. 1:16; Rev. 10:6) for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created.

[Saying] The words of the living Creatures and of the Elders are the same, with only the context and form of the prayer changed (Cotterius).

[Thou art worthy, etc.] That is to say, We rightly praise thee, etc. (Durham). Thou art worthy, whom all, Angels and men, should honor, etc. (Menochius).

[To receive…power, δύναμιν] Strength, or potency (Drusius, Piscator), that is, metonymically, the praise and acknowledgement of thy power (Grotius, Piscator), just as the Hebrews also use עוֹז, strength or majesty.[2] Consult what is on Revelation 11:17 (Grotius). Or, substantial and solid praise (Drusius). Others: He here understands a revelation of power, metaphorically; which is, as it were, the reception of that; so that the sense might be, Thou art worthy who receivest greatness, so that thou mightest subject all things to thyself. Thus Isaiah 51:9, put on strength. Compare Revelation 5:12 and 11:17 (Gomar).

[For thou hast created all things (according to thy power, wisdom, goodness, etc., and hence great art thou, the Lord of all, etc. [Durham]: In vain [therefore] do the Jews hold us in contempt, since we worship no other God than the Artificer of the World and its parts, whom the Jews also say is their God [Grotius]), and because of (or, through [Beza, Piscator]) thy will (that is, because thus it seemed to thee [Beza, similarly Durham]; διὰ τὸ θέλημά, because of, or for the sake of, thy will, in the place of, διὰ τοῦ θελήματος, through thy will [Beza, Piscator]: Thus he is happy διὰ τύχην, through fortune, or by chance, Aristotle’s Nicomachean Ethics 1:9 [Beza]) they were (or, are [Beza, Piscator], they appeared, they received essence and existence, when thou didst create them [Menochius]) and were created] They were already men, because thou hadst willed; and they were created, that is, created again through Christ. See on Revelation 3:14. Our Writers also are wont to make use of the Neuter gender when they speak of Men. See Ephesians 1:10. Here is fulfilled what was predicted in Isaiah 24:23. It is the same as that which the Jerusalem Church says with the Apostles leading, Acts 4:24 out of Nehemiah 9:6 (Grotius). There is here an assertion and extolling of the supreme dominion of God over the creatures, inasmuch as His sole rule of acting was His own good pleasure, and the single goal was His own glory, etc. (Durham). There was no external cause being added, but His own will drove Him; beyond which to seek any cause is of gross ignorance, and of arrogant impiety (Forbes). And this reason powerfully concludes, For He alone, of whom, and because of whom, are all things, ought to carry off all honor from all (Forbes, similarly Durham).

For thou hast created all things:All the praises, homages, and acknowledgments of all the creatures is thy due; as thou art he who gavest the first being to all creatures, and therefore gavest it them, that they might praise, honour, serve, and obey thee.

[1] Greek: Ἄξιος εἶ, Κύριε, λαβεῖν τὴν δόξαν καὶ τὴν τιμὴν καὶ τὴν δύναμιν· ὅτι σὺ ἔκτισας τὰ πάντα, καὶ διὰ τὸ θέλημά σου εἰσὶ καὶ ἐκτίσθησαν. [2] For example, Psalm 29:1: “Give unto the Lord, O ye mighty, give unto the Lord glory and strength (וָעֹז).


Dr. Steven Dilday holds a BA in Religion and Philosophy from Campbell University, a Master of Arts in Religion from Westminster Theological Seminary (Philadelphia), and both a Master of Divinity and a  Ph.D. in Puritan History and Literature from Whitefield Theological Seminary.  He is also the translator of Matthew Poole's Synopsis of Biblical Interpreters and Bernardinus De Moor’s Didactico-Elenctic Theology.




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