Revelation 14:15
(15) And another angel . . .--Translate, And another angel came forth out of the temple, &c. It has been asked, "What harvest is this?" It is the gathering of the good seed, the full corn in the ear, into the celestial garner (Mark 4:26-29). The angel who announces that the harvest is ready comes forth from the Temple, the inner shrine, the holy place which was measured off in the sanctuary of the faithful (Revelation 11:1); whereas the angel who calls for the vintage comes forth from the altar (Revelation 14:18).

The angel cries--Put forth (or, send) thy sickle and reap, because the hour is come to reap, because the harvest of the earth is ripe (or, dried); the wheat stalks are dry, and the fields white for harvest (John 4:35). The sickle was put in: the earth was reaped.


There must be some difference between the vintage and the harvest. There is an autumn gladness about the harvest: there are tokens of judgment in the vintage. It is not the sharp sickle alone which is required: the winepress, the winepress of God's wrath, is called into use. An angel from the Temple calls to the Son of man to reap the harvest: an angel from the altar calls to an angel from the Temple to gather in the vintage. The vintage symbolises a harvest of judgment; do not the words respecting Babylon (the wine of the wrath of her fornication, Revelation 14:8) come to the mind and confirm this? The angel rises from the altar, beneath which the murdered saints had cried, "How long?" and proclaims, "The vintage, the hour of vengeance, has come!" And it is not without significance that the angel to whom this cry is addressed comes forth out of the Temple, the safe sanctuary of God's faithful ones, as one who has witnessed their secret sorrows and their sufferings, and is fitted "to recompense tribulation to the troublers of Israel" (2Thessalonians 1:6).

(17) And another angel . . .--Translate, And another angel, . . . having himself also (as well as the Son of man, Revelation 14:14) a sharp sickle.

Verse 15. - And another angel came out of the temple, crying with a loud voice to him that sat on the cloud; another angel; in addition to those already mentioned, not implying that he who sat on the cloud was an angel. Out of the temple, or shrine (ναός); the inner sanctuary of God (cf. Revelation 7:15). The angel acts as the messenger of the will of God to Christ in his capacity of Son of man, because the command is one concerning the times and seasons which the Father hath kept in his own power (Alford). The characteristic "loud voice" (see on vers. 7, 9, etc.). Thrust in thy sickle, and reap: for the time is come for thee to reap; for the harvest of the earth is ripe; send forth thy sickle and reap: for the hour to reap is come; for the harvest of the earth is over ripe (Revised Version). Over ripe, or dried; that is, as Alford explains, perfectly ripe, so that the stalk is dry, the moisture having been lost.

14:14-20 Warnings and judgments not having produced reformation, the sins of the nations are filled up, and they become ripe for judgments, represented by a harvest, an emblem which is used to signify the gathering of the righteous, when ripe for heaven, by the mercy of God. The harvest time is when the corn is ripe; when the believers are ripe for heaven, then the wheat of the earth shall be gathered into Christ's garner. And by a vintage. The enemies of Christ and his church are not destroyed, till by their sin they are ripe for ruin, and then he will spare them no longer. The wine-press is the wrath of God, some terrible calamity, probably the sword, shedding the blood of the wicked. The patience of God towards sinners, is the greatest miracle in the world; but, though lasting, it will not be everlasting; and ripeness in sin is a sure proof of judgment at hand.And another angel came out of the temple,.... Not the Holy Spirit, who, being God omniscient, knows the day and hour of judgment, which is a secret to men and angels, as Napier thinks; since though he dwells in the church as his temple, yet is never called an angel; nor does this angel represent the souls under the altar, who come out from thence, and importunately desire vengeance on the inhabitants of the earth, the worshippers of the beast, who had shed their blood; but rather the mighty angels who shall descend from heaven with Christ, and who shall be employed by him as reapers, to gather in his elect from the four winds, as well as to bind up the tares in bundles, and burn them; unless a set of Gospel ministers, as before, should be intended, who either by divine revelation, or by the signs of the time being come, and observed by them, will know that the harvest, or end of the world, is come; since this angel is said to come out of the temple, the church, which had been measured, and was now opened in heaven, and from whence angels are said to come, Revelation 11:1

crying with a loud voice to him that sat on the cloud: as the first and third angels did, Revelation 14:7 denoting great vehemence and importunity: thrust in thy sickle, and reap: which being spoken by an inferior angel, whether this designs the ministering spirits, or preachers of the word, must be understood not as commanding, nor even directing what should be done, but as beseeching and entreating: see Psalm 132:8. Dr. Lightfoot thinks, and not without reason, that there is here some allusion to the putting in of the sickle, and reaping the first corn in Judea, at the feast of the passover, by the order of the sanhedrim, which sat in the temple; nor did any reap till they had the word given them, "reap", by the messengers of the court, called , "the angels", or messengers "of the sanhedrim": to whom the reaper said, shall I reap? and they say to him, (a), "reap": the reasons follow:

for the time is come for thee to reap; the time of the end of the world, and of the judgment of it, which is fixed by God; and of Christ's coming to judge both quick and dead, and of the first resurrection, or the resurrection of the saints:

for the harvest of the earth is ripe: the measure of the sins of wicked men will now be filled up, and the afflictions of the saints will be accomplished in them, and the number of God's elect will be completed in the effectual calling; they will be all called, and so things will be ripe for the second coming of Christ. There seems to be some reference to Joel 3:13 "put ye in the sickle, for the harvest is ripe": the Jewish doctors ask (b), to whom is this said? R. Phineas, in the name of R. Hilkiah, says, "to the angels"; so the mighty ones, in Revelation 14:11 are by Kimchi interpreted of the angels.

(a) Misn. Menachot, c. 10. sect. 3.((b) Yalkut Simeoni, par. 2. fol. 92. 1.

Revelation 14:14
Top of Page
Top of Page