Revelation 3:9 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Revelation 3:9, NIV: "I will make those who are of the synagogue of Satan, who claim to be Jews though they are not, but are liars--I will make them come and fall down at your feet and acknowledge that I have loved you."

Revelation 3:9, ESV: "Behold, I will make those of the synagogue of Satan who say that they are Jews and are not, but lie—behold, I will make them come and bow down before your feet, and they will learn that I have loved you."

Revelation 3:9, KJV: "Behold, I will make them of the synagogue of Satan, which say they are Jews, and are not, but do lie; behold, I will make them to come and worship before thy feet, and to know that I have loved thee."

Revelation 3:9, NASB: "Behold, Iwill make those of the synagogue of Satan, who say that they are Jews and are not, but lie—I will make them come and bow down before your feet, and make them know that I have loved you."

Revelation 3:9, NLT: "Look, I will force those who belong to Satan's synagogue--those liars who say they are Jews but are not--to come and bow down at your feet. They will acknowledge that you are the ones I love."

Revelation 3:9, CSB: "Note this: I will make those from the synagogue of Satan, who claim to be Jews and are not, but are lying--I will make them come and bow down at your feet, and they will know that I have loved you."

What does Revelation 3:9 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

This is the second time in the letters to the seven churches that the "synagogue of Satan" is mentioned, and the fourth time Satan is referenced (Revelation 2:9; 2:13; 2:24). Apparently, the Jews of Philadelphia, like those of Smyrna, made life hard for the believers in Philadelphia. This is not a blanket reference to all of Judaism, nor all of the Jewish people. Rather, Jesus is indicting a specific group in a specific area. In fact, Jesus said these offenders were Jews in name only. He called them liars. They actually belonged to Satan and served Him.

Perhaps the aggressors tried to force the Christians to be circumcised and to put themselves under the law of Moses, just as Judaizers tried to persuade the churches of Galatia to accept circumcision and submit to the law of Moses (Galatians 1:6–7; 3:1–6). But the Christians at Philadelphia resisted the Judaizers' efforts.

Jesus promised to compel the false Jews to acknowledge the believers' valid faith in Jesus and recognize that Jesus loves the believers. This is most likely a reference to the ultimate victory of good over evil: the day when all false teachers will have to bow to Jesus and confess that He is Lord (Philippians 2:19–11). Christians will witness that triumphant event (Revelation 20:12–15).