What does Revelation 19:2 mean?
ESV: for his judgments are true and just; for he has judged the great prostitute who corrupted the earth with her immorality, and has avenged on her the blood of his servants."
NIV: for true and just are his judgments. He has condemned the great prostitute who corrupted the earth by her adulteries. He has avenged on her the blood of his servants."
NASB: BECAUSE HIS JUDGMENTS ARE TRUE AND RIGHTEOUS; for He has judged the great prostitute who was corrupting the earth with her sexual immorality, and HE HAS AVENGED THE BLOOD OF HIS BOND-SERVANTS ON HER.'
CSB: because his judgments are true and righteous, because he has judged the notorious prostitute who corrupted the earth with her sexual immorality; and he has avenged the blood of his servants that was on her hands.
NLT: His judgments are true and just. He has punished the great prostitute who corrupted the earth with her immorality. He has avenged the murder of his servants.'
KJV: For true and righteous are his judgments: for he hath judged the great whore, which did corrupt the earth with her fornication, and hath avenged the blood of his servants at her hand.
NKJV: For true and righteous are His judgments, because He has judged the great harlot who corrupted the earth with her fornication; and He has avenged on her the blood of His servants shed by her.”
Verse Commentary:
John is hearing praises from heaven, celebrating the destruction of Babylon and the imminent return of Christ to earth (Revelation 19:11). Here, the heavenly multitude's song is one of affirmation of God's judgments. They are true. God never makes a mistake when He judges. His judgments are also just; that is, the judged get what they deserve. God judges righteously. Religious Babylon had corrupted the world with her immorality, and she had slain many of God's servants.

In the time of Elijah, Baal worship flourished as King Ahab and Queen Jezebel supported it. They even arranged for the false prophets of Baal to dine in the palace (1 Kings 18:19). The apostate Israelites were so devoted to the worship of Baal that they killed God's prophets with the sword (1 Kings 18:4; 18:13). In response, God displayed His power at Mount Carmel and used Elijah to slay the false prophets (1 Kings 18:20–40). In a similar display of power, God judged Babylon and avenged His martyred servants (Revelation 17—18). Even today in many parts of the world those whose faith is in the one true God experience persecution and even martyrdom at the hands of those who are steeped in false religion.
Verse Context:
Revelation 19:1–5 records praise which rises to God from a great multitude in heaven. The praise follows the fall of Babylon recorded in chapters 17 and 18. Similar praise is reported in Revelation 4:10–11; 5:9–10, 12–13; 7:11–12, and 11:16–18. The praise precedes the marriage supper of the Lamb, as well as the second coming of Christ in glory and the judgment of the nations.
Chapter Summary:
Revelation 19 begins with a multitude in heaven singing a doxology to God. He is praised for judging religious Babylon and avenging the martyrs. They are joined by the twenty-four elders (Revelation 4). Voices cry out joyfully that the Lord reigns and the marriage supper of the Lamb is ready. Then, John sees heaven open and observes Jesus—now coming as the glorious and invincible King of kings and Lord of lords—as He descends from heaven to execute judgment. The armies of earth gather to battle the Lord. The battle concludes with the Antichrist and False Prophet being thrown into the lake of fire and the graphic slaughter of their followers.
Chapter Context:
This chapter describes the victorious second coming of Christ, His victory over the Antichrist and the False Prophet after the fall of Babylon (Revelation 17—18). Christ's first arrival on earth was to redeem (Matthew 2; Luke 2:1–21; John 1:1–14; Galatians 4:1–5). The purpose of His second coming is judgment and the establishment of His reign on earth (Psalm 2). This is separate from the rapture (1 Thessalonians 4:13–17), the event in which Jesus returns in the air to take Christians from earth to be with Him. Jesus' second coming begins the millennial kingdom, leading up to the final judgments and the appearance of the New Jerusalem.
Book Summary:
The word ''revelation'' means ''an unveiling or disclosure.'' This writing unveils future events such as the rapture, three series of judgments that will fall on the earth during the tribulation, the emergence of the Antichrist, the persecution of Israel and her amazing revival, as well as Jesus' second coming with His saints to the earth, the judgment of Satan and his followers, and finally, the eternal state. This content, combined with the original Greek term apokalypsis, is why we now refer to an end-of-the-world scenario as ''an apocalypse.''
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