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HAYDOCK CATHOLIC BIBLE COMMENTARY ON THE NEW TESTAMENT
From the seventh verse of the foregoing chapter, begins as it were the third part of the Apocalypse containing the coming of antichrist, the great day of judgment, the punishment of the wicked, and the eternal happiness of God's elect in heaven, or in the celestial Jerusalem, which S. John describes in this chapter as if it were like a large city, beautified and enriched with gold and all manner of precious stones, &c. Wi.
Ver. 1. New, by their form and qualities, but not by their substance. — The first heaven and first earth was passed away: being changed, not as to their substance, but in their qualities. Ch.
Ver. 2. Coming down from God out of heaven. By the city we must understand its citizens, the Angels and saints. Wi. — Justice, innocence, the good works of the saints, are the ornaments of the inhabitants of this new Jerusalem, the Church triumphant. If the world of the old Adam has appeared so beautiful, so magnificent, good God, what will be the riches of that which is made for Jesus Christ, the second Adam, and for his members! O Jesus! Father of the world to come, render us worthy of this new and everlasting world, and give us a disgust, a mortal hatred, for that which perishes, and which is the cause of our perdition.
Ver. 3. Behold the tabernacle of God with men, inasmuch as God's elect shall there dwell with him for ever and ever. Wi.
Ver. 6. It is done. The state of Christ's Church on earth, and in this world, is now finished; and the time is come to reward the good, and to punish the wicked in the lake burning with fire and brimstone, in hell, with the devils for all eternity. Wi. — This living water is God himself, of which the saints shall be inebriated at the source; i.e. in God himself. Enviable moment, when all the designs of God upon Jesus Christ and upon his Church will be accomplished: but how little thought of now! And how can we hope to be inebriated at this source of God above, if we do not aspire after it whilst we are in this dreary desert here below? He who begins and finishes gratuitously here below the work of our faith, crowns it still more liberally in heaven.
Ver. 9. I will shew thee the bride, the wife of the Lamb: all the Church triumphant in heaven. Wi.
Ver. 16. The city is situate four-square; and by what follows, so as to be a perfect square, though every thing that is quadrangular is not always a square, or perfect square. Wi.
Ver. 17. The measure of a man, which is of an Angel. This seems, without doubt, the sense of it. Wi.
Ver. 22. No temple in it. No need of a temple for divine worship, where God is in such a perfect manner present to all the blessed, where nothing can distract or divert their souls from endless adorations, praises, &c. Wi.
Ver. 23. Needeth not sun nor moon, where there is no vicissitude or succession of day and night, the divine brightness always shining to them. Wi.
Ver. 24. The kings of the earth shall bring their glory; the elect, of all states and conditions, shall now be exalted like kings, or rather infinitely above the glory that we can imagine of any kings in this world. Wi.
Ver. 27. There shall not enter it any thing defiled. This is what we ought always to remember and have in our minds. Wi.