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The Book of Revelation
Chapter Nineteen
One Bahá'í's Concept

CONCEPT BOX

This chapter is about Fulfillment.

    Say: O peoples of the earth! By the righteousness of God! Whatever ye have been promised in the Books of your Lord, the Ruler of the Day of Return, hath appeared and been made manifest.
    (Bahá'u'lláh,
    Tablets of Bahá'u'lláh,
    p.231)
    Beware lest the changes and chances of the world hold you back from Him who is the Sovereign Truth. Ere long will everything visible perish and only that which that been revealed by God, the Lord of lords, shall endure.
    (Bahá'u'lláh,
    Tablets of Bahá'u'lláh,
    p.233)
    The Great Being, wishing to reveal the prerequisites of the peace and tranquillity of the world and the advancement of its peoples, hath written: The time must come when the imperative necessity for the holding of a vast, an all-embracing assemblage of men will be universally realized. The rulers and kings of the earth must needs attend it, and, participating in its deliberations, must consider such ways and means as will lay the foundations of the world's Great Peace amongst men. Such a peace demandeth that the Great Powers should resolve, for the sake of the tranquillity of the peoples of the earth, to be fully reconciled among themselves. Should any king take up arms against another, all should unitedly arise and prevent him. If this be done, the nations of the world will no longer require any armaments, except for the purpose of preserving the security of their realms and of maintaining internal order within their territories. This will ensure the peace and composure of every people, government and nation. We fain would hope that the kings and rulers of the earth, the mirrors of the gracious and almighty name of God, may attain unto this station, and shield mankind from the onslaught of tyranny.

    Likewise He saith: Among the things which are conducive to unity and concord and will cause the whole earth to be regarded as one country is that the divers languages be reduced to one language and in like manner the scripts used in the world be confined to a single script. It is incumbent upon all nations to appoint some men of understanding and erudition to convene a gathering and through joint consultation choose one language from among the varied existing languages, or create a new one, to be taught to the children in all the schools of the world.

    The day is approaching when all the peoples of the world will have adopted one universal language and one common script. When this is achieved, to whatsoever city a man may journey, it shall be as if he were entering his own home. These things are obligatory and absolutely essential. It is incumbent upon every man of insight and understanding to strive to translate that which hath been written into reality and action.

    (Bahá'u'lláh,
    Tablets of Bahá'u'lláh,
    p. 165)

Bible Verses

[1] And after these things I heard a great voice of much people in heaven, saying, Alleluia; Salvation, and glory, and honour, and power, unto the Lord our God:

One Bahá'í's Concept

V.1 After the city was gone, John heard the great voice of many people in heaven rejoicing and honoring the glory and power of God. This is the beginning of a marvelous new civilization that will lift mankind to a higher level of scientific and spiritual attainment than has ever before been possible.

    Verily, Thou art the Lord of Strength, Thou art potent to ordain what so ever Thou willest and within Thy Grasp Thou holdest the reins of all created things. No God is there but Thee, the All-Powerful, the All-Knowing, the All-Wise.
    (Bahá'u'lláh,
    Tablets of Bahá'u'lláh,
    p.117)
[2] 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.

V.2 God is true and righteous in His judgment, especially of the great whore who profaned the religions of God, which was the defilement of the laws of God. The Laws of God themselves are described as the Pure Woman, the Bride (Rev.21:9) and the New Jerusalem, but when defiled they become the great whore.
    The people aforetime joined partners with God, though they professed belief in His unity; and although they were the most ignorant amongst men, they considered themselves the most accomplished. But, as a token of divine retribution upon those heedless ones, their erroneous beliefs and pursuits have, in this Day of Judgement, been made clear and evident to every man of discernment and understanding.
    (Bahá'u'lláh,
    Tablets of Bahá'u'lláh,
    p. 124)
[3] And again they said, Alleluia. And her smoke rose up for ever and ever.

V.3 Those that have recognized God and His Manifestation are joyous but memory (smoke) of the city (Babylon) will never be forgotten.
[4] And the four and twenty elders and the four beasts fell down and worshipped God that sat on the throne, saying, Amen; Alleluia.

V.4 The four and twenty elders, were the appointed disciples of the Báb (Letters of the Living) and Bahá'u'lláh (Hands of the Cause) and the four beasts are kings or rulers who will help to spread the message of Bahá'u'lláh.
    These "first Letters generated from the Primal Point," this "company of angels arrayed before God on the Day of His coming," these "Repositories of His Mystery," these "Springs that have welled out from the Source of His Revelation," these first companions who, in the words of the Persian Bayan, "enjoy nearest access to God," these "Luminaries that have, from everlasting, bowed down, and will everlastingly continue to bow down, before the Celestial Throne," and lastly these "elders" mentioned in the Book of Revelation as "sitting before God on their seats," "clothed in white raiment" and wearing on their heads "crowns of gold" -- these were, ere their dispersal, summoned to the Báb's presence, Who addressed to them His parting words, entrusted to each a specific task, and assigned to some of them as the proper field of their activities their native provinces.
    (Shoghi Effendi,
    God Passes By,
    p. 7)
[5] And a voice came out of the throne, saying, Praise our God, all ye his servants, and ye that fear him, both small and great.

V.5 A voice (that of Bahá'u'lláh) came from the throne, saying Praise God, all servants, and all that fear Him, both small and great.
    Rejoice, then, O ye beloved of the Lord and His chosen ones, and ye the children of God and His people, raise your voice and laud and magnify the Lord, the Most High: for His light hath beamed forth, His signs have appeared, and the billows of His rising ocean have scattered on every shore many a precious pearl.
    ('Abdu'l-Bahá,
    Bahá'í World Faith,
    p.351)
[6] And I heard as it were the voice of a great multitude, and as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of mighty thunderings, saying, Alleluia: for the Lord God omnipotent reigneth.

V.6 John heard the great multitude, from all countries, all languages, giving Praise to God, saying 'Alleluia the Lord God reigns'. The thunderings of the new message, the Sacred Law of God, which Bahá'u'lláh has brought.
    Through Him the light of unity hath shone forth above the horizon of the world, and the law of oneness hath been revealed amidst the nations, who, with radiant faces, have turned towards the Supreme Horizon, and acknowledged that which the Tongue of Utterance hath spoken in the kingdom of His knowledge: "Earth and heaven, glory and dominion, are God's, the Omnipotent, the Almighty, the Lord of grace abounding!"
    (Bahá'u'lláh,
    Epistle to the Son of the Wolf,
    p. 2)
[7] Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready.

V.7 They cried 'Let us be glad and rejoice, as the parable of the marriage feast, a symbol of the beginning of the New Law of God, is about to take place. Christ was warning people to be prepared for His return. Those who are called to investigate and partake of the new message are those who partake of the 'marriage supper'.
[8] And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints.

V.8 It was granted that the bride wear the fine white linen which is clean new and fresh, she is the symbol of the New Law, and the white linen, a symbol of righteousness.
    To Him (Bahá'u'lláh), the Author of the Apocalypse had alluded as the "Glory of God," as "Alpha and Omega," "the Beginning and the End," "the First and the Last." Identifying His Revelation with the "third woe," he, moreover, had extolled His Law as "a new heaven and a new earth," as the "Tabernacle of God," as the "Holy City," as the "New Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband." To His Day Jesus Christ Himself had referred as "the regeneration when the Son of Man shall sit in the throne of His glory." To the hour of His advent St. Paul had alluded as the hour of the "last trump," the "trump of God," whilst St. Peter had spoken of it as the "Day of God, wherein the heavens being on fire shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat." His Day he, furthermore, had described as "the times of refreshing," "the times of restitution of all things, which God hath spoken by the mouth of all His holy Prophets since the world began."
    (Shoghi Effendi,
    God Passes By,
    p. 95)
[9] And he saith unto me, Write, Blessed are they which are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb. And he saith unto me, These are the true sayings of God.

V.9 The voice told John to write: 'Blessed are they that are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb'. He also said that 'these are the true sayings of God'.
    And further We have said: "He Who is the Father is come, and the Son (Jesus Christ), in the holy vale, crieth out: 'Here am I, here am I, O Lord, my God!', whilst Sinai circleth round the House, and the Burning Bush calleth aloud: 'The All-Bounteous is come mounted upon the clouds! Blessed is he that draweth nigh unto Him, and woe betide them that are far away.'
    (Bahá'u'lláh,
    Epistle to the Son of the Wolf,
    p. 57)
[10] And I fell at his feet to worship him. And he said unto me, See thou do it not: I am thy fellow servant, and of thy brethren that have the testimony of Jesus: worship God: for the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.

V.10 John was so impressed by what the angel had shown him that he fell at his feet to worship him, the angel told him: "see thou do it not" do not worship me as I am only as you are, turn to God and worship Him. Christ foretold of the One to come, that would reveal truth in accordance with the greater need and maturity of mankind.
    'Verily, there is none other God but Me, the Ever-Forgiving, the Most Merciful!' We, in truth, have sent Him Whom We aided with the Holy Spirit (Jesus Christ) that He may announce unto you this Light that hath shone forth from the horizon of the will of your Lord, the Most Exalted, the All-Glorious, and Whose signs have been revealed in the West. Set your faces towards Him (Bahá'u'lláh) on this Day which God hath exalted above all other days, and whereon the All-Merciful hath shed the splendour of His effulgent glory upon all who are in heaven and all who are on earth. Arise thou to serve God and help His Cause.
    (Bahá'u'lláh,
    The Proclamation of Bahá'u'lláh,
    p. 18)
[11] And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war.

V.11 John saw heaven open, and saw a white horse. In the sixth chapter the white horse is mentioned which signifies theology, however this horse signifies riding forth with pure and heavenly qualities. Its rider is Bahá'u'lláh.

    The beautiful and glorious person riding upon the white horse is the Greatest name, (Bahá'u'lláh) and the horse means also His glorious body.
    ('Abdu'l-Bahá,
    Tablets of 'Abdu'l-Bahá, Vol 3,
    p.681)
[12] His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on his head were many crowns; and he had a name written, that no man knew, but he himself.

V.12 His eyes were as a flame of fire: many have said that they could not look at His eyes, others have said that He could read your very soul. On His head were many crowns. God gave Him this attribute, plus a name written, and attributes which only Bahá'u'lláh could know about. The Manifestations of God are in a different plane than we are, one that we can never reach.
    The praise which hath dawned from Thy most august Self, and the glory which hath shone forth from Thy most effulgent Beauty, rest upon Thee, O Thou Who art the Manifestation of Grandeur, and King of Eternity, and the Lord of all who are in heaven and earth! I testify that through Thee the sovereignty of God and His dominion and the majesty of God and His grandeur were revealed, and the Daystar of ancient splendor have shed their radiance in the heaven of Thy irrevocable decree, and the Beauty of the Unseen hath shone forth above the horizon of creation.
    (Bahá'u'lláh,
    from the Tablet of Visitation
    p.230 Bahá'í Prayers)
[13] And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God.

V.13 He was clothed in a vesture which was dipped in blood, means more than clothing, it is the sacrificing of His life, totally to bring 'The Word of God'. Bahá'u'lláh spent forty years in prison, and went through terrible trials of abuse.
[14] And the armies which were in heaven followed him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean.

V.14 The armies of God are the Concourse on High, those who have been martyred. Their clothing is now fine linen, white and clean, meaning that they are free from sin. They are following Bahá'u'lláh on white horses, which indicates power, and are ready to serve.
    After the revelation of this blessed verse it is as though thou hast been born anew from thy mother's womb. Say: Thou art free from sin and error. Truly God hath purged thee with the living waters of His utterance in His Most Great Prison. We entreat Him -- blessed and exalted is He -- to graciously confirm thee in extolling Him and in magnifying His glory and to strengthen thee through the power of His invisible hosts. Verily, He is the Almighty, the Omnipotent.
    (Bahá'u'lláh,
    Tablets of Bahá'u'lláh,
    p. 77)
[15] And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God.

V.15 Out of His mouth was a sharp sword, this sword of truth is 'The Word of God'. The rod of iron, the 'Law of God' is strong and firm and just, which God has revealed to Bahá'u'lláh for this new cycle. The "winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God" symbolizes the great 'Day of Judgment' at the end of the old cycle.
    .what may well rank as the most signal act of His ministry -- the promulgation of the Kitáb-i-Aqdas. Alluded to in the Kitáb-i-Íqán; the principal repository of that Law which the Prophet Isaiah had anticipated, and which the writer of the Apocalypse had described as the "new heaven" and the "new earth," as "the Tabernacle of God," as the "Holy City," as the "Bride," the "New Jerusalem coming down from God," this "Most Holy Book," whose provisions must remain inviolate for no less than a thousand years, and whose system will embrace the entire planet, may well be regarded as the brightest emanation of the mind of Bahá'u'lláh, as the Mother Book of His Dispensation, and the Charter of His New World Order.
    (Shoghi Effendi,
    God Passes By,
    p. 213)
[16] And he hath on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS.

V.16 Another part of the vesture that God has given Him is the title 'KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS'. Bahá'u'lláh has been given a very high role by God as the one who sits on the throne, as the Supreme Manifestation of God, the Glory of God.
    This is the day whereon every man endued with perception hath discovered the fragrance of the breeze of the All-Merciful in the world of creation, and every man of insight hath hastened unto the living waters of the mercy of his Lord, the King of Kings.
    (Bahá'u'lláh,
    Epistle to the Son of the Wolf,
    p. 101)
    In this station, were He Who is the Embodiment of the End to say: "Verily, I am the Point of the Beginning", He would indeed be speaking the truth. And were He to say: "I am other than Him", this would be equally true. Likewise, were He to proclaim: "Verily, I am the Lord of heaven and earth", or "the King of kings", or "the Lord of the realm above", or Muhammad, or 'Ali, or their descendants, or aught else, He would indeed be proclaiming the truth of God. He, verily, ruleth over all created things and standeth supreme above all besides Him. Hast thou not heard what hath been said aforetime: "Muhammad is our first, Muhammad our last, Muhammad our all"? And elsewhere: "They all proceed from the same Light"?
    (Bahá'u'lláh,
    Gems of Divine Mysteries: Verse 40)
[17] And I saw an angel standing in the sun; and he cried with a loud voice, saying to all the fowls that fly in the midst of heaven, Come and gather yourselves together unto the supper of the great God;

V.17 John saw an angel, standing in the light of heaven, calling us as "fowls that fly in the midst of heaven", to come together to partake of the supper of the great God. This Angel is identified with the Fourth Angel which is the Angel of the Zoroastrian Religion which of the seven religions is the one most identified with the sun.

The supper refers to the consequences (which will continue for many years) of the greatest war which mankind has ever known and which will then require mankind's utmost and long effort to reconstruct the world.

    They must put away the weapons of war, and turn to the instruments of universal reconstruction.
    (Bahá'u'lláh,
    Epistle to the Son of the Wolf,
    p. 30)
    Great is the station of man. Great must also be his endeavours for the rehabilitation of the world and the well-being of nations. I beseech the One true God to graciously confirm thee in that which beseemeth man's station.
    (Bahá'u'lláh,
    Tablets of Bahá'u'lláh,
    p. 174)
[18] That ye may eat the flesh of kings, and the flesh of captains, and the flesh of mighty men, and the flesh of horses, and of them that sit on them, and the flesh of all men, both free and bond, both small and great.

V.18 This verse has another unusual symbolic parallel to the Zoroastrian Faith in consideration of its practice of leaving the dead in "Cities of the Dead" for their flesh to be eaten by birds of prey. The deeper meaning, of course, has to do with spiritual significances.
    The peoples of ancient Persia believed that earth-burial was not even permissible; that such burial, to a certain degree, would block the coursings and journeyings required by nature. For this reason they built Towers of Silence open to the sky, on the mountain tops, and lay the dead therein on the surface of the ground. But they failed to observe that burial in the earth doth not prevent the natural travellings and coursings which are an exigency of creation -- that rather, earth-burial, besides permitting the natural march of phenomena, offereth other benefits as well.
    ('Abdu'l-Bahá,
    Summon up Remembrance,
    p. 175)
[19] And I saw the beast, and the kings of the earth, and their armies, gathered together to make war against him that sat on the horse, and against his army.

V.19 John saw the beast, those who oppose Bahá'u'lláh. God is very angry all through the Writings about the cruelty of those who inflicted harm to His loved ones. This is about the opposition that was raised against Bahá'u'lláh. Many who refused to accept His authority like the Persian prime minister, as well as the false prophet Karim Khan (see Rev.16:13), and the many kings and rulers that Bahá'u'lláh wrote to tell them of His station, and what would happen to their kingdom if they did not respond. All met with disaster.
    Ye are but vassals, O kings of the earth! He Who is the King of Kings hath appeared, arrayed in His most wondrous glory, and is summoning you unto Himself, the Help in Peril, the Self-Subsisting. Take heed lest pride deter you from recognizing the Source of Revelation, lest the things of this world shut you out as by a veil from Him Who is the Creator of heaven.

    By the righteousness of God! It is not Our wish to lay hands on your kingdoms. Our mission is to seize and possess the hearts of men.

    (Bahá'u'lláh,
    Gleanings from the Writings of Bahá'u'lláh,
    p. 211)
[20] And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived them that had received the mark of the beast, and them that worshipped his image. These both were cast alive into a lake of fire burning with brimstone.

V.20 The beast was taken and with him the false prophet Karim Khan, (a symbol of all the false teachings we see in the world) to be thrown out. People no longer will put up with the lies and injustice that they see. All this is thrown into the lake of fire burning with brimstone.

As pointed out several times before, the "mark of the beast" is the character of those who commit themselves to the image of religion profaned.

    Erelong they will perceive the consequences of what their hands have wrought in the Day of God." "This is the Day," He again has written, "whereon the earth shall tell out her tidings. The workers of iniquity are her burdens. The Crier hath cried out, and men have been torn away, so great hath been the fury of His wrath.
    (Bahá'u'lláh,
    quoted by Shoghi Effendi,
    The World Order of Bahá'u'lláh,
    p. 194)
[21] And the remnant were slain with the sword of him that sat upon the horse, which sword proceeded out of his mouth: and all the fowls were filled with their flesh.

V.21 As explained in verse 11, He Who sits upon the horse is Bahá'u'lláh and the sword from His mouth is of course His teachings. Therefore this states that His Teachings will prevail and that remmanent which survive the Great War but still struggle against Him will become spiritually dead as symbolized by their being devoured by the Zorastrian birds of prey in the Towers of Silence.
    We have truly revealed the signs, demonstrated the irrefutable testimonies and have summoned all men unto the straight Path. Among the people there are those who have turned away and repudiated the truth, others have pronounced judgement against Us without any proof or evidence. The first to turn away from Us have been the world's spiritual leaders in this age -- they that call upon Us in the daytime and in the night season and mention My Name while resting on their lofty thrones. However, when I revealed Myself unto men they rose against Me in such wise that even the stones groaned and lamented bitterly.
    (Bahá'u'lláh,
    Tablets of Bahá'u'lláh,
    p.253)

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