And I John saw these things, and heard them. And when I had heard and seen, I fell down to worship before the feet of the angel which showed me these things.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)And I John saw these things . . .—Or rather, And I John am he who hears and sees these things. The words of the angel are confirmed by the words of Christ. Now we have the confirmatory testimony of the seer to the truth of the vision. The declaration reminds us of the opening of the Epistle of St. John: “That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you” (1John 1:1-3). It is no mere dream or ingenious fancy of his own that he has recorded; it is a veritable revelation.
And when I had heard . . .—Or better, When I heard and saw, I fell down to worship before the feet of the angel who was showing me these things. Wonder and awe took possession of the seer, and for the second time he was about to offer unlawful homage to the angel-minister. (Comp. Revelation 19:10.) This twice offered and twice refused worship is full of teaching. To render to all their due is wise and seemly and Christ-like; to offer exaggerated homage to any is to invert God’s order, and to degrade by pretending to exalt man, whose true glory is that he is God’s creation.Revelation 22:8-9. And 1 John saw these things — I, who have committed these revelations to writing for the constant use of the churches, do solemnly declare they are no invention of my own, but what I was an eye and ear witness to, having really seen and heard these things in the prophetic visions granted me, as I have faithfully related them. And when I had heard, I fell down, &c. — And now, my visions appearing to be at an end, I prostrated myself before the angel who had showed me these things — To express the great respect and gratitude I felt for a person who had laid me under such great obligations. See on Revelation 19:10. Then saith he, See thou do it not — The expression, as before, in the original is short and elliptical, as is usual in showing vehement aversion: as if the apostle had said, The angel hindered me again, as he had done once before, informing me that I should not consider him as the author of these prophetic visions, but as a fellow-servant of the prophets; and, as such, employed in the service of God with them: all the praise of the church should be therefore given to God alone, who only is to be acknowledged the author of these Revelations, and who only gives the Spirit of prophecy for the encouragement and consolation of the faithful.
And when I had heard and seen, I fell down to worship before the feet of the angel, ... - As he had done on a former occasion. See the notes on Revelation 19:10. John appears to have been entirely overcome by the extraordinary nature of the revelations made to him, and not improbably entertained some suspicion that it was the Redeemer himself who had manifested himself to him in this remarkable manner.
saw … and heard—A, B, Vulgate, and Syriac transpose these verbs. Translate literally, "I John (was he) who heard and saw these things." It is observable that in Re 19:10, the language is, "I fell before his feet to worship him"; but here, "I fell down to worship (God?) before the feet of the angel." It seems unlikely that John, when once reproved, would fall into the very same error again. Bengel's view, therefore, is probable; John had first intended to worship the angel (Re 19:10), but now only at his feet intends to worship (God). The angel does not even permit this.I John saw these things; I saw the vision.
And heard them; I heard the words spoken to me relating to them.
And when I had heard and seen; the things related in this book, being amazed at them, and filled with joy on account of many of them, and firmly believing the whole as coming from God:
I fell down to worship before the feet of the angel which showed me these things. This is the second time John did so, though warned of it, and rebuked for it, which shows the proneness even of good men to fall into sin again and again; and what a propensity there is in mankind to idolatry; and very likely this might be suffered, that a second reproof might be given, and repeated instructions be on record, to prevent the worshipping of angels, introduced in the first ages of Christianity.And I John saw these things, and heard them. And when I had heard and seen, I fell down to worship before the feet of the angel which shewed me these things.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)8. And I John saw &c.] Lit. and I John [am] he that saw and heard (or “heard and saw”) these things. It is possible to connect these words with the immediately preceding sentence, regarding it, not as a continuation of the angel’s speech, but as the beginning of St John’s reflexion, “Blessed is he that keepeth the words, &c., and [blessed am] I John, who see and hear these things.” It was so understood by St Dionysius of Alexandria in the third century, and this construction is the easiest and smoothest grammatically. But few modern commentators accept this view: it seems inappropriate to the context.
I fell down to worship] As at Revelation 19:10. Some suppose that St John is here repeating his statement of what he did then, but it is far more natural to understand that he did the same again. The words “I come quickly” would even more naturally lead him to think that this angel was “He that is to come,” than the words of that angel (who may or may not have been the same as this) led him to think that he was the God Whose “true sayings” he communicated.Revelation 22:8.  Καὶ ἐγὼ, and I) Dionysius of Alexandria construed this also with μακάριος, blessed, Revelation 22:7 : εἰμὶ, I am, is rather to be understood.
 ἀπέστειλε, sent) The conclusion exactly agrees with the introduction of the book.—V. g.Verse 8. - And I John saw these things, and heard them; literally, and I John [am] the [one] hearing and seeing these things. The absence of the verb (the present participle being used alone) indicates the person to whom the revelation is made, without assigning any specific period as the particular time when the revelation took place. The same statement is made in Revelation 1:1 (which see). "These things" are all that have been related in the book. And when I had heard and seen, I fell down to worship before the feet of the angel which showed me these things; and when I heard and saw, etc. The tense here becomes aorist (vide supra). St. John has once before fallen into the same error, viz. that of paying undue homage to the angel (see on Revelation 19:10). The beatific vision overwhelms him with awe, and he is bowed down with his own humility.
The A.V. overlooks the article with the participle - the one seeing. Hence Rev., correctly, I John am he that heard and saw.
Had heard and seen (ἤκουσα καὶ ἔβλεψα)
Aorist tense. There is no need of rendering it as a pluperfect. Rev., rightly, I heard and saw. The appeal to hearing and seeing is common to all John's writings. See John 1:14; John 19:35; John 21:14; 1 John 1:1, 1 John 1:2; 1 John 4:14.
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