Revelation 5:3
Parallel Verses
New American Standard Bible
And no one in heaven or on the earth or under the earth was able to open the book or to look into it.

King James Bible
And no man in heaven, nor in earth, neither under the earth, was able to open the book, neither to look thereon.

Darby Bible Translation
And no one was able in the heaven, or upon the earth, or underneath the earth, to open the book, or to regard it.

World English Bible
No one in heaven above, or on the earth, or under the earth, was able to open the book, or to look in it.

Young's Literal Translation
and no one was able in the heaven, nor upon the earth, nor under the earth, to open the scroll, nor to behold it.

Revelation 5:3 Parallel
Commentary
Barnes' Notes on the Bible

And no man in heaven - No one - οὐδεὶς oudeis. There is no limitation in the original to man. The idea is, that there was no one in heaven - evidently alluding to the created beings there - who could open the volume. Is it not taught here that angels cannot penetrate the future, and disclose what is to come? Are not their faculties limited in this respect like those of man?

Nor in earth - Among all classes of people - sages, divines, prophets, philosophers - who among those have ever been able to penetrate the future, and disclose what is to come?

Neither under the earth - These divisions compose, in common language, the universe: what is in heaven above; what is on the earth; and whatever there is under the earth - the abodes of the dead. May there not be an allusion here to the supposed science of necromancy, and an assertion that even the dead cannot penetrate the future, and disclose what is to come? Compare the notes on Isaiah 8:19. In all these great realms no one advanced who was qualified to undertake the office of making a disclosure of what the mysterious scroll might contain.

Was able to open the book - Had ability - ἠδύνατε ēdunate - to do it. It was a task beyond their power. Even if anyone had been found who had a rank and a moral character which might have seemed to justify the effort, there was no one who had the power of reading what was recorded respecting coming events.

Neither to look thereon - That is, so to open the seals as to have a view of what was written therein. That it was not beyond their power merely to see the book is apparent from the fact that John himself saw it in the hand of him that sat on the throne; and it is evident also Revelation 5:5 that in that sense the elders saw it. But no one could prevail to inspect the contents, or so have access to the interior of the volume as to be able to see what was written there. It could be seen, indeed Revelation 5:1, that it was written on both sides of the parchment, but what the writing was no one could know.

Revelation 5:3 Parallel Commentaries

Library
The Song of the Redeemed
And they sung a new song, saying, Thou ... hast redeemed us to God by Thy blood, out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation ... T he extent, variety, and order of the creation, proclaim the glory of God. He is likewise, ^* Maximus in Minimis . The smallest of the works, that we are capable of examining, such for instance as the eye or the wing of a little insect, the creature of a day, are stamped with an inimitable impression of His wisdom and power. Thus in His written Word, there
John Newton—Messiah Vol. 2

Departed Saints Fellow Servants with those yet on Earth.
"I am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren the prophets." That the saints do not remain insensible, while their bodies are in the dull, but become angels, * see and serve God and bear his messages, and minister to the heirs of salvation, hath been argued from several considerations, in the preceding discourse; but we chiefly depend on revelation. The text and several other scriptures, we conceive to be our purpose, and sufficient to establish our theory, and that the same is illustrated and confirmed
Andrew Lee et al—Sermons on Various Important Subjects

Of Self-Annihilation
Of Self-Annihilation Supplication and sacrifice are comprehended in prayer, which, according to S. John, is "an incense, the smoke whereof ascendeth unto God;" therefore it is said in the Apocalypse that "unto the Angel was given much incense, that he should offer it with the prayers of all Saints'' (Chap. viii. 3). Prayer is the effusion of the heart in the Presence of God: "I have poured out my soul before God" saith the mother of Samuel. (1 Sam. i. 15) The prayer of the wise men at the feet of
Madame Guyon—A Short and Easy Method of Prayer

The Glory of Jesus and Mary.
Before entering upon the contemplation of the excellent glory which surrounds the blessed in heaven, we must endeavor to form a correct idea of God's grace, which enabled them to perform the great and noble actions we are now to consider. They were all, except Jesus and Mary, conceived in sin, and, therefore, subject to the same temptations that daily assail us. They never could have triumphed and reached the supernatural glory which now surrounds them, had they been left to their own natural strength,
F. J. Boudreaux—The Happiness of Heaven

Cross References
Philippians 2:10
so that at the name of Jesus EVERY KNEE WILL BOW, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth,

Revelation 5:4
Then I began to weep greatly because no one was found worthy to open the book or to look into it;

Revelation 5:13
And every created thing which is in heaven and on the earth and under the earth and on the sea, and all things in them, I heard saying, "To Him who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb, be blessing and honor and glory and dominion forever and ever."

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