Revelation 6:1-7 1 And I saw when the Lamb opened one of the seals, and I heard one of the four living creatures saying, like a sound of thunder, “Come (and see).” 2 And I looked and saw a white horse , and he who sat on it holding a bow. And a crown was given to him, and he went out overcoming and to overcome. 3 And when He opened the second seal, I heard the second living creature saying, “Come (and see).” 4 And another horse, fiery red, went out. And it was given to the one who sat on it to take peace from the earth, and that they should slay one another. And a great sword was given to him. 5 And when He opened the third seal, I heard the third living creature say, “Come (and see).” And I looked and saw a black horse, and he who sat on it holding a pair of scales in his hand. 6 And I heard a voice in the midst of the four living creatures saying, “A quart of wheat for a day’s wage, and three quarts of barley for a day’s wage. And do not harm the oil and the wine.” 7 And when He opened the fourth seal, I heard the voice of the fourth living creature saying, “Come (and see).”
In all the best Greek manuscripts “Come and see” is simply <Come>.
The words “and see” are not there.
This is not an invitation for John to come and see; it is a summons to the four horses and their riders one by one to come forward on the stage of history. The four living creatures, who are the cherubim who surround the throne, have the task of summoning the actors in the final act of the divine and cosmic drama to come forward on to the stage.
William Barkley D.D.
Lecturer in New Testament Language and Literature and in Hellenistic Greek in the University of Glasgow
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