Victorinus: In Apocalypsin (21.1-6)

[21.1] Therefore in the kingdom and in the first resurrection appears the holy city, of which he speaks, descending from heaven, foursquare, walled around with stones of different and precious and coloured and various kinds, like fine gold, that is, bright. In crystal, he says, is its street paved; the river of life flowing through the middle, and springs of waters of life; the tree of life around it, making different fruits for every month; no light of the sun is there, because of a greater glory. The Lamb, he says, is its light.

[21.2] Its gates, truly, are each a single pearl, three from each part, not closed, but to be open. Scripture shows many reasons for the gifts of the kings of regions and nations, (kings) who will be servants, being brought there: he speaks of the subjection of the last ones, which we have treated. But the city is not thus understood, as one (?) we have known; for we are not able to testify any further, without a guide, to that which we have heard and seen. Otherwise, the city is spoken of as all those provinces of the Eastern region promissed to the Patriarch Abraham. Look, he says, to the heavens, from the place in which you are now standing, that is, from the great river Euphrates to the river of Egypt; all the land which you see, I will give it to you and to your seed. Finally, the Holy Spirit says: It will be ruled from sea to sea, that is, from the Red Sea, which is in Arabia, to the North Sea, which is the Sea of Phoenicia, and to the ends of the earth: which are the major parts of Syria. Therefore, all these provinces are to be levelled and cleansed at the coming of the Lord and (His) brightness descending from heaven like a cloud, outshining the brightness of the sun, and are shown contained in the circuit (of its walls).

[12.3] For as the Holy Spirit has also testified through Isaiah: Like a smoke of light burning with fire; with all the glory it will be covered; and in another place he says, Shine, Jerusalem! For your light has come, and the glory of the Lord is risen for you. For the sun will not illuminate for you by day, nor the moon for you by night; the Lord your God will be for you an eternal light. And David says: And there will be on the earth a firmament above the peaks of the mountains, and his fruit will be exalted over that of Lebanon, and they of the city will flourish like the grass of the earth. And Daniel spoke of the stone cut out without hands to strike the statue having four in it, that is, gold and silver, bronze and iron, and clay in the last; and this stone, after it will have reduced the statue to dust, will become a great mountain, filling the whole earth. And he interpreted the dream for the king, and says: You are, he says, the gold head, and your nation. Another kingdom, he says, will rise, lesser than you, and there will be a third kingdom which will rule the whole earth. And the fourth kingdom: very hard and very strong, like iron which subdues everything and cuts down every tree. And in the end time, he says, liked clay mixed with iron will men be mixed, and there will not be treaties nor agreement. And in those times the Lord God will raise up another kingdom, which kingdom, he says, the saints of the Most High God will take up. And this kingdom will not be captured by another nation; for God will strike and capture all the kingdoms of the earth, and His will remain forever.

[21.4] Paul also, speaking to the Corinthians, recalled mention of His kingdom: He must reign until He puts His enemies under His feet. The saints are spoken of in this kingdom: I have rejoiced just as we have have heard. In the same kingdom he will find those serving a perfect faith, of whom he says: they stood upon the sea of glass, having kitharas and bowls, that is, firmly established upon their baptism, and having their confession in their mouth, they are rejoicing there.

[21.5] In this kingdom, He has promised to His servants, saying: Whoever will leave father or mother or brother or sister for the sake of My name will receive the reward of one hundred parts multiplied, both now, and also will in the future possess eternal life. In this kingdom, those who have been defrauded of their goods because of the name of the Lord, and those many killed for all crimes and in prisons—and indeed before the coming of the Lord the Holy Prophets were stoned, killed, sawn—they will receive their consolation, that is, heavenly crowns and riches. In this kingdom the Lord Himself has promised He will restore for the years in which the locust and the wingless locust and the corruption ate. In this, all of creation will be saved and, by the command of God, will give forth the good things hidden in it. Then the saints will receive for bronze, gold, and for iron, silver and precious stones. In this place, He will send to them the riches of the sea and the excellent things of the nations. In this kingdom, the priests of the Lord will be called the servants of God, just as they have been called sacrilegious. In this kingdom, they will drink wine and be anointed with ointments and they will be given to rejoicing.

[21.6] Of this kingdom, the Lord reminded the Apostles before He suffered, saying: I will not drink of this fruit of the vine any more, until when I will drink with you again in the coming kingdom, which is the hundred parts multiplied, ten times, a thousand times, to greater things and better things.

And what he says of the different stones, that they will be shown by kind and by color, this speaks of men; as also it signifies the most precious variety of the faith of each man. For the gates of pearls he shows to be the Apostles. They will not be closed, he says: grace is given through them, and the same is never closed. In this place they will see face to face, and one will not request of another. And the names of the Fathers and the Apostles are to be both on the foundations and over the gates: we have already treated of the 24 elders, and of those who are to rule in this kingdom, they will judge the world.

[Victorinus does not cover chapter 22. This is the end of the original work.]

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