Revelation 11:18 English Standard Version

The nations raged, but your wrath came, and the time for the dead to be judged, and for rewarding your servants, the prophets and saints, and those who fear your name, both small and great, and for destroying the destroyers of the earth.”

Are there people who fear God's name who are not prophets and saints?

1 Answer 1


To "fear God" or "fear God's Name" is a technical term used throughout Scripture for those who faithfully serve God from respect and give Him due honor. Here is a sample:

  • Eccl 12:13 - When all has been heard, the conclusion of the matter is this: Fear God and keep His commandments, because this is the whole duty of man.
  • 1 Peter 2:17 - Treat everyone with high regard: Love the brotherhood of believers, fear God, honor the king.
  • Rev 14:7 - And he said in a loud voice, “Fear God and give Him glory, because the hour of His judgment has come. Worship the One who made the heavens and the earth and the sea and the springs of waters.”
  • Job 1:9 - Satan answered the LORD, “Does Job fear God for nothing?
  • Gen 42:18 - and on the third day he [Joseph] said to them, “I fear God. So do this and you will live:
  • Ps 66:16 - Come and listen, all you who fear God, and I will declare what He has done for me.
  • Ex 18:21 - Moreover, look for able men from all the people, men who fear God, who are trustworthy and hate a bribe, and place such men over the people as chiefs of thousands, of hundreds, of fifties, and of tens.

... and so forth. For reference to fearing God's name see Ps 61:5, 86:11, , Micah 6:9, Neh 1;11, etc. In Rev 11:18 we have a simple statement about God's intended judgement of ALL people, both righteous and wicked whom He intends to judge:

Rev 11:18 - The nations were enraged, and Your wrath has come. The time has come to judge the dead, and to reward Your servants, the prophets and saints, and those who fear Your name, both small and great, and to destroy those who destroy the earth.”

Thus, according to this brief synoptic list of the dead, we have the following groups of people whom God will judge, some righteous and other wicked:

  • Your [God's] servants (righteous)
  • The prophets and saints (righteous)
  • Those who fear Your name (righteous)
  • Both small and great (both righteous and wicked)
  • Those who destroy the earth (wicked)

Thus, God's judgement will include all people, and according to John 5:28, 29 -

Do not be amazed at this, for the hour is coming when all who are in their graves will hear His voice and come out—those who have done good to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil to the resurrection of judgment.

Later in the same book of Revelation these two groups of people are represented by two harvests: the harvest of the righteous wheat (Rev 14:14-16) and the harvest of the wicked grapes (Rev 14:17-20).

Barnes reaches an almost identical conclusion:

The prophets - All who, in every age, have faithfully proclaimed the truth. On the meaning of the word, see the notes on Revelation 10:11.

And to the saints - To all who are holy - under whatever dispensation, and in whatever land, and at whatever time, they may have lived. Then will be the time when, in a public manner, they will be recognized as belonging to the kingdom of God, and as being his true friends.

And them that fear thy name - Another way of designating his people, since religion consists in a profound veneration for God, Malachi 3:16; Job 1:1; Psalm 15:4; Psalm 22:23; Psalm 115:11; Proverbs 1:7; Proverbs 3:13; Proverbs 9:10; Isaiah 11:2; Acts 10:22, Acts 10:35.

Small and great - Young and old; low and high; poor and rich. The language is designed to comprehend all, of every class, who have a claim to be numbered among the friends of God, and it furnishes a plain intimation that people of all classes will be found at last among his true people. One of the glories of the true religion is, that, in bestowing its favors, it disregards all the artificial distinctions of society, and addresses man as man, welcoming all who are human beings to the blessings of life and salvation. This will be illustriously shown in the last period of the world's history, when the distinctions of wealth, and rank, and blood shall lose the importance which has been attributed to them, and when the honor of being a child of God shall have its true place. Compare Galatians 3:28.

And shouldest destroy them which destroy the earth - That is, all who have, in their conquests, spread desolation over the earth and who have persecuted the righteous, and all who have done injustice and wrong to any class of people. Compare the notes on Revelation 20:13-15.

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