And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him
The inhabitants of the Roman empire, the idolatrous part of it, the men of the world, earthly minded men; who are as they came into the world, and are of the earth, earthly, and seek only after earthly honours, pleasures, and profits; these are the admirers and adorers of the beast:
whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain
from the foundation of the world;
by which book is meant God's predestination of men to eternal life, or his decree of election; why this is called the "book of life", (See Gill on Revelation 3:5); and their "names [being] written [therein] from the foundation of the world", ( Revelation 17:8 ) , for such a construction the words will bear, denotes that election is eternal, and is not an act of time, nor dependent upon anything done in time; and that it is of particular persons, and not of bodies of men, of nations and churches, and still less of propositions, or of persons so and so qualified, or under such conditions and circumstances; and that it is perfectly well known to God, and is sure and certain in its effects, and is unchangeable and irrevocable; for what is written in it, is written, and will always stand, not upon the foot of works, but of the sovereign grace of God; and this is called the Lamb's book; that is, Christ, who is compared to a Lamb for its harmlessness, meekness, and patience, and was typified by the lambs in the legal sacrifices; and this book is called his, because he was present at the making of it, and was concerned in putting down the names in it, ( John 13:18 ) , and he himself stands first in it as the elect of God, and the head of all the elect, who, as members, were chosen in him: the act of election was made in him, and stands sure in him; and he is the author and giver of that life, which men are chosen unto both here and hereafter: and he may be said to be "slain from the foundation of the world"; in the decree and purpose of God, by which he was set forth, or foreappointed to be the propitiation for sin, and was foreordained, before the foundation of the world, to redeem his people by his blood, and in the promise of God immediately after the fall of man, that the seed of the woman should have his heel bruised, and he himself should bruise the serpent's head, which made it as sure as if it was then done; and in the sacrifices, which were immediately upon this offered up, and were types of the death and sacrifice of Christ; and in the faith of the saints, which brings distant things near, and considers them as if present; and also in his members, in Abel, and others, in whom he suffered, as he still does in his people; to which may be added, that such is the efficacy of the bloodshed and death of Christ, that it reached to all the saints from the beginning of the world, for the justification of their persons, the atonement of their sins, and cleansing from them; for the remission of sins, that are past, and for the redemption of transgressions under the first testament; for Old Testament saints from the beginning are saved by the grace of the Lord Jesus, as New Testament ones are. Something like this the Jews say F5 of the Messiah upon ( Genesis 49:11 ) ,
``he washed (amle yrbtad amwym) , "from the day that the world was created"; who is he? this is the King Messiah.--It is written ( Genesis 1:2 ) ; "and the Spirit of God" This is the Spirit of the King Messiah; and from the day that the world was created; he washed his garments in wine;''which the Jewish writers F6 understand of blood, which for its redness is like to wine; though they interpret it of the blood of the slain, with which the garments of the Messiah will be stained. Now such whose names are not written in this book of the Lamb, who have no interest in electing grace, nor in redemption by Christ, the slain Lamb of God, nor any right unto eternal life, who are reprobate persons, vessels of wrath fitted for destruction, who are foreordained to condemnation, and are given up to believe a lie, that they might be damned, these are the followers and worshippers of antichrist.
F5 Zohar in Gen. fol. 128. 2, 3.
F6 Targum Jon. & Jerus. & Aben Ezra in Gen. xlix. 11.