Revelation 18:13

13 cargoes of cinnamon and spice, of incense, myrrh and frankincense, of wine and olive oil, of fine flour and wheat; cattle and sheep; horses and carriages; and human beings sold as slaves.

Read Revelation 18:13 Using Other Translations

And cinnamon, and odours, and ointments, and frankincense, and wine, and oil, and fine flour, and wheat, and beasts, and sheep, and horses, and chariots, and slaves, and souls of men.
cinnamon, spice, incense, myrrh, frankincense, wine, oil, fine flour, wheat, cattle and sheep, horses and chariots, and slaves, that is, human souls.
She also bought cinnamon, spice, incense, myrrh, frankincense, wine, olive oil, fine flour, wheat, cattle, sheep, horses, wagons, and bodies—that is, human slaves.

What does Revelation 18:13 mean?

John Gill's Exposition of the Bible
Revelation 18:13

And cinnamon, and odours, and ointments, and frankincense,
&c.] Things for delight and pleasure, for the gratifying of the senses; cinnamon, and odours were used for perfuming, ( Proverbs 7:17 ) anointing with oil was used at feasts, ( Psalms 23:5 ) and "frankincense", or censings, at banquets, and for the regaling of persons after food F11: these customs obtained among the eastern people. Tyre had its merchants for these things, ( Ezekiel 27:19 Ezekiel 27:22 ) and Mr. Brightman thinks Italy is Rome's merchant in these, which it fetches from Greece, Arabia, and Egypt; it may be these rather respect the ecclesiastical use of them; "cinnamon, odours", and "frankincense", may signify the perfumings and censings used in churches, or the burning incense in imitation of the sweet incense under the law; and "ointments" may denote their chrism, or anointing with oil at baptism, imagining that Christ was anointed with material oil at his baptism, whereas it was with the Holy Ghost: moreover, these things may be mystically understood, "cinnamon" being used by harlots in perfuming their bed, ( Proverbs 7:17 ) may intend the stews and brothel houses erected at Rome, and licensed by authority, each whore paying so much per week; the revenues of which would sometimes yearly amount to twenty thousand ducats: "ointments" may be understood of chrism in baptism, and extreme unction at death: "odours" and "frankincense" may mean their prayers and pater nosters, their prayers for the dead, which were never made without the pence; hence that proverbial expression, no pence, no pater noster.

And wine, and oil, and fine flour, and wheat, and beasts, and sheep:
things for civil use; these are things which belong to food, to eating and drinking, and are the most material and necessary things of life, ( Psalms 4:7 ) ( Jeremiah 31:12 ) ( Hosea 2:21 Hosea 2:22 ) ( Genesis 4:3 ) ( Isaiah 22:13 ) . Tyre had her merchants for these, ( Ezekiel 27:17 Ezekiel 27:18 Ezekiel 27:21 ) and Mr. Brightman will have Italy to be Rome's merchant for wine and oil; Sardinia and Sicily her merchants for fine flour and wheat; Germany for beasts, and England for sheep: and with respect to the ecclesiastical use of these things, wine is for the chalice, used in daily Masses, and drank only by the priests; "oil" for chrism at baptism, and for the extreme unction: "fine flour" for the Mass, or to make their breaden god of; and "wheat, beasts, and sheep" for tithes for the clergy:

and horses, and chariots, and slaves;
things for splendour, equipage, and attendance; horses and chariots for the popes, cardinals, archbishops, and bishops, to ride in state and grandeur, and slaves to wait upon them. Tyre had her merchants for these ( Ezekiel 27:14 Ezekiel 27:20 ) and Mr. Brightman's opinion is, that the French are Rome's merchants for horses and chariots, and the Swiss for slaves, or "bodies", as the word may be rendered, who live by exercising their bodies, and hiring them out in war; and who are many of them the guards of the person of the pope of Rome: and last of all it is added,

and souls of men;
still in allusion to the merchandise of Tyre, some of whose merchants are said to trade in the persons of men, ( Ezekiel 27:13 ) which the Targum and Septuagint render, in the souls of men; the popes have some of them sold their own souls to the devil, to get into the chair, and, when in, have been the means of destroying of thousands of others; they assume a power over the souls of men, of binding and loosing the consciences of men, imposing new laws upon them, and freeing them from obligation to the laws of God and men, to the ruin of their souls; and it has been said by their sycophants, that if the pope should send thousands of men to hell, no one should say to him, what dost thou? The Romish priests pretend to redeem souls out of purgatory for such a sum of money, and sell pardons and indulgences, say Mass, and promise heaven itself for money; and this they get at the expense of men's souls, by their false doctrine and superstitious worship, and so make merchandise of them, as is said of the false teachers, ( 2 Peter 2:3 ) moreover, as by "slaves", or bodies, in the preceding clause, are meant such who serve with their bodies, either by way of attendance, or in unnatural lust; so by "souls" of men may be meant men of soul, of great natural wit and understanding, of great parts, abilities, and learning, with which they serve the man of sin, and his interest, such as Bellarmine, and others.


F11 Misn. Beracot, c. 6. sect. 6.
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