Revelation 11:15-17

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Rev 11:15  And the seventh angel sounded; and there were great voices in heaven, saying, The kingdoms of this world are become [ the kingdoms] of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever.
Rev 11:16  And the four and twenty elders, which sat before God on their seats, fell upon their faces, and worshipped God,
Rev 11:17  Saying, We give thee thanks, O Lord God Almighty, which art, and wast, and art to come; because thou hast taken to thee thy great power, and hast reigned.
Rev 11:18  And the nations were angry, and thy wrath is come, and the time of the dead, that they should be judged, and that thou shouldest give reward unto thy servants the prophets, and to the saints, and them that fear thy name, small and great; and shouldest destroy them which destroy the earth.
Rev 11:19  And the temple of God was opened in heaven, and there was seen in his temple the ark of his testament: and there were lightnings, and voices, and thunderings, and an earthquake, and great hail.

Introduction

There is an emphasis on this seventh trumpet which we have not seen on any of the other seals or trumpets and which will not be seen in any of the coming seven plagues. Except for this seventh trumpet, all the seals, trumpets, and vials are all introduced and then immediately described. This is the only part of this revelation of Jesus Christ which is first alluded to with great anticipation in chapter ten, then it is introduced and announced here in chapter 11, but this introduction is separated from the complete revelation of the details of this seventh trumpet by chapters 12-15. We will not see what this seventh trumpet actually is until we get to chapter 16. So this grand introduction is separated from the chapter which describes its actual fulfillment by four whole chapters – chapters 12-15. Why is this seventh trumpet given such a magnificent and portentous introduction? It is because of what this trumpet portends. Look at what we are told happens at the sounding of this trumpet:

The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ;

Rev 11:15  And the seventh angel sounded; and there were great voices in heaven, saying, The kingdoms of this world are become [ the kingdoms] of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever.

As always, this is to be viewed primarily with spiritual “eyes within”. The primary meaning of this verse to those who would “read, hear and keep the things written in the words of this prophecy” has to do with the destruction of the kingdom of the beast and the kingdom of the “man of sin” who sits on the throne of God within the hearts and minds of God’s elect. While it may sound like this is an instantaneous event, the campaign of the land by Joshua and Israel, along with the fact that there are four whole chapters between “the days of the seventh angel, when he shall begin to sound” (Rev 10:7), demonstrates clearly that this trumpet and the things that it portends are a process of which this seventh trumpet is merely the beginning. It is the process of the decrease and daily death of our old “man of sin” and the increase and life of our “second man Adam… Christ within us, the hope of glory”.

2Th 2:3  Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;
2Th 2:4  Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God.

While the natural man sees the story of the fall of Jericho as a lesson in the history of Joshua’s and Israel’s conquest of the land, the mind of the spirit sees that story as the commencement of the campaign of entering into “the kingdom of God within you” through much tribulation, chastening and scourging, which will on a daily basis effectuate the destruction of our old man by decreasing the giants in the land, which ‘land’ is our hearts and minds which are within our earthly bodies.
The whole of Babylon recognizes that Israel’s journey out of Egypt is a type and a shadow of us coming out of this world of sin. They understand the crossing of the Red Sea and the Jordan River, as our baptism into the death of Christ and our own dying to sin. But that is as far as they can go. They have not been given to see that the giants in the land are a type of persistent sin in our lives, with which we were not prepared to do battle when we first came out of Egypt. This is to be a long and drawn out battle, to be fought in the land of promise.

Exo 23:30  By little and little I will drive them out from before thee, until thou be increased, and inherit the land.
Deu 7:22  And the LORD thy God will put out those nations before thee by little and little: thou mayest not consume them at once, lest the beasts of the field increase upon thee.

“Until you be increased” means “Christ in you…” Here is this same spiritual statement in the New Testament:

Joh 3:30  He must increase, but I must decrease.
1Co 15:31  I protest by your rejoicing which I have in Christ Jesus our Lord, I die daily.

So the sounding of these seven trumpets is our introduction to the beginning of the campaign of the land in which Christ must increase as the giants within us are decreased and destroyed “by little and little.” These trumpets are not at the end of this campaign, they are at the beginning, right after we have come out of the wilderness of Babylon and have begun to subdue the land of promise.

Jos 6:2  And the LORD said unto Joshua, See, I have given into thine hand Jericho, and the king thereof, and the mighty men of valour.
Jos 6:3  And ye shall compass the city, all ye men of war, and go round about the city once. Thus shalt thou do six days.
Jos 6:4  And seven priests shall bear before the ark seven trumpets of rams’ horns: and the seventh day ye shall compass the city seven times, and the priests shall blow with the trumpets.

Who do these “seven priests” symbolize? They symbolize the seven priests who are also called “seven angels” here in the book of the revelation of Jesus Christ. Where are these seven angels called priests? Here are the verses which make that clear:

Rev 17:1  And there came one of the seven angels which had the seven vials, and talked with me, saying unto me, Come hither; I will shew unto thee the judgment of the great whore that sitteth upon many waters:
Rev 19:10  And I fell at his feet to worship him [“One of the seven angels”]. And he said unto me, See thou do it not: I am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren that have the testimony of Jesus: worship God: for the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.
Rev 22:8  And I John saw these things, and heard them. And when I had heard and seen, I fell down to worship before the feet of the angel which shewed me these things.
Rev 22:9  Then saith he unto me, See thou do it not: for I am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren the prophets, and of them which keep the sayings of this book: worship God.

Where are these seven angels called priests? These seven angels are our fellowservants, they are of our brothers and of them which keep the sayings of this book, but where are they called priests? Here is where they are called priests. Here is who the seven priests with seven trumpets in Jos 6 foreshadow and symbolize.

Rev 1:6  And hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.
Rev 5:10  And hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth.

Only those who are given “a new name” are aware of that name, and only those who are these seven angels are aware that they are God’s seven priests with seven trumpets. It is we who are fellowservants who are keeping the things written in the book of this prophecy:

Rev 2:17  He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the hidden manna, and will give him a white stone, and in the stone a new name written, which no man knoweth saving he that receiveth it.
Rev 3:12  Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name.

The word ‘kingdoms’ in verse 15 is the Greek word ‘basileia’. It is Strong’s number G932, and we are told in Strong’s that it comes from G935. It appears in the New Testament 164 times, and the King James Concordance has it translated in the singular 158 of those 164. I have 28 English translations on my e- sword, and of those 28 only five use the plural here in this verse. All the other 23 have this in the singular.
In Rev 18 we have both G932 and G935 in the same verse, so we will look at that verse to get a sense of how this word ‘basileia’ is to be understood.

Rev 17:18  And the woman which thou sawest is that great city, which reigneth [932] over the kings [935] of the earth.

Here G 932 is translated ‘reigns.’ So it appears that the thought of this verse in Rev 11:15 is that the reigning or rulership this world has become the reigning and rulership of our Lord and His Christ. Adhering to Rev 1:3 telling us to “keep the things written therein”, this verse is nothing less than another way of saying what these verses tell us:

2Co 4:7  But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us.
Col 1:26  [ Even] the mystery which hath been hid from ages and from generations, but now is made manifest to his saints:
Col 1:27  To whom God would make known what [ is] the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory:

Our Lord and His Christ

“Our Lord and His Christ” are right now sitting together on the throne of God because Christ has taken His proper position on His throne in the heavens in our hearts and minds. Of course it is all the work of God, but it is He who has declared that we are seated with Him on His throne, ruling the kingdoms of this world.

Eph 2:6  And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly [ places] in Christ Jesus:

Here is Eph 2:6 in the International Standard Version:

(ISV)  … raised us up with him, and seated us with him in the heavenly realm in Christ Jesus,

Where is Christ seated?

Rev 3:21  To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne.

What a great and precious promise we are now granted, in Christ. We are, even now, overcomers in Christ who can sit with Christ on His Father’s throne in the heavenly realm, and “the kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord and His Christ”, because He is now living His life within us, “His Christ”, and He has subdued, and is now reigning over, the kingdom of this world within us.
This phrase “His Christ” refers to those who Christ has anointed and sent forth just as His Father anointed and sent Him forth. Christ’s Father sent Him to be the savior of this world, and Christ has sent us forth to do the same job.

Joh 3:17  For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.

Here are Christ’s own words concerning our calling.

Joh 20:21  Then said Jesus to them again, Peace be unto you: as my Father hath sent me, even so send I you.

Christ was with His Father even while He was on this earth, just as we are seated with Him in His Father’s throne while we are on this earth.

Joh 3:12  If I have told you earthly things, and ye believe not, how shall ye believe, if I tell you of heavenly things?
Joh 3:13  And no man hath ascended up to heaven, but he that came down from heaven, even the Son of man which is in heaven.

It is while we are in these clay vessels that we possess this treasure. It is while we are in these vessels of clay that we are seated with Christ in His Father’s throne, and it is in these earthen vessels that we are given to rule this kingdom… “that the power may be of God, and not of us.”

Luk 22:29 And I appoint unto you a kingdom, as my Father hath appointed unto me;
2Co 4:7 But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us.

This is all accomplished through Christ being in us and living His life of being rejected and persecuted within our flesh. This is the secret which has been, and is still, hidden from all the generations of mankind, except for those “His saints” in whom Christ dwells.

Col 1:26  Even the mystery which hath been hid from ages and from generations, but now is made manifest to his saints:
Col 1:27  To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory:

What does “Christ in you” mean? This is what that means. It is two verses earlier.

Col 1:24  Who now rejoice in my sufferings for you, and fill up that which is behind of the afflictions of Christ in my flesh for his body’s sake, which is the church:

Like our own Savior, we too, are called to “fall into the ground and die, to die daily, to be buried with Him in baptism, and to be raised up together with Him to be sent forth as His Father has sent Him to becomes “saviors upon Mount Zion…”

Oba 1:21  And saviours shall come up on mount Zion to judge the mount of Esau; and the kingdom shall be the LORD’S.

“The kingdom shall be the Lord’s”, but Christ is now “Lord and Christ”.

Act 2:36  Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made that same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ.

That is a very important verse of scripture, because Christ is now “both Lord and Christ”, and it is through Christ that we too, are ‘Christed’ and are anointed. The Lord has told us that He has sent us just as His Father sent Him. Since His Father gave Him a kingdom and since His Father sent Christ to be the Savior of this world, Christ in turn has given us a kingdom and has sent us to be “Saviors upon Mount Zion. That is why we read that “the kingdom of this world is become the kingdom of our Lord and His Christ”, and that is why we see the phrase “His Christ” three times in the New Testament.

Act 4:26  The kings of the earth stood up, and the rulers were gathered together against the Lord, and against his Christ.

Rev 11:15  And the seventh angel sounded; and there were great voices in heaven, saying, The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever.
Rev 12:10  And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night.

The point that is being made is the imminence of all of this. “NOW is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God and the power of His Christ”. This inheritance is all ours even now in down payment form.

Eph 1:11  In whom also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will:
Eph 1:12  That we should be to the praise of his glory, who first trusted in Christ.
Eph 1:13  In whom ye also [ trusted], after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise,
Eph 1:14  Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory.
Mat 24:32  Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When his branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is nigh:
Mat 24:33  So likewise ye, when ye shall see all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors.
Mat 24:34  Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled.
Rev 1:3  Blessed is he that readeth, and they that hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written therein: for the time is at hand.

For all who are “found worthy” to be in that blessed and holy first resurrection, this kingdom and this reign is now. “ Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night.”

Where are the four beasts?

Rev 11:16  And the four and twenty elders, which sat before God on their seats, fell upon their faces, and worshipped God,

When we know what the four beasts and the four and twenty elders symbolize, we need not to even ask that question, because the four beasts and the four and twenty elders symbolize one and the same thing. Asking where are the four beasts is like asking what happened to the seven cows of Pharaoh’s dream, while discussing the the seven ears of corn. The cows and the corn are both symbols of the one point that is being made. There will be seven years of plenty, to be followed by seven years of famine.

Gen 41:25  And Joseph said unto Pharaoh, The dream of Pharaoh is one: God hath shewed Pharaoh what he is about to do.

So too, the beasts and the elders are one. The seven angels and the seven priests are one, and in this entire prophecy God is showing us what He is about to do.

Rev 5:8  And when he had taken the book, the four beasts and four and twenty elders fell down before the Lamb, having every one of them harps, and golden vials full of odours, which are the prayers of saints.
Rev 5:9  And they sung a new song, saying, Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation;

And what is God about to do? It is the very next verse, and it is to be “read… heard… and kept, for the time is at hand”.

Rev 5:10  And hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth.

Christ, has “given us a kingdom” just as His Father has given Him a kingdom, and like Him we are to “reign on the earth… for the time is at hand.” “Every creature in heaven and on earth” will worship God, the four beasts are do so continually.

Rev 4:8  And the four beasts had each of them six wings about him; and they were full of eyes within: and they rest not day and night, saying, Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty, which was, and is, and is to come.

Those who have been given “eyes within” know that the four beasts are always worshiping God

Rev 19:4  And the four and twenty elders and the four beasts fell down and worshipped God that sat on the throne, saying, Amen; Alleluia.

But when is this worship emphasized and made especially evident? It is especially evident at the sounding of the seventh trumpet, when the kingdom of this world “within” is seen by those who are “full of eyes within” to fall and “become the kingdom of our Lord and His Christ”. What a wonderful day that is when the conquering king takes control of His own rightful kingdom which has been in the hands of wicked husbandmen for so long. Everyone will, in their own time, bow their knee and confess that our Lord is Lord over the man of sin “to the glory of God.”

Rom 14:11  For it is written, As I live, saith the Lord, every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall confess to God.
Php 2:10  That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth;

Every part of our being rejoices at the time of this great event.

Rev 5:13  And every creature which is in heaven, and on the earth, and under the earth, and such as are in the sea, and all that are in them, heard I saying, Blessing, and honour, and glory, and power, be unto him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb for ever and ever.

God’s wrath is, was, and will come before the dead are judged

Rev 11:17  Saying, We give thee thanks, O Lord God Almighty, which art, and wast, and art to come; because thou hast taken to thee thy great power, and hast reigned.
Rev 11:18  And the nations were angry, and thy wrath is come, and the time of the dead, that they should be judged, and that thou shouldest give reward unto thy servants the prophets, and to the saints, and them that fear thy name, small and great; and shouldest destroy them which destroy the earth.

How few it is that realize that they are born and live their lives under the wrath of God until the day they believe on Christ. If “the time of the dead that they should be judged” means the resurrection that immediately precedes the millennium, and you do not experience the death and resurrection which is the revelation of Jesus Christ here and now, then you will not be in that resurrection that immediately precedes the millennium, and you will not be one of the priests and kings who will rule with Christ over the kingdoms of this world.

Joh 3:36  He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.

This truth is demonstrated with two verses of scripture. It is a rare person who even sees the apparent contradiction between these two verses of God’s Word.

1Pe 4:17  For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God?

It is “in judgment” that God pours out His wrath upon all of our ungodliness and unrighteousness. Let’s read it again: “keep the things that are written therein, for the time is at hand… and thy wrath is come, and the time of the dead, that they should be judged…” (Rev 11:18).

Heb 9:27  And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment:

Death must precede judgment. Only those who are “full of eyes within” can even begin to see that those who “are appointed once to die and then be judged” are us. It is we who must “die daily” (1Co 15:31). It is we who we are “crucified with Christ” (Gal 2:20), and it is we who are “buried with Him in baptism” (Rom 6:3-4), even as we live and are being judged in these dying “earthen vessels”.
The ‘world’ that is within us and the ‘world’ that is without us are both bent on the destruction of “the seed of the woman”,  (Rev 12:5). There are many other titles given to the “seed of the woman” who is also called “a manchild who is to rule the world with a rod of iron”, but they are all titles of “the very elect” of God.

Rev 12:4  And his tail drew the third part of the stars of heaven, and did cast them to the earth: and the dragon stood before the woman which was ready to be delivered, for to devour her child as soon as it was born.
Rev 12:5  And she brought forth a man child, who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron: and her child was caught up unto God, and to his throne.

While God is in the process of destroying our old Adam by replacing him with a New Adam who is called “the last Adam, it is not our prerogative to “destroy the earth”. That is a task that has been delegated to those who are called ‘the seed of the serpent’ and are said by our Lord to be “of their Father the devil”.

Gen 3:14  And the LORD God said unto the serpent, Because thou hast done this, thou art cursed above all cattle, and above every beast of the field; upon thy belly shalt thou go, and dust shalt thou eat all the days of thy life:
Gen 3:15  And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel.

Who is it that our Lord says will bruise His heel? Who is it that seeks to destroy the manchild as soon as he is born? It is each of us when we are “those Jews which believe on Christ, but are still “of our Father the devil”.

Joh 8:30  As he spake these words, many believed on him.
Joh 8:31  Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on him, If ye continue in my word, [ then] are ye my disciples indeed;
Joh 8:32  And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.
Joh 8:33  They answered him, We be Abraham’s seed, and were never in bondage to any man: how sayest thou, Ye shall be made free?
Joh 8:34  Jesus answered them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Whosoever committeth sin is the servant of sin.
Joh 8:40  But now ye seek to kill me, a man that hath told you the truth, which I have heard of God: this did not Abraham.
Joh 8:44  Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.

This is us when we were “of our father the devil”, even as we thought we “believed on Christ”. This is us when our “man of sin” is standing in the temple of God proclaiming himself to be God. This is us as the wrath of God is being poured out upon our ungodliness and unrighteousness and we are made to admit that “I am the man” (2Sa 12:7). This is us when we come to see that “Them that destroy the earth” are those who are seeking the life of our Lord Himself.

Rev 11:18  And the nations were angry, and thy wrath is come, and the time of the dead, that they should be judged, and that thou shouldest give reward unto thy servants the prophets, and to the saints, and them that fear thy name, small and great; and shouldest destroy them which destroy the earth.
Mat 25:40  And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.

What is found within the ark of His covenant?

Rev 11:19  And the temple of God was opened in heaven, and there was seen in his temple the ark of his testament: and there were lightnings, and voices, and thunderings, and an earthquake, and great hail.

These are the closing words of the introduction of the seventh trumpet. “The temple of God was opened in heaven and there was seen in his temple the ark of His testament.”
What was in the ark in the temple of God? Here is the first and the last account of the contents of what “was seen in His temple [ in] the ark of His testament”.

Deu 10:5  And I turned myself and came down from the mount, and put the tables in the ark which I had made; and there they be, as the LORD commanded me.
1Ki 8:9  There was nothing in the ark save the two tables of stone, which Moses put there at Horeb, when the LORD made a covenant with the children of Israel, when they came out of the land of Egypt.

Within the ark of the covenant was the law of God. That was the basis upon which the covenant was contracted. Israel contracted with God to keep His laws, and our Lord agreed to be their God. That is the same way we are married to our Lord today. That is how we become His bride. We agree to “do the things He says… and fulfill the law of Christ”. If we don’t do the things He says, then we are not His wife, and He is not our Lord.

Luk 6:46  And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say?
Mat 7:21  Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.

That is what is meant by “there was seen in his temple the ark of his testament”. If we have our Lord living within us, then we will be doing the things He says and we will be doing the will of our Father which is in heaven”. It is “the things which He says” which are the “lightnings, and voices, and thunderings, and an earthquake”. It is “the things which He says which are the “great hail” which will “sweep away the refuge of lies”.

Isa 28:17  Judgment also will I lay to the line, and righteousness to the plummet: and the hail shall sweep away the refuge of lies, and the waters shall overflow the hiding place.

Summary

We have seen that “The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ;” is primarily to be understood as first happening within, as the image we are is destroyed by Christ as he increases within us and we decrease within Him.
We have seen that “our Lord and His Christ” is speaking of us as those who are anointed of and are sent out by Christ, just as He was anointed of and sent out by His Father to save this world.
We have demonstrated that the four beasts and the four and twenty elders are one and the same symbol of God’s elect, just as the cows and corn both meant the same thing in Pharaoh’s dreams. Thus, when we are told that the four and twenty elders fall down and worship God when the seventh angel sounds his trumpet, we are being told that the four beasts also fall down and worship our Lord and our God.
We have seen that it is God’s Word which is the fire of His wrath which is, was and will be poured out upon all of our ungodliness and unrighteousness, and we saw that this is all being announced and being done even as we are beginning to take the land away from the giants who have for so long dominated our land. This is the significance of this seventh trumpet, which begins to take the kingdom of this world and “by little and little” transform it into the kingdom of our Lord and His Christ.
Finally, we saw that this is all accomplished by the Words of our Lord being within us and destroying by its great heat all that can be burned out of us, as we learn to “do the things that our Lord says”.
Next week, Lord willing, we will begin to see what we are given to understand in the first of the four chapters which separate this introduction of this seventh trumpet from the chapter which reveals to us the exact nature of this seventh trumpet. It will be the beginning of chapter twelve, concerning the woman, the manchild she is prophesied to bring forth and the dragon who is right there seeking to destroy that manchild.

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