John is in heaven standing in the throne room and he sees Christ sitting on the throne with a book is his hand that has seven seals. A really strong angels says who is worthy to open the book and to break the seals? John states that he cried because no man was found worthy to open the book let alone look at it. This is mentioned in Revelation 5:1-4 and it states: 1 And I saw in the right hand of him that sat on the throne a book written within and on the backside, sealed with seven seals. 2 And I saw a strong angel proclaiming with a loud voice, Who is worthy to open the book, and to loose the seals thereof? 3 And no man in heaven, nor in earth, neither under the earth, was able to open the book, neither to look thereon. 4 And I wept much, because no man was found worthy to open and to read the book, neither to look thereon. But on e of the elders tells John, don’t cry and look the Lion of the tribe of Judah (Jesus) the Root of David has prevailed and opened the book and the seals. This is mentioned in Revelation 5:5 which states: And one of the elders saith unto me, Weep not: behold, the Lion of the tribe of Juda, the Root of David, hath prevailed to open the book, and to loose the seven seals thereof. We know that it is Christ who opened the book and the seals because of the very next verse Revelation 5:6 which states: And I beheld, and, lo, in the midst of the throne and of the four beasts, and in the midst of the elders, stood a Lamb as it had been slain, having seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven Spirits of God sent forth into all the earth. The slain lamb of course was Jesus Christ because he paid for our transgressions with His blood. Keeping mind that this is a vision that John the Revelator is seeing. The rest of this chapter is giving praise to Jesus Christ and John is letting us know that Jesus Christ is the one that loosed the seals and He is the One true God as He is the one the sits on the throne, and it was Him who gave His life so that we all may live. I will writing about Revelation Chapter 6 which is one of the most exciting chapters in Revelation. I hope you stay tuned for that, and as always you can follow me on twitter:
Today, I will discuss church number five which is the church of Sardis. As, I have been doing, I will start with what Jesus liked about the church of Sardis and what Jesus Christ did not like about the church of Sardis.
- Sardis – Things Jesus liked – Rev. 3:4 – Thou hast a few names even in Sardis which have not defiled their garments; and they shall walk with me in white: for they are worthy. Things Jesus did not like – Rev. 3:1-2 – 1 And unto the angel of the church in Sardis write; These things saith he that hath the seven Spirits of God, and the seven stars; I know thy works, that thou hast a name that thou livest, and art dead. 2 Be watchful, and strengthen the things which remain, that are ready to die: for I have not found thy works perfect before God. Jesus Christ also gave a warning to the church of Sardis, and the warning is contained in Revelation 3:3 which states: Remember therefore how thou hast received and heard, and hold fast, and repent. If therefore thou shalt not watch, I will come on thee as a thief, and thou shalt not know what hour I will come upon thee.
Jesus Christ liked that there were still a few people from the church of Sardis that were found worthy and had not defiled their garments. There are things that Jesus did not like, one being that the church of Sardis had a reputation that it is an “alive” church. Meaning that this church was alive in Jesus Christ, but in reality this church was dead. Meaning that the church of Sardis was without Christ. There were a few people who were alive in Christ and it seems there were more people who were dead – living without Christ in the church of Sardis. Jesus tells these people that they have to be very careful, and strengthen the things that they have, because they are almost about to lose those beliefs. According to Jesus He did not find their works perfect before God. Jesus also issued a warning to the people who have defiled their garments. And, He said, remember what you have learned, and hold on to your belief. Don’t let your unbelief guide you. Jesus advised these people in the church of Sardis to repent and return to Him. The actual warning that Jesus issued was that if they don’t watch for His return, than Jesus would come to them as a thief, and they won’t know what hour He will come.
In the warning Jesus made it seem like if the church of Sardis watch for Christ’s return they will know approximately when He will come back for His bride. In 1 Thessalonians 5:1-10 it is written: 1 But of the times and the seasons, brethren, ye have no need that I write unto you. 2 For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night. 3 For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape. 4 But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that, that day should overtake you as a thief. 5 Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day: we are not of the night, nor of darkness. 6 Therefore let us not sleep, as do others; but let us watch and be sober. 7 For they that sleep, sleep in the night; and they that be drunken are drunken in the night. 8 But let us, who are of the day, be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love; and for an helmet, the hope of salvation. 9 For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ, 10 Who died for us, that, whether we wake or sleep, we should live together with him.
Let’s start with the key verse and that verse is 1 Thessalonians 5:4 which states: But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that, that day should overtake you as a thief. So, that day will not overtake the people who belong to the church of Sardis as long as they are the children of light, but if they are the children of darkness than that day will overtake them. Then it is clear with these verses that if the church of Sardis watch for Christ’s return and stay the children of light then they will be fine. In the next post I will be discussing church number 6 which is the Church of Philadelphia and the post will be titled Revelation Chapter 3 Part (B) . Stay tuned, and as always you can follow me on twitter:
- Thyatira – Things Jesus liked Rev. 2:19 – I know thy works, and charity, and service, and faith, and thy patience, and thy works; and the last to be more than the first. Things Jesus did not like Rev. 2:20 – Notwithstanding I have a few things against thee, because thou sufferest that woman Jezebel, which calleth herself a prophetess, to teach and to seduce my servants to commit fornication, and to eat things sacrificed unto idols. Jesus Christ also offered a warning to the church of Thyatira. The warning was issued in Revelation 2:21-25 – 21 And I gave her space to repent of her fornication; and she repented not. 22 Behold, I will cast her into a bed, and them that commit adultery with her into great tribulation, except they repent of their deeds. 23 And I will kill her children with death; and all the churches shall know that I am he which searcheth the reins and hearts: and I will give unto every one of you according to your works. 24 But unto you I say, and unto the rest in Thyatira, as many as have not this doctrine, and which have not known the depths of Satan, as they speak; I will put upon you none other burden. 25 But that which ye have already hold fast till I come.
Jesus said to the church of Thyatira, that he knows their works also. He knows of their charity, service, their faith, and their patience. They are last, but they will be more than the first. Think of it like this, there is a race and some of the church members of Thyatira are in last place, but because of what they do and what they believe, they will finish ahead of other church members who are in first place. To become more than the first. Even though the church of Thyatira had many great qualities, Jesus still found things that He did not like. Jesus said that His servants are adhering to the teachings of Jezebel. Jezebel was a Phoenician princess turned “prophetess” who married Ahab a prince of Israel and as time passed, Jezebel and Ahab ruled as king and queen. During the rule, Jezebel did not accept Yahweh as God, but continued her practice of nature worship and sorcery (Satan worship). The spirit of Jezebel was allowed to endure and to corrupt some of the church of Thyatira. Not only did the servants of Christ commit physical fornication, but, my belief starts here → they also committed spiritual fornication. Spiritual fornication is as discussed in the post titled Revelation Chapter 2 Part (B). Spiritual fornication is the mixing of paganism into Christianity ← my belief stops here. The servants of Christ also ate food that was sacrificed to idols. Jesus, also issued a warning to the church of Thyatira, and He said, I have given you time to repent of your fornication, but you did not repent. Now, I am going to allow people who commit adultery with her to suffer greatly, unless they repent of their deeds.
My belief starts here → Revelation 2:22 states, that people who commit adultery with her will suffer greatly. I believe this is speaking about both physical and spiritual adultery and fornication as mentioned in Revelation 2:21. The interesting thing is that, Jesus commented on both fornication and adultery. Fornication is sexual intercourse between people not married to each other, and adultery is voluntary sexual intercourse between a married person and a person who is not his or her spouse. We, as Christians are called the bride of Christ according to Revelation 19:7 which states: Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honour to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath made herself ready. Marriage spiritually means that we are in union with Christ Jesus, and not with another “spiritual” leader. All Christian people should believe that physical fornication and adultery are sins. Now, let’s focus on the spiritual fornication and spiritual adultery. Spiritual fornication is when a Christian (married to Christ) mingles his/her beliefs with pagan beliefs. The pagan who is (married to Christ or not married to Christ). As we well know, one can live a completely pagan lifestyle, and still call herself or himself Christian. Spiritual adultery is when a Christian (married to Christ) intentionally goes and mingles his or her beliefs, with pagan beliefs because the Christian wants to satisfy some urge that she or he knows is not allowed in the body of Christ. In both instances, fornication and adultery, the acts are intentional. The key difference being, that in spiritual fornication one is a nominal Christian; and does not really have a love for Jesus Christ. It’s just what she or he was raised to believe. In a sense if the nominal Christian finds another “partner” that appears more pleasing then he or she will not hesitate to pursue a relationship to see if there is something more there. In spiritual adultery, the Christian is married and loves Jesus Christ with all his heart. This Christian will not forsake the Lord Jesus Christ, but this Christian may sacrifice a belief because it does not agree with their morals. Also, in both instances of spiritual fornication and spiritual adultery it is mingling of the doctrine and testimony of Jesus Christ with pagan ideas and doctrines ← my belief stops here. The people committing this sin physically and spiritually will be punished, but they will be forgiven if they repent.
In Revelation 2:23 Jesus states, that He will kill her children with death, for He searches the reins and hearts. My belief starts here → When Jesus states that He will kill her children it does not actually mean children, what I believe it means is the followers of the teachings of Jezebel, and those who think it is okay to commit physical and spiritual adultery. The word children in this case would equal future followers of this “Christian” doctrine mingled with pagan beliefs, that have actually corrupted the teachings of Jesus Christ. In the same verse Jesus said that He searches reins and hearts, meaning that he knows what desires drive these individuals and He will give each according to his works. Revelation 2:24 is very important, as it states, that those who do not have this doctrine, and have not gone too deep into the so-called knowledge of Satan (Satan Worship) and still make their way to Christ and accept His sacrifice that He made for all. Jesus states, to these people I will put no other burden on you. Meaning that Christ is not going to expect these future followers to know everything there is to know about Christ or Christianity and how everything fits together like a jigsaw puzzle ← my belief stops here. Jesus said in Revelation 2:25, that you must hold onto what you have till I come. The next post I will discuss church number 5 which is the church of Sardis and the post will be titled Revelation Chapter 3 Part (A). Stay tuned, and as always you can follow me on twitter:
- Smyrna – Things Jesus liked – Rev. 2:9 – I know thy works, and tribulation, and poverty, (but thou art rich) and I know the blasphemy of them which say they are Jews, and are not, but are the synagogue of Satan. Interestingly enough Jesus never stated that He had anything against this church. However, Jesus Christ issued this warning in Revelation 2:10 which states: Fear none of those things which thou shalt suffer: behold, the devil shall cast some of you into prison, that ye may be tried; and ye shall have tribulation ten days: be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life.
To the church of Smyrna, Jesus said He knows their works and tribulation, and poverty. Jesus never stated that He did not like their works as He did for the church of Ephesus. Jesus said that He knows the blasphemy of them which claim they are Jews but are not, and that they are the synagogue of Satan. My belief starts here → If you look all over the world there are groups who claim that they are Jews, and they may very well be, but there is not 100% proof that they are. Only Jesus Christ knows if what they say is true in regards to their lineage. Here is one such group. Some of these people may actually have Jewish lineage, but I cannot with 100% certainty claim that this is fact. This is just one group, but there are others ← my belief stops here. Jesus did issue a warning to the church of Smyrna. Jesus said that the devil will cast some of you from the church of Smyrna into prison to be tried in the court of law. The people of the church of Smyrna will experience tribulation for a period of ten days. Jesus said, be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life. This would mean that the people who are thrown in prison are going to have two choices: a) deny the testimony of Christ and live but later die the second death or b) be faithful unto death. It seems from these prophetic words that some of the people of the church of Smyrna will be executed for their testimony of Jesus Christ. On to church number three which is the church of Pergamos.
- Pergamos – Things Jesus liked – Rev. 2:13 – I know thy works, and where thou dwellest, even where Satan’s seat is: and thou holdest fast my name, and hast not denied my faith, even in those days wherein Antipas was my faithful martyr, who was slain among you, where Satan dwelleth. Things Jesus did not like – Revelation 2:14-15 – 14 But I have a few things against thee, because thou hast there them that hold the doctrine of Balaam, who taught Balac to cast a stumblingblock before the children of Israel, to eat things sacrificed unto idols, and to commit fornication. 15 So hast thou also them that hold the doctrine of the Nicolaitans, which thing I hate.
To the church of Pergamos, Jesus said that I like the fact that you hold fast to my name even though you work out of a place where Satan’s seat is. Meaning a place where Satan’s power/influence is strongest. Jesus also liked the fact that the church of Pergamos kept their faith in Christ even amongst the persecution of Antipas. The people of the church of Pergamos did not abandon their faith in midst of the persecution of Christians. They held on to what they believe and they did not waver. They did not give in. There was a couple of things that Jesus did not like about the church of Pergamos. First, Jesus did not like the fact that some people of this church held to the doctrine of Balaam, who taught Balac to cast stumblingblock before the children of Israel. The stumblingblock was to curse what God said not to curse and to make people believe that what is wrong is right. When in actuality it is very wrong. The other issue was eating food that was sacrificed to idols. Such as eating halal food, where the animal is slaughtered while the slaughterer utters the word bismillah, which means in the name of Allah. Lastly some of the people in the church of Pergamos were committing fornication. We know, as Christians that fornication is a sin and Christ is against this. My belief starts here → I believe that Christ was speaking about both actual physical fornication and spiritual fornication. The spiritual fornication was the mixing of paganism into Christianity, meaning that this “union” should not have happened, it is wrong, and it is sin. This “union” was rotting the teachings and doctrine of Jesus Christ ← my belief stops here. Now, the story of Balaam and Balac or Balak is found in Numbers chapter 22 to chapter 25 if you would like to read it. Essentially Balaam was a false prophet and a magician. He knew how to please God with sacrifices, but his power was not from God but from the devil. Second, Jesus did not like that the church of Pergamos was holding on to the doctrine of the Nicolaitans. Again, the Nicolaitans went against the testimony/teachings of Jesus Christ. They brought their pagan traditions in and mixed it with Christ’s teachings to the point that the testimony/teachings of Jesus Christ became heretical because of the Nicolaitans. All is not lost Jesus states in Revelation 2:16 and it reads: Repent; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will fight against them with the sword of my mouth. Jesus simply says the church of Pergamos must repent and not do what they have been doing, and He will forgive them. I will discuss church number four which is Thyatira in my next post titled Revelation Chapter 2 Part (C). Stay tuned, and as always you can follow me on twitter:
- Ephesus – Rev. 2:7 – 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 tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God.
- Smyrna – Rev. 2:11 – He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; He that overcometh shall not be hurt of the second death.
- Pergamos – 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.
- Thyatira – Rev. 2:26 – And he that overcometh, and keepeth my works unto the end, to him will I give power over nations.
- Sardis – Rev. 3:5 – He that overcometh, the same shall be clothed in white raiment; and I will not blot out his name out of the book of life, but I will confess his name before my Father, and before his angels.
- Philadelphia – 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.
- Laodicea – 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.
The interesting part is that to each one of these churches Jesus Christ states that to him who overcometh will He reward and the ones that do not overcome, they do not receive a reward. Revelation 2:1 it states: Unto the angel of the church of Ephesus write; These things saith he that holdeth the seven stars in his right hand, who walketh in the midst of the seven golden candlesticks. We know from this verse that Jesus Christ walks in the midst all churches. There are two verses in The Book of Revelation that lets us know that, this not only applies to the seven churches that were in Asia, but also to Christians today. The first verse is Revelation 1:3 which states: 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. This verse lets us know that the things contained in this book are prophecy, meaning they will happen in the future. The second verse is, Revelation 1:18 which states: Write the things which thou hast seen, and the things which are, and the things which shall be hereafter. Jesus Christ Himself said this, and it is plainly and clearly telling us that these things are, and things that will be.
Next, we will see what it was that the churches were doing that Jesus Christ liked and didn’t like.
- Ephesus – Things Jesus liked – Rev. 2:2-3 – 2 I know thy works, and thy labour, and thy patience, and how thou canst not bear them which are evil: and thou hast tried them which say they are apostles, and are not, and hast found them liars: 3 And hast borne, and hast patience, and for my name’s sake hast laboured, and hast not fainted. Rev. 2:6 – But this thou hast, that thou hatest the deeds of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate. Things Jesus did not like – Rev. 2:4-5 – 4 Nevertheless I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love. 5 Remember therefore from whence thou art fallen, and repent, and do the first works; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will remove thy candlestick out of his place, except thou repent.
Jesus tells the church of Ephesus that you are very patient, and that you hate evil works, and you know the difference between true apostles and false apostles because you have tried them and found them to be liars. Jesus also tells them that, you have also suffered for my name’s sake. But, you continued to work and did not stop. The other thing that Christ liked was that this church hated the works of the Nicolaitans which Christ also hated. Nicolaitans, essentially went against the testimony/teachings of Jesus Christ. They brought their pagan traditions in and mixed it with Christ’s teachings to the point that the testimony/teachings became heretical because of the Nicolaitans. Jesus told the church of Ephesus that they must start doing the things that He liked, or else He will destroy the church of Ephesus. Discussion of one church is completed only 6 more to go. The next church we will discuss is the church of Smyrna. After discussion of the churches I will write why it is very important for us to know about these churches. Stay tuned, and as always you can follow me on twitter: