20 October 2015

BSF 2015-2016: Revelation 2:12-3:6

Let’s talk about the letters Jesus sent to the next three churches – Pergamum, Thyatira, and Sardis.

In the letter to the church in Pergamum, Jesus described Himself as coming with a sharp, double-edged sword. The sword represents the Word of God. He was telling the church in Pergamum to be more concerned with Jesus’ sword than with the Romans’ swords.

Jesus commended the church in Pergamum for being faithful. But it also was compromising in the areas of sexual immorality and eating foods sacrificed to idols. Jesus commands the church to repent from these false teaching.

Jesus commended the church in Thyatira for its good service, but He said it also tolerated evil in the prophet Jezebel. The Jezebel mentioned in Revelation was used to point to the Old Testament prophetess who encouraged people to worship false idols. The mention in Revelation points to an evil person in Thyatira.

Jesus promised that the Jezebel in Thyatira as well as all of those who followed her false teaching would be punished with a bed of suffering. Jesus told this church to hold on to the truth they knew. We must not mix our Christian values with the world’s values (tolerate or compromise), and we must not discriminate against those in the world. We must share the truth of the Gospel with them. Christians must hold tightly to the basics of the Christian faith and avoid any new teachings that take us away from God’s Word and the fellowship of believers.

The church in Sardis had a good reputation, but Jesus knew it was dead on the inside. This church was complacent and spiritually dead. Jesus commanded this church to wake up and remember what He called them to do.

Jesus called these three churches to repent. Repentance involves a conviction of sin, a contrition for sin (a sorrow or repulsiveness for sin), and a conversion from sin (turning away from sin and back to God).

Things to Think About

  • Is there an area where I’m compromising with the world to avoid suffering or to achieve success?
  • Is anyone influencing me to rationalize behavior that God’s Word forbids?
  • When we are spiritually tired, we must persevere and not let Satan take control of us.

This Week’s Memory Verse
“The one who is victorious will, like them, be dressed in white. I will never blot out the name of that person from the book of life, but will acknowledge that name before my Father and his angels.” Revelation 3:5 NIV