Pergamum A Double-Minded Church

PergamosPreaching against worldliness may be passé in the modern church, but with Christ it has never gone out of style. When He introduces Himself to the church at Pergamum, Jesus describes Himself as “He which hath the sharp sword with two edges.” He was not giving them a warm welcome. He was reminding them that He is Judge and Executioner, and that His judgment begins in His own house. Pergamum was a worldly church and Jesus was having no part of it because “the friendship of the world is enmity with God” (see Ephesians 2:16). Continue reading

Ephesus: Right on the Outside, Wrong on the Inside

The Letters to the Seven Churches: Background

By Caliniuc - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, LinkThis letter from John was written to the seven key churches of Asia Minor (modern Turkey). They were representative of the churches throughout the region and were chosen, in part, because they were located in the key cities of Asia Minor’s seven postal districts, making them central points for disseminating information. The order in which these churches are listed is the same order as the postal route. When a messenger arrived at Miletus, he would travel north to Ephesus and then follow a clockwise route to the other six cities. So, when Jesus delivers His messages to the churches, He begins with Ephesus. Continue reading

A Lord to be Feared, a Savior to be Trusted

After finishing his description of the glorified Savior, John describes his reaction. It is the only reaction one could have at such a sight: “And when I saw Him, I fell at His feet as dead” (Revelation 1:17).  Like the prophet Isaiah, John was completely undone at the sight of God in His glory. Unlike the prophet, however, he was not viewing this at a distance. In Isaiah chapter 6, the prophet saw God in His temple, surrounded by angels. The Lord was observed at a distance. In Revelation, John is close enough to fall at the Savior’s feet and the Lord is close enough to touch him. What we enjoy as believers is a close and intimate relationship with our Savior. The cross of Christ has closed the distance between us. Continue reading