“4 John to the seven churches that are in Asia: “Grace to you and peace from him who is and who was and who is to come, and from the seven spirits who are before his throne, 5 and from Jesus Christ the faithful witness, the firstborn of the dead, and the ruler of kings on earth.” Revelation 1:4-5
Today, we are going to go over the 7 churches in the book of Revelation. These churches were actual churches that existed when John received the message to write this book; however, these churches also can represent the 7 complete church ages for all time, and they can also relate to the various churches that we have at this age, just as it was in John’s time. And finally, each of these can relate to us personally, so as we go through these, as a Christian, it is super important to see what traits you have related to each church and then, if you find yourself in any of the 5 churches in need of reproach, then be careful to follow Jesus’ instructions in order to be saved from the hour of trial upon the earth.
May Jesus Christ convict us all as we go through this study to see if we are lacking in any area and are in need of a wake up call to turn around before the final 7th church ends.
All of these are paraphrased from Revelation 2-3 (Pull out your Bibles for the full reading)
- To the Church in Ephesus
- Good: You do good works, work hard, patiently endure, and have not grown weary. You don’t put up with those who are evil and who are false prophets.
- Bad: Your love has grown cold for God and you’ve abandoned the love you first had. Your works are not done out of love for the Father as your focus. You look good on the outside, but on the inside you are dead.
- To Do: Remember your love for God, repent for your lack of love, and do the things you did at first to rekindle your love for God.
- If Not: Jesus will remove you from His presence.
- If Done: To the one who conquers I will grant to eat of the tree of life, which is in the paradise of God.
- To the Church in Smyrna
- Good: You have endured poverty, slander, and tribulation because of your faith.
- Bad: N/A
- To Do: Do not fear what you are about to suffer. Be faithful unto death, and I will give you the crown of life.
- Result: Some of you will be thrown in prison where you will be tested and be in tribulation for 10 days.
- Result: The one who conquers will not be hurt by the second death.
- To the Church in Pergamum
- Good: You live near Satan’s throne yet you still stand strong and uphold the name of Jesus, not denying your faith, even though some have died because of their faith.
- Bad: You are holding to some false teachings as you’ve accepted some concepts from other religions into your own. The truth, as originally given to you, is no longer with you. False truth is being presented and accepted as truth. You practice sexual immorality as you do not uphold the covenant of relations between one man and woman in marriage.
- To Do: Repent.
- If Not: Jesus will come to you soon and war against you with the sword of His mouth.
- Result: To the one who conquers I will give some of the hidden manna, and I will give him a white stone, with a new name written on the stone that no one knows except the one who receives it.’
- To the Church in Thyatira
- Good: You do good works and have love, faith, service, and patient endurance, and that your good works today are even greater than when you first believed.
- Bad: You tolerate false teachers and portions of other religions within you (including the deep things of Satan), including that of sexual immorality.
- Consequences: Those who follow the ways of the false teachers will be throw into great tribulation, unless you repent of your works, I will give to each of you according to your works.
- To Do: Do not listen to or do what the false teachers teach or do. Hold fast to the Word until Jesus comes.
- Result: The one who conquers and who keeps my works until the end, to him I will give authority over the nations, 27 and he will rule[c] them with a rod of iron, as when earthen pots are broken in pieces, even as I myself have received authority from my Father.
- To the Church in Sardis
- Good: You do good works. A few of you still have not soiled your garments in sin and you will walk with Jesus in white as you alone are worthy.
- Bad: Your works are for the wrong reason. They are not by the power of Jesus and for your own glory. Your works are dead. They are not complete in the site of God.
- To Do: Wake up and strengthen what is left before it dies. Remember what you heard and received at first. Obey it and repent
- If Not: I will come like a thief, and you will not know at the hour I will come against you.
- Result: People who have not soiled their garments, and they will walk with me in white, for they are worthy. 5 The one who conquers will be clothed thus in white garments, and I will never blot his name out of the book of life. I will confess his name before my Father and before his angels.
- To the Church in Philadelphia
- Good: You have good works. You have little power, yet you have obeyed His Word and not denied His name. You have kept His Word with patient endurance.
- Bad: N/A
- To Do: Hold fast what you have, so that no one may seize your crown.
- If Not: N/A
- Result: Behold, I have set before you an open door, which no one is able to shut. I will make those who say they are Jews, but really the synagogue of Satan, bow down at your feet and they will learn that I have loved you. I will keep you from the hour of trial that is coming on the whole world, to try those who dwell on the earth. 11 I am coming soon. The one who conquers, I will make him a pillar in the temple of my God. Never shall he go out of it, and I will write on him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, the new Jerusalem, which comes down from my God out of heaven, and my own new name.
- To the Church in Laodicea
- Good: N/A – No good.
- Bad: Your ‘good’ works are neither hot nor cold. You are a fence sitter who is lukewarm. You are wretched, pitiable, poor, blind, and naked. You say “I am rich and I have prospered and I need nothing.”
- To Do: Gain your richness instead from seeking Jesus so that you will receive white garments to cover your sin and that your eyes would be opened. Open the door in front of you that Jesus is knocking on.
- If Not: So, because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of my mouth. Those whom I love, I reprove and discipline, so be zealous and repent.
- Result: If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me. 21 The one who conquers, I will grant him to sit with me on my throne, as I also conquered and sat down with my Father on his throne.
Lord, convict us if there are any ways that we are not honoring you, following your path, or continuing in repentance. We want to be on fire for you and definitely not luke warm. In Jesus Name. Amen.