December 20

December 20

Revelation & the Seven Churches — Jesus’ promise to the church will be fulfilled by Him
Today’s Readings:
Reading 1: Revelation 2
Reading 2: Revelation 3
Reading 3: Matthew 16:18

The seven churches to which Jesus writes (through John) are located in Asia Minor (today’s Turkey) and you can see their locations on a Map here.

The seven churches display certain characteristics of churches both then and now:

  1. Ephesus (Revelation 2:1-7) – the busy church
  2. Smyrna (Revelation 2:8-11) – the persecuted church
  3. Pergamum (Revelation 2:12-17) – the compromising church
  4. Thyatira (Revelation 2:18-29) – the tolerating church
  5. Sardis (Revelation 3:1-6) – the dying church
  6. Philadelphia (Revelation 3:7-13) – the enduring church
  7. Laodicea (Revelation 3:14-22) – the lukewarm church

Some commentators also draw parallels between the seven actual churches and seven divisions of Church history:

Ephesus: The Apostolic age (AD 30-100)
Smyrna: The Persecuted age (AD100-312)
Pergamum: The Indulged/Compromising stage (AD300-600)
Thyatira: The Pagan church (AD600 until the tribulation)
Sardis: The Dead church (AD1520 until the tribulation)
Philadelphia: The Loved church (AD1750 until the tribulation)
Laodicea: The Apostate church (AD1900 until the tribulation)
We can each relate to some or all of the churches, and the Words of Jesus to each are as relevant today as they were then, because Jesus is building His Church on the revelation that He is the Christ, the Son of the Living God.
That is who we serve, and who has a plan for each one of us.

Have a great day!

Mark.

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