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Tag Archives: persecution

Rebuke the Adversary Until I Come!

Adversary

from Google Images

Presently I am involved in a study of the seven churches of Revelation 2 & 3, specifically at this time with the church of Thyatira (Revelation 2:29). Thyatira was the smallest of the seven cities, but it received the largest of Jesus’ letters. The church there was commended for several good things it had been doing, and Jesus even mentioned they were doing more or greater works in their latter ministry than they had been doing in the beginning (Revelation 2:19-20). Nevertheless, they were guilty of permitting a false prophetess, Jezebel (the Jerusalem authorities), to seduce his disciples, removing them from his protection and authority. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on April 18, 2019 in Apocalypse, Book of Revelation

 

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The Wrong Way to Preach the Gospel

Legalism - 1

from Google Images

Jesus told the church at Pergamos to repent (Revelation 2:16). That is, repent of believing and perhaps acting on the belief that they needed to join pagans in worship in order to gain them for Christ. Such a practice would end their persecution, but it would take away their witness. How could they testify of what it means to have Jesus as Lord, if they acted as though the pagan gods were lords as well? Mere doctrine saves no one. Jesus, not a better argument, saves people from their sins. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on April 4, 2019 in Apocalypse, Book of Revelation

 

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What Does Jesus Say about Pergamos?

Pergamum

from Google Images

In Revelation 2:13 Jesus told the church in Pergamos that he knew their works, which means he knew the Gospel they preached. Their works, or their business for Christ, was no different from the works of Ephesus or Smyrna or any of the other churches to whom Jesus sent letters via the Apocalypse. Their work is the Gospel they preached. Moreover, the Lord implied they had preached the Gospel during times of duress. Notice, he tells them that he knows they dwell in the place where Satan’s throne is. That is, the church preached the Gospel in the shadow of the power of the enemy. Things like this cannot be done without conflict of some kind. Secondly, Jesus told believers at Pergamos that he knew they continue to preach the Gospel, knowing that doing so could cost their lives, even as Antipas lost his life, while witnessing for Christ. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on March 28, 2019 in Apocalypse, Book of Revelation

 

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The Church in Pergamos

Pen Mightier than the Sword

from Google Images

Pergamos was an ancient city in Mysia, some sixty miles northeast of Smyrna and the northern most city on the ancient Roman mail route in the Province of Asia. Pergamos is the Latin pronunciation of the Greek Pergamum. The original city was situated atop of a prominent mountain along the Caicus river, which emptied into the Aegean Sea about twenty miles west of the city. Later the city was built at the foot of the mountain, and the city’s temples to various gods stood atop the mount. Its name, Pergamos (G4010) is taken from pergos (G4444), meaning: tower or a fortified structure, so the mountain (viz. tower) formed a citadel, giving the impression that the city’s gods were able to withstand any attack of an enemy. Unlike Smyrna and Ephesus, which were renowned for their trade on the Aegean Sea, Pergamos was known for its culture and refinement, boasting of its large library whose only rival was that of Alexandria in Egypt, and its many temples to the honor of its numerous gods, including Asclepius, the serpent god of medicine and health. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on March 26, 2019 in Apocalypse, Book of Revelation

 

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You Will Have Tribulation Ten Days

Ten Days

from Google Images

According to Revelation 2:10, Jesus said the church at Smyrna would have tribulation for ten days. Many things have been written about what this might mean. Some conclude it points to 10 seasons of Roman emperors,[1] but this doesn’t seem correct to me, since at least in the case of Domitian, there is no evidence in history that he persecuted Christians. Moreover, Jesus’ ten days probably have little to do with the number of men, otherwise he might have been clearer. Why leave such a thing up to speculation? Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on March 21, 2019 in Apocalypse, Book of Revelation

 

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Wise as Serpents but Harmless as Doves

Serpent

from Google Images

If Jesus told the churches in Asia, especially those in Smyrna, that they were about to undergo a season of persecution (Revelation 2:10), how did he expect them to act? I find it interesting how Paul reacted to the persecution that he endured after he became a believer. He didn’t face it the same way when he found himself experiencing the wrath of the enemy. Not long after Paul became a believer, he found his life in danger, but instead of demanding his rights and going toe to toe with his enemies, he simply escaped their wrath by running away (Acts 9:20). Simply put, it may not be necessary to endure persecution every time it rears its ugly head. Paul fled his persecutors in Damascus, just as Jesus said believers should do (Matthew 10:23), and not only did Paul do so in Damascus, but he also fled his persecutors in Jerusalem (Acts 9:29-30), and again in Thessalonica (Acts 17:2-5), Berea (Acts 17:13-15), Ephesus (Acts 19:26-30; 20:1), Corinth (Acts 20:2-3), and Jerusalem a second time (Acts 23:12-23, 31), and a third time he sought to prevent being forced to go there (Acts 25:7-12). Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on March 19, 2019 in Apocalypse, Book of Revelation

 

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Don’t Be Afraid of Their Slander

Slander

from Google Images

Just as he had often told his disciples (Matthew 14:27; 17:6-7; 28:10), the very first thing Jesus told the church in Smyrna was don’t be afraid of anything they were about to face in his name (Revelation 2:10). There was no need for fear, because Jesus revealed himself as “the first and the last” (Revelation 2:8), so their enemies cannot do anything to them that Jesus doesn’t first allow (Isaiah 41:1-4). Moreover, he intends to show them he is with them and will help them, and, not only so, but even in their tribulation they will be successful in preaching the Gospel (Isaiah 44:1-6). No weapon formed against them will prevail, and in the end, they will judge those who judge them (Isaiah 54:17). Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on March 17, 2019 in Apocalypse, Book of Revelation

 

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