1“Write this to the angel of the church in Ephesus:
These are the words of the one who holds the seven stars in his right hand and walks among the seven gold lampstands: 2 I know your works, your labor, and your endurance. I also know that you don’t put up with those who are evil. You have tested those who say they are apostles but are not, and you have found them to be liars. 3 You have shown endurance and put up with a lot for my name’s sake, and you haven’t gotten tired. 4 But I have this against you: you have let go of the love you had at first. 5 So remember the high point from which you have fallen. Change your hearts and lives and do the things you did at first. If you don’t, I’m coming to you. I will move your lampstand from its place if you don’t change your hearts and lives. 6 But you have this in your favor: you hate what the Nicolaitans are doing, which I also hate. 7 If you can hear, listen to what the Spirit is saying to the churches. I will allow those who emerge victorious to eat from the tree of life, which is in God’s paradise.
8“Write this to the angel of the church in Smyrna:
These are the words of the one who is the first and the last, who died and came back to life: 9 I know your hardship and poverty (though you are actually rich). I also know the hurtful things that have been spoken about you by those who say they are Jews (though they are not, but are really Satan’s synagogue). 10 Don’t be afraid of what you are going to suffer. Look! The devil is going to throw some of you into prison in order to test you. You will suffer hardship for ten days. Be faithful even to the point of death, and I will give you the crown of life. 11 If you can hear, listen to what the Spirit is saying to the churches. Those who emerge victorious won’t be hurt by the second death.
12“Write this to the angel of the church in Pergamum:
These are the words of the one who has the sharp, two-edged sword: 13 I know that you are living right where Satan’s throne is. You are holding on to my name, and you didn’t break faith with me even at the time that Antipas, my faithful witness, was killed among you, where Satan lives. 14 But I have a few things against you, because you have some there who follow Balaam’s teaching. Balaam had taught Balak to trip up the Israelites so that they would eat food sacrificed to idols and commit sexual immorality. 15 In the same way, you have some who follow the Nicolaitans’ teaching. 16 So change your hearts and lives. If you don’t, I am coming to you soon, and I will make war on them with the sword that comes from my mouth. 17 If you can hear, listen to what the Spirit is saying to the churches. I will give those who emerge victorious some of the hidden manna to eat. I will also give to each of them a white stone with a new name written on it, which no one knows except the one who receives it.
18“Write this to the angel of the church in Thyatira:
These are the words of God’s Son, whose eyes are like a fiery flame, and whose feet are like fine brass. 19 I know your works, your love and faithfulness, your service and endurance. I also know that the works you have done most recently are even greater than those you did at first. 20 But I have this against you: you put up with that woman, Jezebel, who calls herself a prophet. You allow her to teach and to mislead my servants into committing sexual immorality and eating food sacrificed to idols. 21 I gave her time to change her heart and life, but she refuses to change her life of prostitution. 22 Look! I’m throwing her onto a sickbed. I am casting those who have committed adultery with her into terrible hardship—if they don’t change their hearts from following her practices— 23 and I will even put her children to death with disease. Then all the churches will know that I’m the one who examines minds and hearts, and that I will give to each of you what your actions deserve. 24 As for the rest of you in Thyatira—those of you who don’t follow this teaching and haven’t learned the so-called “deep secrets” of Satan—I won’t burden you with anything else. 25 Just hold on to what you have until I come. 26 To those who emerge victorious, keeping my practices until the end, I will give authority over the nations— 27 to rule the nations with an iron rod and smash them like pottery— 28 just as I received authority from my Father. I will also give them the morning star. 29 If you can hear, listen to what the Spirit is saying to the churches.
1“Write this to the angel of the church in Sardis:
These are the words of the one who holds God’s seven spirits and the seven stars: I know your works. You have the reputation of being alive, and you are in fact dead. 2 Wake up and strengthen whatever you have left, teetering on the brink of death, for I’ve found that your works are far from complete in the eyes of my God. 3 So remember what you received and heard. Hold on to it and change your hearts and lives. If you don’t wake up, I will come like a thief, and you won’t know what time I will come upon you. 4 But you do have a few people in Sardis who haven’t stained their clothing. They will walk with me clothed in white because they are worthy. 5 Those who emerge victorious will wear white clothing like this. I won’t scratch out their names from the scroll of life, but will declare their names in the presence of my Father and his angels. 6 If you can hear, listen to what the Spirit is saying to the churches.
7“Write this to the angel of the church in Philadelphia:
These are the words of the one who is holy and true, who has the key of David. Whatever he opens, no one will shut; and whatever he shuts, no one opens. 8 I know your works. Look! I have set in front of you an open door that no one can shut. You have so little power, and yet you have kept my word and haven’t denied my name. 9 Because of this I will make the people from Satan’s synagogue (who say they are Jews and really aren’t, but are lying)—I will make them come and bow down at your feet and realize that I have loved you. 10 Because you kept my command to endure, I will keep you safe through the time of testing that is about to come over the whole world, to test those who live on earth. 11 I’m coming soon. Hold on to what you have so that no one takes your crown. 12 As for those who emerge victorious, I will make them pillars in the temple of my God, and they will never leave it. I will write on them the name of my God and the name of the city of my God, the New Jerusalem that comes down out of heaven from my God. I will also write on them my own new name. 13 If you can hear, listen to what the Spirit is saying to the churches.
14“Write this to the angel of the church in Laodicea:
These are the words of the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the ruler[a] of God’s creation. 15 I know your works. You are neither cold nor hot. I wish that you were either cold or hot. 16 So because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I’m about to spit you out of my mouth. 17 After all, you say, ‘I’m rich, and I’ve grown wealthy, and I don’t need a thing.’ You don’t realize that you are miserable, pathetic, poor, blind, and naked. 18 My advice is that you buy gold from me that has been purified by fire so that you may be rich, and white clothing to wear so that your nakedness won’t be shamefully exposed, and ointment to put on your eyes so that you may see. 19 I correct and discipline those whom I love. So be earnest and change your hearts and lives. 20 Look! I’m standing at the door and knocking. If any hear my voice and open the door, I will come in to be with them, and will have dinner with them, and they will have dinner with me. 21 As for those who emerge victorious, I will allow them to sit with me on my throne, just as I emerged victorious and sat down with my Father on his throne. 22 If you can hear, listen to what the Spirit is saying to the churches.”
The above selected text is from the Common English Bible. Today I want to share with you this message:
If someone were to evaluate your Christian life right now, which of the seven churches mentioned in Revelations Chapter 2 and 3 above would they say most closely your life resembles? Think about this for a while. Once you have the church that your spiritual life represents take the next step.
We’ve diagnosed the problem now let’s go to the Word of God and find the cure that Jesus Christ recommends for the church or your illness. Find the church that your life closely resembles in Revelations 2 and 3. What does the Word of God suggest to this church to fix their condition? That is your cure also.
Let’s go one step further. Let’s actually put that cure to work. So many times we as Christians find the cure in God’s Word for whatever ails us, but we never become doers of the Word. Just hearers and seekers. If you don’t put the cure to work for you, you’ll never be an effective servant for the Lord.
I am here to tell you, you can live a victoriously life now! Not one as a sickly Christian, but a mighty man/woman of God.
Have you selected your Bible version to read for 2012? Why not choose the Common English Version. You can win your very own copy here at Melissa’s Musings. Just send me an email, comment, like (but make sure your blog has a way of getting in touch with you in case you win, share my posts, tweet, etc. I am drawing one winner a week until January 31, 2012.
Until Next Time,