Atheism
The absence of belief in God or any other deities.
Heathen
A person or group that does not acknowledge a particular religion, most often Judaism, Christianity, or Islam. In the Old Testament “heathen” referred to anyone who did not follow and worship the God of Israel.
Synagogue
A Jewish house of assembly, prayer, and study.
Second Advent
The Second Coming of Christ. He will return with His angels to take His people home to heaven.
Historic continuous
A way of understanding Bible prophecy and history, where prophecy is unfolding on a continuum. Some prophecies have been fulfilled throughout history, others are coming to fruition now and until the very end of time. According to this school of thought, the Bible is timely and for everyone, and everyone must determine where they are in the stream of time. Read more about historicism
Revelation 3 Commentary
Summary: Read Revelation 3 KJV along with a helpful commentary.
 
 

Revelation 3 continues the vision of the seven churches, specifically the churches of Sardis, Philadelphia, and Laodicea. These churches were located along the old Roman postal route and were situated approximately 50 km from each other. Each has prophetic and spiritual applications and each represents a period of time in church history.

Sardis

Revelation 3 KJV
1 And unto the angel of the church in Sardis write; These things saith he that hath the seven Spirits of God, and the seven stars; I know thy works, that thou hast a name that thou livest, and art dead. 2Be watchful, and strengthen the things which remain, that are ready to die: for I have not found thy works perfect before God.

3Remember therefore how thou hast received and heard, and hold fast, and repent. If therefore thou shalt not watch, I will come on thee as a thief, and thou shalt not know what hour I will come upon thee.

Commentary
The restored Roman gymnasium at Sardis.
Watch Seven Churches on ADtv for more information....


3:1-3 Sardis (today called Sart) was the capital of the province of Lydia, situated some 40 kilometers southwest of Thyatira. The city stood on a hill, and at the foot of that hill were the temples of Artemis and Zeus.

The city was situated 1000 feet up on the side of a mountain and in view of Sardis’ location and natural protection, the people of Sardis considered the city impregnable. They felt so secure that their guard was not always up in time of crisis. History reveals that the city was conquered without resistance by both Cyrus and Antiochus, and in this lies a spiritual lesson. Both times the enemy sneaked in and opened the gates while the people of Sardis slept.

Prophetic Application


Sardis means “that which remains.” Prophetically, Sardis represents the Church from approximately 1798 to 1843. During the initial brilliance of the Reformation, many errors of the Dark Ages were exposed. Many old truths were rediscovered, such as: salvation by faith in Jesus, the Bible as the only rule of faith and doctrine and Christ as the only Mediator between God and man. The Reformation was rooted in Christ. It is the Gospel of Christ that led the reformers out of the spiritual darkness that had all but extinguished the flame of Christianity.

Sadly, this early fervor was gradually replaced by formalities as the community and the state accepted the new churches. In spite of the heroic contributions of the individual Protestant leaders like Martin Luther, John Calvin and Roger Williams, the impetus for reform did not last. As the fervent pioneers of each reform movement passed from the scene, the movement lost its fervor and became spiritually cold and weak. Protestant Europe and the United States in the mid-1700s had become comfortable with formal religion, devoid of spirituality.

The Church claimed to be spiritually alive and reformed, as if living off the glory of the past, but in reality it was dead. The Lord intended that the Reformation would continue until the pure Gospel was restored, but the followers of the reformers refused to advance beyond the truths which their leaders had discovered. John 12:35-36; Hebrews 5:12-6:2.

The inability of the various reform factions to find unity based on the Word also led to the formation of numerous denominations, each adopting the creed of its founders. The great work of reform faltered and even resulted in bitter infighting.

Right away in His opening address, Christ gives the Church a warning, implying the Church had a false sense of security, and an element of death or hypocrisy. To the casual observer, the Church seemed to be alive, but in reality it was dead. There was a false understanding of their own lack. "I know thy works, that thou hast a name that thou livest, and art dead" (Revelation 3:1).

This mention of death takes us directly into the post-Reformation period, from the close of the Council of Trent in 1563, to the beginning of the great religious awakening in the 18th century. This period has been fittingly described as "the age of dead orthodoxy." Instead of the reformers continuing their work of restoration, they submitted to the protection and support of the civil authorities. While separating from Rome, the Protestant Church became subject to the state.

The Counter Reformation launched by the Roman Catholic Church gradually eroded faith in the Scriptures and even set the tone for tolerance and acceptance of the teachings of Rome. The Church of Sardis was given this warning: "If therefore thou shalt not watch, I will come on thee as a thief, and thou shalt not know what hour I will come upon thee."

4Thou hast a few names even in Sardis which have not defiled their garments; and they shall walk with me in white: for they are worthy.

3:4 The Reformation had failed to fortify itself against complacency and became the easy prey of those who wished to destroy it.

Commendations: Nevertheless, there were many in the Sardis period who were eager for Biblical truth and were eager for a vibrant experience with Christ. In the midst of persecution, many courageous reformers were willing to lay down their lives rather than to deny Christ. It is to these that Christ says, "Thou hast a few names even in Sardis which have not defiled their garments; and they shall walk with me in white: for they are worthy" (Revelation 3:4).



5He that overcometh, the same shall be clothed in white raiment; and I will not blot out his name out of the book of life, but I will confess his name before my Father, and before his angels.

6He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches.

3:5-6 Promise: The message to Sardis is a message calling believers back to the truth and to steadfastness in faith. The overcomers are promised “white raiment,” which is Christ’s righteousness. Being clothed with “white raiment” is a symbol of exchanging sin for righteousness. Zechariah 3:4-5. The way to become an overcomer is to remain faithful and continue to grow in Christ.

The book of life is introduced in this verse - a book of tremendous interest to all candidates of everlasting life. Here is a book containing the names of all those who have met the conditions of entering the heavenly Kingdom. But implied in this verse is the danger that, after our names have been entered in, they may be blotted out. If this was not the case, this warning would not have been given, showing that the once saved, always saved teaching of some evangelical teachers is unBiblical. Even the great apostle and missionary Paul feared the he himself might become a castaway. (1 Corinthians 9:27). Also referenced here is a definite point of time in the future when this work of blotting out will take place. It references the time mentioned by Peter in Acts 3:19: "Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord."

If the overcomer's name will not be blotted out of the book of life, then it implies that his sins will not be remembered (Hebrews 8:12) and will be blotted out of the book in which they are recorded. This is exactly what we want to happen to each of us.

Christ taught that as we confess or deny, despise or honor Him here, we will be confessed or denied by Him before His Father in heaven, and before the holy angels. (Matthew 10:32,33Mark 8:38Luke 12:8,9) What an honor it is to be approved before all of heaven by Christ Himself - to be owned by the Lord as ones who have fought the good fight, and honored Him before men. This is the greatest achievement we could ever strive for.

Philadelphia

7And to the angel of the church in Philadelphia write; These things saith he that is holy, he that is true, he that hath the key of David, he that openeth, and no man shutteth; and shutteth, and no man openeth;

Amphitheater at Ancient Philadelphia . This 60,000 person theater was the main area for spectacles...


3:7 Philadelphia lies 45 kilometers east of Sardis and today the city of Alashehir stands where the ancient city stood. Philadelphia was situated at the foot of the mountains leading to Annatolia and, as such, was the doorway to this region. Due north of Antioch, this inland city was built by a Greek king in memory of his brother. The city was prone to earthquakes, and had to be periodically restored and rebuilt.

Prophetic Application


Church of St. John In Alaşehir (ancient Philadelphia) -- Creative Commons, Wikimedia...

Philadelphia represents The Church of the Great Second Advent Awakening, and spans 1844-1888. Philadelphia means “brotherly love.”

Prior to 1844, there was an extensive spiritual revival in many places around the world. The evangelical awakening in England and the great awakening in America revived the established churches and led to the formation of both the Baptist and Methodist church movements. These revivals stirred the Christian world to great missionary efforts. Many mission societies were formed and sent out missionaries, such as David Livingstone, all over the world. They also formed Bible societies, worked for the abolition of slavery, and began orphanages and colleges.

William Carey became the messenger to India in 1793, and Robert Morrison to China in 1807. In 1817, Robert Moffat carried the message to Africa and John Wesley challenged the doctrines of Calvin. Between 1804 and 1834, numerous Bible societies were established, and the door for the Gospel was opened.

As always in an age of spiritual enlightenment, Satan endeavored to destroy the work by the introduction of counterfeit movements. Spiritism in all its forms saw its modern revival at that time. Out of the French Revolution of 1789-1799 came the concepts of humanism and atheism that were to form the foundation stones for communism. The period also saw the rise of many false prophets who would claim special revelations contrary to the Word of God.



The extensive spiritual revival culminated in a great spiritual awakening as the soon return of Jesus and the prophecies of Daniel and Revelation were carefully studied and preached. This spiritual awakening was known as the Millerite (or 'advent') movement. The Millerite movement reaffirmed the truth of the Word and its prophetic importance.

One of those that participated in this advent movement writes about the fervour and feelings of that time, showing the "brotherly love" of this period:

Men from all denominations were convinced that the coming of Christ was near. As they came out of the various churches, they left sectarian names and feelings behind, and every heart beat in unison as all joined to give the alarm to the churches and to the world, and pointed to the coming of the Son of man as the believer's true hope. Selfishness and covetousness were laid aside, and a spirit of consecration and sacrifice was cherished. The Spirit of God was with every true believer, and His praise upon every tongue. Those who were not in that movement cannot fully realize how great was the searching of heart, the consecration to God, the peace and joy in the Holy Spirit, and the pure, fervent love for one another which true believers enjoyed.

The "key of David" is a reference to the rightful heir to David's throne - the Son of God Himself. David's throne is a symbol of great power and authority. David was promised that in his lineage would come the Son of God to sit on his throne. In Luke, Christ was promised the throne of David on which to reign, and this throne is included in the capital city, New Jerusalem. (Luke 1:32,33Revelation 21:1-5) He is to reign on this throne forever and ever.

i. Uriah Smith, Daniel and the Revelation, page 387.
ii. Uriah Smith, Daniel and the Revelation , page 388.

8I know thy works: behold, I have set before thee an open door, and no man can shut it: for thou hast a little strength, and hast kept my word, and hast not denied my name.

Model of the tabernacle in Timna Valley Park, Israel - Creative Commons License, Wikimedia...


3:8 In 1844, Jesus began the last phase of His heavenly ministry (Hebrews 8:2); He opened the door to the Most Holy Place of the heavenly sanctuary in 1844, and the antitypical Day of Atonement began. This is the “open door” here referred to. Although this doctrine is not well-known or popular, "no man can shut it" because it is set in time. It was shortly after 1844 that important Bible truths such as the seventh-day Sabbath and the work of Jesus as our High Priest in the heavenly sanctuary were rediscovered.

A figure (or pattern) of the heavenly sanctuary was created by Israel when they were in the desert. Moses was given the specifications, as evidenced in Exodus 25:8,9 Acts 4:7, and Hebrews 9:1,21, 23, 24. The earthly version had two apartments - the holy place and the most holy place. (Exodus 26:33,34). In the first apartment were the candlestick, the table of shewbread, and the altar of incense. In the second was the ark of the covenant, containing the ten commandments on tables of stone, and the cherubim on top(Hebrews 9:1-5). The sanctuary in heaven also has two apartments, and also has furniture similar to that of the earthly. The candlestick (Revelation 4:5), the altar of incense (Revelation 8:3), and the ark of the covenant (Revelation 11:19) are all seen in heaven in the book of Revelation. The ministry of these priests was a shadow of the ministry of Christ in the sanctuary in heaven. (Hebrews 8:4,5)

" A complete round of service was performed in the earthly tabernacle once every year. (Hebrews 9:7) But in the tabernacle above the service is performed once for all (Hebrews 7:279:12). At the close of the yearly typical service, the high priest entered the second apartment, the most holy place of the sanctuary, to make an atonement; and this work is appropriately called the cleansing of the sanctuary. (Leviticus 16:2030, 33Ezekiel 45:18) When the ministry in the most holy place began, that in the holy place ceased; and no service was performed there so long as the priest was engaged in the most holy place. (Leviticus 16:17)
A similar opening and shutting, or change of ministration, must be accomplished by Christ when the time comes for the cleansing of the heavenly sanctuary. The time did come for this service to begin at the close of the 2300 days, in 1844. To this event the opening and shutting mentioned in the text under consideration can appropriately apply, the opening and shutting mentioned in the text under consideration can appropriately apply, the opening being that of Christ's ministration in the most holy place, and the shutting, its cessation in the first apartment, or holy place."

Thousands were put out of their churches and ridiculed for believing the prophecies of the Bible regarding the Second Advent of Jesus. Despite this, they kept patiently waiting for Christ’s return. The coldness and persecution of the churches which had rejected the message of the Second Coming of Christ brought the believers into a close “brotherly love” with one another.

"...for thou hast a little strength, and hast kept my word, and hast not denied my name." In 1843, those that believed in the second advent of Christ, thought He was coming, but instead they were greatly disappointed. A small group of believers continued to study, realized that their calculation of the event was off by 1 year due to the change from BC to AD, and looked for the second advent in the fall of 1844. Of course, Christ did not come back in 1844, because they had misjudged the meaning of the "cleansing of the sanctuary". This small group of advent believers had "a little strength" and persevered until they understood the meaning of the verses they were studying and the beautiful truth of the sanctuary was uncovered.

9Behold, I will make them of the synagogue of Satan, which say they are Jews, and are not, but do lie; behold, I will make them to come and worship before thy feet, and to know that I have loved thee.

3:9 This verse applies to those who did not keep pace with the light of truth that was being revealed, those that oppose Christians who do want to follow truth as it is revealed. Christ promises that such people will be made to confess that God loves those who stay faithful, obey His word, and follow in the knowledge of truth.

The Great Awakening of this time was met with suspicion and even hostility by the established churches of the day as they refused to accept new light on the Scriptures. The age of Philadelphia was an age of brotherly love among those who embraced the truths of the Second Coming of Christ, but they were derided and mocked for their stance.

The word Jews used here is a reference to Jewish Christians (see Romans 2:28-29; Galatians 3:28-29). The Jew referred to here represents those Christians who would reject the light and ridicule those who believed it.

10Because thou hast kept the word of my patience, I also will keep thee from the hour of temptation, which shall come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth.

11Behold, I come quickly: hold that fast which thou hast, that no man take thy crown.

12Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name.

13He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches.

Christian crosses carved into stone panels at Philadelphia in Turkey...

3:10-13 Reproof: None. The letter to Philadelphia contains no reproof. The time period it represents was to open the door to the Gospel so that it could be spread to the ends of the world. The Word of God was to be restored and truth would triumph.

Promise: The promise is given that the Philadelphian era would not be subjected to the time of trouble prophesied by Daniel that was to precede the coming of Christ. And this did indeed happen, as that time has not yet come. The promise of Christ's soon return given in verse 11 ("Behold I come quickly") is further evidence of the historic continuous nature of the prophetic content of the letters to the seven churches. Here in the church of Philadelphia the nearness of Christ's soon coming is emphasized because this church takes place during the "time of the end" and encapsulates the proclamations of Christ's soon coming that were given during this period.

To the Church of the Middle Ages (Thyatira) the message was given to "hold fast what you have till I come" (Revelation 2:25), whereas in Philadelphia the Church is given the same admonition but this time in reference to His soon return. The Great Disappointment came as a major blow to many in the Advent movement and the counsel to "Hold fast what you have that no one may take your crown" (Revelation 3:11) is appropriate for this era.



"Not I, but Christ" was the watchword of the Philadelphian Christians, and the same motto should be for all of Christ's followers. Once we lay our selves down in humility, Christ and His love can conquer through us. The Word-based unity and love-based community of the Church of Philadelphia is a shining example of what all who aspire to follow Christ should seek to acquire.

As pillars they are honored for their support of Christ’s church and their salvation is guaranteed. Names indicated character and ownership, thus they are given the character of God and proclaimed as His special people, citizens of His glorious city.

Laodicea

14And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God;

3:14 Laodicea was situated 60 kilometers southeast of Philadelphia and was a famous health resort. They had a medical school which was famous for its warm mineral baths and its collyrium eye salve that was produced in that city.

Carving of cross into stone at Laodicea in Turkey -- 123rf.com...

The hot water for the baths were ingeniously piped to the resorts in insulated pipes, but because of the distances involved, the water was often only lukewarm by the time it arrived at its destination. The symbol of lukewarmness applied to the Laodicean Church is thus very appropriate.

Mineral-rich waters are also extremely unpalatable when taken lukewarm, and this feature makes the words of the Faithful and True Witness regarding those who refuse to accept His counsel all the more appropriate.

The city was a place of commerce. The people were very rich and proud of it. The merchants sold fine clothing made from soft, glossy, black wool. The church in Laodicea was likely established by Paul's companion Epaphras.i

The message to Laodicea is not a message of hopelessness. It is a message of hope. The message is not designed to discourage but to encourage. If the message is heeded, then the malady of the Church can be corrected. The message stems from One who can read the heart. It stems from the Faithful and True Witness—to deny the message is to deny the omnipotence of God.

The message is from the Amen—the One in whom there is no lie, the Creator. The word "beginning" is translated from the Greek arche, which, when taken in the active sense, means the initiator of the action, in this case Creation. In this introduction is concealed all the majesty of Christ, His character, and His law.

The memorial of His Creation is the Sabbath, which is also the seal of God making the law of God valid. The message to Laodicea is to His people, the remnant of those who obey God's commandments and hold the testimony of Jesus.

15I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot.

16So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth.

17Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked:

3:15-17 Laodicea is known as the “Lukewarm” Church. Laodicea is comprised of two words that mean “people” and “judgement.”

Prophetic Application


Columns at Laodicea.

Watch Seven Churches on ADtv for more information....

Prophetically, this is the seventh and final period of Church history and stretches from 1888, when the Church began to lose its fervor, to the time of the Lord’s return. This is the period we live in today. It is the last Church, the last light bearer on Earth before the coming of Christ. This letter is to God's people in our time.



The True Witness says that God's last-day church is neither cold nor hot, but lukewarm. There is no state that could be more offensive to Christ than the open rebellion of a sinner, whose heart is filled with evil. This cannot possibly be what is meant by "cold" because Christ would never prefer a rebellious state to any other. The threat of rejection is because they neither cold nor hot.

A "hot" Christian would be one that is on fire for Christ, committed, earnest, studious, dedicated, in love with Christ, and motivated to share and witness his/her faith. A "cold" Christian is one that knows his or her condition - they are far from Christ, and they sense their need of salvation. They realize that they are in a lost condition. The "hot" and the "cold" Christian "feel" their state. This makes them perfect candidates for Christ's salvation and just where Christ would want them, for there is a sense of unfitness, a groping and seeking after something better. What a man feels he lacks and wants, he will earnestly strive to obtain. A person will not stay cold long.

A "lukewarm" Christian, on the other hand, does not realize his or her condition. There is a state of insensibility, an indifference, a supreme satisfaction. They feel they need nothing. There is a danger of the lukewarm person staying as they are. They are in a lost state but they are unaware of it, thinking that because they have some form of Christianity, they are a committed Christian when they are not. Anything less than 100% submitted commitment is not fully a Christian. The final Laodicean Church desperately needs to wake up and realize their state so that they can run to Christ for healing.

Jesus wishes that the Laodiceans were either cold or hot instead of lukewarm. The cold people can be made to feel their need, the hot ones are on fire for the Lord, but the lukewarm ones congratulate themselves that they aren’t cold and don’t realize how far from hot they have become. They don’t realize how truly destitute of spiritual riches they are; they are blind to their true spiritual condition and don’t know that they are naked, devoid of Christ’s robe of righteousness. This is the condition of God’s church today. Jesus compares them to a revolting mouthful of lukewarm water.

Commendation: The Laodiceans are not rebuked for fraternizing with the Nicolaitanes, or having the doctrine of Balaam, or harboring a Jezebel in their midst as previous churches were. This implies that they have a correct doctrine, which implies a kind of commendation, but unfortunately, they are content with that, over a deep relationship with Christ.

In all the letters, except the letter to Laodicea, there is a commendation, and it is vital for God's people at the end of time to take heed of the Laodicean counsel because, sadly, we have done nothing to commend because we are satisfied with being "right" rather than "righteous". Understanding truth, having true doctrine, believing the truth, is not enough if it does not permeate our very being, and change us so that the truth is lived out through faith, hope, love, and good works.

18I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see.

Christian crosses carved into stone panels at Philadelphia in Turkey...

3:18 Jesus, the source of true riches, wants His people to come to Him and exchange their unbelief and selfishness for the purified gold of faith and love. 1 Peter 1:7; Galatians 5:6. He wants us to trade our sin and our useless works for His own robe of righteousness. Revelation 19:8; Isaiah 61:10. He bids us give up our mistaken view that we are spiritually healthy, and open our eyes to our true condition. 2 Peter 1:5-9. He offers us eyesalve, conviction graciously bestowed by the Holy Spirit, to help us see our condition.

The one thing that can be said of a Laodicean is that they are not hypocrite. They do not know that they are poor, miserable, blind and naked. We are instructed to "buy" these things from Christ, but how do we do that? Isaiah 55:1 tells us "Ho, every one that thirsteth, come ye to the waters, and he that hath no money; come ye, buy, and eat; yea, come, buy wine and milk without money and without price."

We can buy the necessary virtues just by asking, by simply coming and receiving, giving nothing in return. We receive the bread that perishes not, spotless raiment that soils not, riches that corrupt not, and an inheritance that does not fade away. We may come as beggars but we receive all the treasures of His grace. Christ receives our worthlessness, and we receive His blessings.

Gold represents spiritual riches. To be rich towards God, rich in the spiritual sense, is to have a clear title to the promises, to be an heir of the incorruptible inheritance promised in 1 Peter 1:4 and Galatians 3:29. We obtain this heirship just as Abraham did, through faith. Romans 4:13,14. Faith is a principle element of spiritual wealth. Hebrews 11:1. Faith also works by love and is rich in good works. (Galatians 5:61 Timothy 6:18), which bring us to 1 Corinthians 13 where the 3 virtues associated together are mentioned: "faith, hope and love".

"White Raiment" represents Christ's righteousness. Isaiah 64:6 says "All our righteousnesses are a filthy rags." (Also Zechariah 3:3,4). We can buy the clean spotless robe of Jesus through faith and thus be accounted righteous, not by our own works.

"Eyesalve" represents spiritual discernment that is quickened by the Holy Spirit. In Acts 10:38, Jesus is anointed with the Holy Ghost. We are to receive that same anointing (1 John 2:20, 27John 14:26; 16:13).

19As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent.

20Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.

21To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne.

22He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches.

3:19-22 In this last message to the last church Christ pleads with His people for repentance and faithfulness. The rebuke is designed to wake us up out of our slumber. "As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten." Hebrews 12:8. If we are without chastisement, we are not children of God. (Hebrews 12:8)

A general law of His gracious economy is here set forth....As all need chastisement in some measure, they in some measure receive it, and thus have proof of the Saviour's attachment. This is a hard lesson to learn, and believers are dull scholars; yet here and throughout God's word ad providence it stands, that trials are His benedictions, and that no child escapes the rod. The incorrigibly misshapen and coarse-grained blocks are rejected, whilst those chosen for the glorious structure are subjected to the chisel and the hammer. There is no cluster on the true vine but must pass through the winepress.... In view, then, of the origin and design of the chastisements you receive, 'Be zealous and repent.' Lose no time; lose not a blow of the rod, but repent at once. Be fervent in spirit. Such is the first appliance of encouragement." i

Although coldness is preferred over lukewarmness, Jesus asks our hearts to be aglow with fervent joy and zealous in the service of our Master.

Promise: Despite the fact that there is no commendation but only the sternest rebukes, this church is given the greatest promises. Christ pictures Himself knocking on our heart’s door. In heaven, there are no doors closed to Christ.

He is the life of every heart, the light in every eye, the song on every tongue, in glory. But He goes round from door to door in Laodicea. He stands at each, and knocks, because He came to see and to save that which was lost, because He cannot give up the purpose of communicating eternal life to as many as the Father hath given Him, and because He cannot become known to the inmate unless the door be opened and a welcome given Him. Have you bought five yoke of oxen, is your hat in your hand, and do you pray to be excused? He knocks and knocks. But you cannot receive company at present; you are worn out with labor; you have wheeled round the sofa; you are making yourself comfortable, and you send word you are engaged. He knocks and knocks....It is the hour for church prayer meeting... there is opportunity to pay a Christian visit to an individual or a family; but you move not....Oh, nauseous lukewarmness! Oh, fatal worldliness! The Lord of glory comes all the way from His celestial palace--comes in poverty, in sweat, in blood--comes to the door of a professed friend, who owes all to Him, and cannot get in!--comes to rescue a man whose house is on fire, and he will not admit Him! Oh, the height, the depth, of Jesus Christ's forbearance! Even the heathen Publius received Paul, and lodged him three days courteously. Shall nominal Christians tell the Lord of apostles they have no room for Him? ii

From this verse, we also learn that Christ sits on two thrones. He sits on His Father's throne and His own. Whoever invites Him to come in will enjoy the closest relationship with Him, receive the power to become an overcomer and have the great honor to sit with Him on His throne. Luke 12:37; John 14:23.

Have you given your life to Him? If not, you can do it right now by praying this simple prayer: "Dear Jesus, please forgive me of my sins. (Confess to Him the ones that you can remember.) Thank you for your life, your death and your resurrection for me. I accept you as my personal Lord and Saviour, and claim your free gift of eternal life. In Jesus’ name I pray, amen."

i. Augustus C. Thompson, Morning Hours in Patmos, pp. 260,261
ii.Ibid. pp. 261-264

 

Ahead to Revelation 4

Science Deceptions
Media Deceptions
Reformation
Spiritual Deceptions
A Basis for Conflict
Is there evidence for Creation science? How does it compare to evolution? The following articles give insight in to these questions and more.
Conforming Under Pressure Evolution Is Not Science—It's Religion Creation and Evolution: Is Compromise Possible? How Can We See Stars That Are Billions Of Light Years Away? Understanding the Creation Week The Rise of Evolutionary Thinking Geocentricity: It's Time to Face the Facts Earth's History: Conflicting Paradigms Lamarck Proposes Natural Selection Where did the Universe Come From? Age Of The Earth Evidence for a Young Universe Is Carbon-Dating Accurate? Flood Chronology
Evidence in Stone
Can we understand the age of the earth by the rocks? What theory does the evidence support?
Soft Rock Evidence for Rapid Washout
The Fossil Record
What does the fossil record show us? Is it all random or a defined science that we can understand? Where does evolution fit? Uncover mysteries in the history of the Earth.
Order in the Fossil Record Evolution of the Horse Evolutionary Sequences Explosive Evolution Fossils prove a Flood Fossil Footprints Dinosaurs and the Flood Petrified Trees The Biblical Flood Reasons For Extinction Fossil Reefs The Post-Flood World Human Evolution
Genes of Genesis
As we study the genome, the molecule, and the atom, we see a vast network of intricate systems beyond our understanding. Were these systems really formed by chance?
Mechanisms For Variation Built-in Variation in the Gene Pool Why So Many Species - Glossary Is the Gastraea Hypothesis Viable? "Species" versus "Kind" Molecules That Began Life Creating Life in a Test Tube? Post-Flood Distribution Answering Questions Natural Selection Reproductive Exchange Natural Selection as a Creative Force Transposable Elements Recombination of Chromosomes The Evidence of Things Not Seen Ernst Haeckel's Theories Dinosaur Extinction and Global Catastrophe Variation and Classification Jesus Christ—All Things Become New Why So Many Species? Evolution: Miracle of Miracles Is The Grand Canyon Proof of Noah's Flood? Spiders and the Creative Genius of God Things That Negate Evolution: Snake Legs Wrong Assumptions in C-14 Dating Methods Rapid Cave Formation The Australian Problem Synesthesia: Mystery of God’s Creation
Creation to Restoration
How did this world change from the perfection depicted in Genesis to a world full of thorns, thistles, parasites, and death? If God made everything perfect, how could it have all been so changed?
A Good World Gone Bad An Imperfect Planet Evidence For Design Evidence For Transformation Rapid Transformation Clean and Unclean: The History of the Human Diet The Dawn Chorus and Life Forces
Archaeology and the Bible
Archaeology and prophecy have proven the Bible to be true. But what's so special about the Bible that makes it a point of so much controversy?
Archaeology Confirms the Bible Tyre and the Bible Petra and the Bible Egypt and the Bible Babylon and the Bible The Lost Books of the Bible
Crossing Musical Boundaries
Music is a powerful emotional motivator that crosses cultural and language barriers. Its message can be understood by every culture and people across the planet.
The Philosophers Talk Music Elvis, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Christianity The Beat The Pursuit of Pleasure Music and Worship The Rave Can You Feel the Music? Whose Music? The Bible and Rock Music: Are they Compatible? The Ear The Last Great Contest – Worship Classical Music Therapy Music and the Frontal Lobe From the Horse's Mouth: The Rock Industry Condemns Itself
Hollywood and the Movies
What is the system of worship found most often in our society? Does it glorify God?
Hollywood's History Gnostic Themes in the Movies Hollywood and Gnosticism
Brain Closed—Please Come Again
Research has shown that our sensitivity to stimuli reduces itself yearly by about 1%. Is your brain hibernating?
The Dangers of Television
Beware of the television's abilities to hypnotize, alter moods, and even cause depression.
Violence and Video Games
Like music and movies, video games are addictive and can cause behavioral problems.
The Origins of Halloween
What is the origin behind this popular festival celebrated every October 31?
Introduction to the Reformation
What started the Protestant Reformation? Was the Reformation a success? Does it still matter today?
The Pope Claims to be God on Earth
Read proof that throughout the Roman Church's history, the Papacy has often claimed that the Pope is divine.
The Bloody History of Papal Rome - A Timeline
The oppression of Protestants is widespread and consistent throughout history.
The Bloody History of Papal Rome - Quotes
It was once written in America's oldest Catholic newspaper, the Boston Pilot, that "No good government can exist without religion, and there can be no religion without an Inquisition, which is wisely designed for the promotion and protection of the true faith.”

Read several authors' thoughts on papal Rome's history.
Catholic Councils
What happened at the Council of Trent? The First Vatican Council The Second Vatican Council
The Jesuits
Learn what people throughout history have had to say on the reputation, history, and political nature of the Jesuit Order.
An Introduction to the Jesuits Jesuits and the Hippie Movement Ignatius of Loyola and Martin Luther "Caring" and a New Morality Ignatius' Spiritual Exercises Ignatius Loyola and Spiritual Formation Protestantism Destroyed The Jesuit Superior General
Cross and Crown
This book "Cross and Crown" is a powerful and thrilling recital of the most romantic and dramatic incidents in history to be found on record, told in the simplest, most graphic, and entertaining form.
The Aggressive Intentions of the Papacy
The historian Ranke says this about Protestant-Catholic relations: "In the year 1617, everything betokened a decisive conflict between them. The Catholic party appears to have felt itself the superior. At all events it was the first to take up arms."

This article highlights quotes from historical and Catholic sources proving the Papacy's aggressive nature.
Christianity and Violence
Would the world be a safer place without Christian fundamentalism?
Stories of the Reformation
Dive into history to uncover the remarkable stories of faith and passion in early Protestantism.
An Italian mystic. A minister to a British king. An Augustine monk. A Swiss farmer's boy. What do these men have in common? They were used by God in powerful ways to bring about the Protestant Reformation. Enter into the lives of these ordinary people with extraordinary stories.
Inspiration for these articles comes from Gideon and Hilda Hagstoz' Heroes of the Reformation
Philipp Melanchthon John Laski Jerome of Prague John Wycliffe Louis De Berquin Gaspard De Coligny
Religious Doublespeak
Language can be used to communicate both truth and lies. Learn about the religious doublespeak being used to pull the wool over the eyes of the world.
Hegelian Thinking and World Politics
Hegelian dialectic thinking is applied in many situations in world politics. Often the ordinary people are used as pawns in the game of Hegelian psychology played by those who pull the strings of world control.
The Great Controversy
Read this classic work by Ellen G. White.
The Destruction of Jerusalem Persecution in the First Centuries An Era of Spiritual Darkness The Waldenses John Wycliffe Huss and Jerome Luther's Separation From Rome Luther Before the Diet The Swiss Reformer Progress of Reform in Germany Protest of the Princes The French Reformation The Netherlands and Scandinavia Later English Reformers The Bible and the French Revolution The Pilgrim Fathers Heralds of the Morning An American Reformer Light Through Darkness A Great Religious Awakening A Warning Rejected Prophecies Fulfilled What is the Sanctuary? In the Holy of Holies God's Law Immutable A Work of Reform Modern Revivals Facing Life's Record The Origin of Evil Enmity Between Man and Satan Agency of Evil Spirits Snares of Satan The First Great Deception Can Our Dead Speak to Us? Liberty of Conscience Threatened The Impending Conflict The Scriptures a Safeguard The Final Warning The Time of Trouble God's People Delivered Desolation of the Earth The Controversy Ended
Who is Jesus?
Is Jesus really who He says He is?
Did Jesus Ever Exist? Was Jesus the Messiah? Is Jesus God? Jesus: The Mercy Seat Is What Christianity Teaches True? The Godhead and the One True God Movement Why Did Jesus Have To Die? Six Purposes for Christ's Life and Death on Earth What Day Did Jesus Die? The 70-Week Prophecy Jesus, the Recycled Redeemer Names of Christ in Revelation
Prophecy
How will Christ return, and what will it mean for His people?
The First Beast—Comparing Daniel 7 and Revelation 13 Revelation Identifies End-Time Babylon The Second Beast of Revelation 13 Identifying the Antichrist The Final Confederacy Walking Through Daniel The Seven Plagues Walking through Revelation
Religious Trends
What are the trends in the religious world today? Sun Worship, The UN and the One World Religion, Eastern Mysticism and Spiritism... Just what do all these things mean in light of Bible prophecy?
Sun Worship Babylonian Religion The Charismatic Movement Politics and the Papacy Paganism and Mary Wealth Redistribution Unity at All Cost? Sustainability Spiritism throughout Religions Catholic Pentecostalism Paganism and Christmas Pentecostalism The Charismatic Movement and Spiritual Gifts Manifesting the Charismatic Spirit The New Age Movement Paganism in our Culture The United Nations' Global Government The History of Tongues Secret Societies Signs and Wonders Revival and the "Power of God" What’s So Bad about Spiritual Formation? Zionism
Sabbath
Most people can understand the reasoning behind nine of the Ten Commandments—don't kill, don't lie, don't steal. But what about the Sabbath Commandment? Why would God give such a law? Why should we follow it?
What is the Seventh-Day Sabbath? Creation and the Sabbath The Weekly Cycle Why Sunday? Sabbath FAQ
The Second Coming of Christ
How will Christ return, and what will it mean for His people?
Signs of The Second Coming of Christ The Second Coming of Christ Viewpoints How Christ will Return What will Happen to God's People? What will Happen to the Rejecters of God? Will there be a Secret Rapture? The Millennium of Peace
The Bible
Can the Bible be trusted to provide answers to our questions? Does it contain truth? Learn about the evidence that proves the Bible's authenticity.
Archaeology Confirms the Bible Choosing the Books of the Bible Studying Scripture Scripture is Inspired by God Testing the Gospel of Thomas Testing the Gospel of Judas The Spirit in Scripture The Lost Books of the Bible The Gospel Story Spiritual Gifts
Christian Living: Sin and Salvation
Consider the crucial points of the Christian life.
Christian Living Good God, Bad World. Why? God's Plan to Eradicate Sin The Ceremonial Feasts Pointed to Christ
Death
Is there more to death than the fact that it is the opposite of life? What are the false doctrines involving the immortality of the soul?
Death: Understanding the Terminology A Biblical Understanding of Death The Resurrection of Lazarus Spiritism Hell and Purgatory An Immediate Afterlife? The Parable of Lazarus