Revelation 2

The real drama of Revelation starts in chapter 4.

Before we get to that, chapters 2 and 3 contain seven short letters, one addressed to each of the seven churches. Think of them as “cover letters” addressed to each church specifically about their unique situation, strengths and weaknesses, and challenges. At the same time, they are universally applicable, so we should learn from their examples.

Today’s reading, Chapter 2, contains a message to Ephesus, Symrna, Pergamum, and Thyatira. Note again the location of these cities.

Over and over in chapters 2 and 3 we see Jesus saying to the churches “I know your works”. He knows everything about them (and us). Some were compromising the teaching, especially in areas of morality. Some were facing intense persecution. Look for these ideas as you read. 

There is also a lot of imagery which can sidetrack us. Try to look past some of it and get the general message for each church.

What is Jesus word to those who are compromising doctrinal or morally? See 5 and 16 for an example.

What do verses 10 and 13 tell us about what the churches of Smyrna and Pergamum were going through?

Many Christians today identify with Ephesus, especially verse 4. What do you think it means, “you left your first love”? What does he command them to do?

Tomorrow: Sardis, Philadelphia and Laodicea.

7 thoughts on “Revelation 2

  1. Jesus has strong words to the churches who were compromising morals. He told them to repent, to turn away from their current situation and return to the deeds they did at the beginning. He gives them a reminder that He is coming quickly, so that they would not waste time in repenting.

    The churches of Smyrna and Pergamum were facing severe persecution from those around them. They were being sought out to be punished or killed for their support of Jesus’ teachings.

    In verse 4, Jesus tells the church to return to their first love. This love He is referring to is the zeal or enthusiasm they had when they first became Christians in their commitment to sharing the gospel with everyone.

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  2. Jesus wants those doing bad doctrinal things, & bad moral things, to repent quickly.

    Smyrna & Pergamum seem to have the devil amongst them, trying & tempting then. In verse 13, Jesus even said that the devil’s throne is with them in Pergamum. Why did he say that, to Pergamum?

    I’m not sure what it meant when Jesus said to the angel of Ephesus, that they had left their 1st love. Above, cmbuscher, had a really nice reason, but, I can’t tell how that’s figured out.

    In chapter 1, when John turned around, he saw Jesus, looking different than he had when he had been on earth, with 7 stars in his hand, representing an angel from each church. And, each letter is addressed to the angel at each church. Jesus has picked a John, to write & record, & be shown Heavenly things. Is this John, after this is all done to Jesus’ satisfaction, then supposed to come back to Earth, & somehow communicate with each angel at each church? Jesus could have easily communicated with each angel, but, which ever John this is, must be writing all this for men & women to also read, & so we all can have this permanent record/account to read & reference for all earthly time.

    Jesus calls himself the Spirit now, but didn’t when on earth, before being risen from the dead and taken back up in Heaven, with God, his father. Why does he now refer to himself as the Spirit? Does this have anything to do with the Holy Ghost/ Spirit?

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    1. I don’t know where Jesus calls Himself the Spirit now, but when John said I was in the Spirit” I take that to mean that he was under the influence of the Holy Spirit, that God miraculously, through the Spirit, gave this revelation to him.

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  3. On this tablet, I just remembered that the words of Jesus are in red. This 1st example is in red, where Jesus is communicating to John, regarding the 1st church. In verse 7, it says: “He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To him who overcomes I will give to eat from the tree of life, which is in the midst of the Paradise of God.” ’

    To the 2nd church, in red also, in verse 11, it says: “He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. He who overcomes shall not be hurt by the second death.” ’
    Revelation 2:11 NKJV

    To the 3rd church, in red, where up a little bit, Jesus starts by saying who he is, then finishes with verse 17, which reads: “He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To him who overcomes I will give some of the hidden manna to eat. And I will give him a white stone, and on the stone a new name written which no one knows except him who receives it. ” ’
    Revelation 2:17 NKJV

    Then to the 4th church, Jesus introduced himself in verse 18: “And to the angel of the church in Thyatira write, ‘These things says the Son of God, who has eyes like a flame of fire, and His feet like fine brass:” Then, to the 4th church, lower, in verse 29, all still in red, finishing up what Jesus was communicating, it reads: “He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.” ’
    Revelation 2:29 NKJV

    In what way is Jesus communicating to John? Is he speaking? I’m confused about which John this is. There is the 4th book of the New Testament, called John. Later, there is John 1, 2, & 3. Was there also an apostle called John? Which John is this?

    Above, in my original post, I asked, in paragraph 4, I asked if John, after all this is completed, supposed to come back to Earth and somehow communicate each letter to each angel at each church, to whom each letter is addressed? Is so, how will John accomplish this?

    I also asked a few questions in the 1st post under Revelations 1. Do you have any wisdom and/or answers for thone questions?

    I’m trying hard to do both classes, & to do each one, it’s taking a lot to do this, with my brain problems. I read your introduction about 4-5 times, & the Bible reading part too, & am having to keep going back, alternating, between them, even more, & have trouble remembering what I just found, went back & read again, to try to remember it, to get it to the post, etc. I wish my brain worked like it used to, before the things were done to my brain. I didn’t used to be like this at all. But, I’m really enjoying these online classes !!! 😁 In the past, I learned this way much better than by listening or hearing anything. I really want to try hard with these online classes, and find out if this way still helps me learn. Thanks so much for doing these classes. It is such a great opportunity.

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    1. As far as I’m aware, the John writing the book of Revelation is the same John who wrote the gospel John, and I, II, and III John. Someone correct me if wrong. He is on the Island of Patmos in his later years and receives a vision where Jesus (as a Spirit; not flesh and blood) tells John things that he is to share with the seven churches. And the big picture is that each of the churches has a good part and a fault. These are being pointed out to each church along with the encouragement to overcome, to persevere, to keep the faith during trials because they will receive a reward in the second death (the first death being our physical death; the second being when Jesus returns to judge all men).

      Jesus says the church at Ephesus has “left your first love,” I wrote in my Bible to look at Mark 12:29-30 which says in v. 30, “‘And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.’ This is the first commandment.”

      So John writes this Revelation down and it is shared as a letter with the seven churches to encourage them to keep the faith during this time of trial and temptation they are going through. Hope this helps!

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