“Write the things which thou hast seen, and the things which are, and the things which shall be hereafter;” Revelation 1:19
I glanced at my cousin. He glanced at me. We were caught and we knew it. High school government class ran high speed through the shortened summer school session. One requirement included attending two city council meetings and writing an essay on them. We decided each of us would attend one and share our notes. It wasn’t really cheating was it? I would write my essay from my notes and he would write his essay from my notes. The problem arose when his essay mirrored mine. Now we had to stand before the teacher and confess our sin. That’s as close as I ever came to being called to the principal’s office. I never wanted to experience the fear or shame again.
In chapters two and three of Revelation John takes us to the Principal’s office to hear Jesus speaking to the seven churches. In this visit we learn more about the Principal than the churches. We learn how He sees his church then and now.
He is –
“I am Alpha and Omega,
the first and the last…
He holds –
“the seven stars in his right hand,
who walketh in the midst of the seven golden candlesticks;”
Revelation 2: 1
Jesus’s word is the first word and the last. There is no arguing with this Principal. He has all authority as He holds the seven stars – his messengers to the church – in his right hand. When he says the church has left its first love and needs to repent, he has the authority to back it up.
For He is –
“One Lord … which is the head, even Christ …
And he is the head of the body, the church:
who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead;
that in all things he might have the preeminence.”
(Ephesians 4:5,15; Colossians 1:18)
He delegated authority to his servants for the building up of the church but each serve under His authority. He is ever among his church never forsaking her to the whims of others. He walks among us.
He is here today.
“For where two or three are gathered together in my name,
there am I in the midst of them.”
Each of the seven letters to the churches includes the phrase, “I know thy works”. Because Jesus’s death and resurrection give him preeminence over all things he has the authority to judge our works, commend our works, correct our works, and call us to repentance or reward. In all he gives opportunity for mercy.
He continues to plead today –
“ He that hath an ear, let him hear,
what the Spirit says unto the churches.”
(Revelation 2:7,11,17,29; 3:6,13,22)
To the faithful church enduring persecution, Jesus is –
“the first and the last, which was dead, and is alive …” Rev. 2:8
“ These things have I spoken unto you
that in me ye might have peace.
In the world ye shall have tribulation:
but be of good cheer;
I have overcome the world …
But now is Christ risen from the dead,
and become the firstfruits of them that slept …
Death is swallowed up in victory…
thanks be to God,
which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.”
(John 16:33; 1 Corinthians 15:20,54,57)
Jesus’s victory over death is the persecuted church’s victory. A crown of life awaits those tested who aced the test with their faithfulness. May we remember to pray for the persecuted church of today. It could be us.
As we eavesdrop on Jesus’s meeting with the church at Pergamos, he reminds us he is the one –
“which hath the sharp sword with two edges;”
His sword is the word of his mouth.
“out of his mouth went a sharp twoedged sword …
or else I will come unto thee quickly,
and will fight against them with the sword of my mouth.”
“For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper
than any twoedged sword,
piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit,
and of the joints and marrow,
and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.”
Christ’s words divide between truth and error in his church. No argument stands before him.
“They are of the world:
therefore speak they of the world,
and the world heareth them.
We are of God:
he that knoweth God heareth us;
he that is not of God
heareth not us.
Hereby know we the spirit of truth, and the spirit of error.”
Forsake the spirit of error. Follow truth or be found of –
“the Son of God,
who hath his eyes like unto a flame of fire,
and his feet are like fine brass.”
Jesus Christ is the Son of God.
“a bright cloud overshadowed them:
and behold a voice out of the cloud, which said,
This is my beloved Son,
in whom I am well pleased;
hear ye him.”
Nothing is hidden from him. His judgments are righteous.
“For there is nothing covered,
that shall not be revealed;
neither hid, that shall not be known.”
“I can of mine own self do nothing:
as I hear, I judge:
and my judgment, is just:
because I seek not mine own will,
but the will of the Father which hath sent me.”
He has been tried and found faithful. He came through the refiner’s fire.
“Therefore thus saith the Lord God,
Behold, I lay in Zion for a foundation a stone,
a tried stone, a precious corner stone, a sure foundation:
he that believeth shall not make haste …
And being found in fashion as a man,
he humbled himself,
and became obedient unto death,
even the death of the cross …
But as he which hath called you is holy,
so be ye holy in all manner of conversation.”
(Isaiah 28:16; Philippians 2:8; 1 Peter 1:15)
Not only has the church of Jesus Christ been found teaching false doctrine but adopting it as a lifestyle of immorality. Yet, there are still –
“as many as have not this doctrine,
and which have not known the depths of Satan,
as they speak;
I will put upon you none other burden.
But that which ye have already hold fast till I come.”
As we leave the Principal’s office today let’s keep in mind we have –
- One Lord … even Christ
- He walks among us
- He knows our works whether they be of truth and love or of error
- He is our victory over trials
- His word knows the heart and soul of his church and each member
- Nothing is hidden from his eyes
- He is our tried and true foundation
- If we are found in error – repent
- If we are found in truth – cling to Jesus until he returns
We have one more day to hear what the Spirit has to say to the churches as three more are called into his presence. I hope you will join us.
Does it bring you encouragement or concern to know Christ is walking among his church today?