TRUTH FROM REVELATION #4
By Pastor George Lehman
Essentially there are two actions in life –
1. Performance :means: to carry into effect; to do–to execute;
getting things done; to go through some process. Active, effective life.
Excuses : Make a decision as to which you will accept for yourself.
This is where a great number of Christians find themselves!
Do you agree that God has great plans and a future for each one of us?
So, when the word seems a bit harsh or hard or direct and cuts like a two-edged sword, its only purpose is for you to become more like Jesus.
God is not trying to complicate out lives, but to improve it!
That is why I believe we need to understand and seriously look at God’s plan in Revelation, because it concerns you and I personally.
We all have a limited time and will do well to heed God’s instructions.
God is very serious about your way of life. I cannot over emphasize the absolute importance of this particular book of Revelation.
Revelation 1:3 – “Blessed is the one who reads aloud the words of this prophecy, and blessed are those who hear it and take to heart what is written in it, because the time is near.
(Not only hear it but to put into practice)
Every point highlighted to the 7 churches by God acts as a:
WARNING or an Encouragement – Jesus Did Not water down this message to us.
It all depends on which side of the line of obedience you find yourself.
Let us have a close look at another two of the 7 churches:
Revelation 3 :1-6 – “To the angel[a] of the church in Sardis write:
These are the words of him who holds the seven spirits of God and the seven stars. I know your deeds; you have a reputation of being alive, but you are dead. 2 Wake up! Strengthen what remains and is about to die, for I have found your deeds unfinished in the sight of my God. 3 Remember, therefore, what you have received and heard; hold it fast, and repent. But if you do not wake up, I will come like a thief, and you will not know at what time I will come to you. (It will be too late)
4 Yet you have a few people in Sardis who have not soiled their clothes. They will walk with me, dressed in white, for they are worthy. 5 The one who is victorious will, like them, be dressed in white. I will never blot out the name of that person from the book of life but will acknowledge that name before my Father and his angels. 6 Whoever has ears, let them hear what the Spirit says to the churches.
Church of Sardis
Let me first say this: “This was a church affected by complacency” (tevredenheid). When growth stops – decay begins.
Complacency – Means:
Excessive satisfaction -Thinking you’re okay.
Contentment – Happy to be living in compromise.
Indifference – Couldn’t care less.
Never confuse movement with action.
This was a dead church – moving but going nowhere.
Notice Rev 3:1. “I know your deeds; you have a reputation of being alive, but you are dead.” (Jesus keeps a record.)
They keep up a good appearance, but they are powerless.
Matthew 23:28 – Just so, you also outwardly seem to people to be just and upright but inside you are full of (pretense*) and sin. (Pretense* =To make something that is not the case; to appear true. The heart has no secret that your conduct does not reveal.)
It’s very interesting to know the Sardis church did less in spreading the Gospel in 200 years, than the next church we will be discussing, Philadelphia did, in less than 20 years.
Rev 3: 2-3
As that great Africans saying goes: Al skrik jy, skrik net wakker.
Keep awake – Jesus says
Luke 21:36 (Amp) – Keep awake then and watch at all times (be discreet [wary, take all things into account], attentive and ready) praying that you may have the full strength and ability and be accounted worthy to escape all these things (taken together) that will take place and to stand in the presence of the Son of Man.
Rev 3:2-3 is for one purpose – His unexpected coming!!
1 Thessalonians 5: 4-6 (LB) – “But, dear brothers, you are not in the dark about these things, and you won’t be surprised as by a thief when that day of the Lord comes. 5 For you are all children of the light and of the day, and do not belong to darkness and night. 6 So be on your guard, not asleep like the others. Watch for his return and stay sober.
Revelation 16:15 – Behold, I am going to come like a thief! Blessed is he who stays awake (alert) and who guards his clothes, so that he may not be naked and (have the shame of being seen exposed).
Don’t let stupidity cause you to miss eternity.
Rev 3: 4-5
What is the white clothes?
Revelation 19:8 – “She has been permitted to dress in fine (radiant) linen, dazzling and white—for the fine linen is (signifies, represents) the righteousness (the upright, just, and godly living, deeds, and conduct, and right standing with God) of the saints (God’s holy people). this explains – our heavenly wardrobe.
What we wear; the fine linen: Righteous, upright, just, godly living, deeds and conduct, right standing with God.
Book of Life
Luke 10:20 – Jesus said: “Don’t rejoice that the devil is subject to you, but rather that your names are written in the Lamb’s Book of Life.
Revelation 20:15 – And if anyone’s (name) was not found recorded in the Book of Life, he was hurdled into the lake of fire.
(Nobody sends you to hell – you just choose not to go to heaven – Rick Warren.)
Again the question is not what you hear, but are you listening and obey!.
The next of the 7 churches:
Revelation 3:7-13 – To the Church in Philadelphia
7 “To the angel of the church in Philadelphia write:
These are the words of him who is holy and true, who holds the key of David. What he opens no one can shut, and what he shuts no one can open. 8 I know your deeds. See, I have placed before you an open door that no one can shut. I know that you have little strength, yet you have kept my word and have not denied my name. 9 I will make those who are of the synagogue of Satan, who claim to be Jews though they are not, but are liars—I will make them come and fall down at your feet and acknowledge that I have loved you. 10 Since you have kept my command to endure patiently, I will also keep you from the hour of trial that is going to come on the whole world to test the inhabitants of the earth.
11 I am coming soon. Hold on to what you have, so that no one will take your crown. 12 The one who is victorious I will make a pillar in the temple of my God. Never again will they leave it. I will write on them the name of my God and the name of the city of my God, the new Jerusalem, which is coming down out of heaven from my God; and I will also write on them my new name. 13 Whoever has ears, let them hear what the Spirit says to the churches.
The word: Philadelphia (brotherly love / kindness).
This was an Evangelistic church.
Any church who has an outreach heart for the lost will see God’s favour on them.
Rev 3:7-8 – the door for you to walk effectively and to successfully fulfill your calling, is wide open.
NB!!! Only you can shut yourself out.
Matthew 16:19 – I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven and whatever you loose on earth will be lost in heaven.
Keys open or lock doors.
We, God’s dedicated, radically saved, full of passion, alive, enthusiastic King’s kids, are the catalyst to open doors for the lost.
Rev 3:9 – be faithful children of God, because of your upright life – your commitment & faithfulness.
God will bring many who think they are saved into a real living relationship with Jesus through your living life example.
Rev 3:10-11 – They are to call to mind what they heard.
2 Timothy 1:14 – Guard and keep (with the greatest of care) the precious and excellently adapted (truth) which has been entrusted (to you) by the help of the Holy Spirit who makes His home in us.
Revelation 3:3 – Remember, therefore, what you have received and heard; hold it fast, and repent. But if you do not wake up, I will come like a thief, and you will not know at what time I will come to you.
What are you doing about the Word you hear – Sunday after Sunday?
Like God’s call to these 7 churches, He calls us here tonight to a life of unconditional commitment – to be a pillar – steadfast.
Be on fire/hot/ Fueled and Aflame?
Make sure Jesus is REALLY your first love!
And to guard your life in Him
I am coming soon – are you ready?
Jude 1:21 – Guard and keep yourselves in the love of God; expect and patiently wait for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ (the Messiah) (which will bring you) unto life eternal.
Let us finish STRONG!