Revelation 2:12-17 – The Church in Pergamos
Pergamos was one of the most prominent cites in Asia, located in the western part of Asia Minor. It was forty five miles north of Smyrna and twenty miles from the Mediterranean sea. It was built on a huge rock formation outcropping a natural fortress.
It was a wealthy city with many temples devoted to idols. As we shall see, it was a church of compromise. The glory of the ancient city has vanished. A small city village named Bergama is located behind the ruins of the old city. A nominal Christian testimony has continued to modern times.
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Revelation 2:12-17 – The Church in Pergamos
“And to the angel of the church in Pergamos write; These things saith He which hath the sharp sword with two edges; I know thy works, and where thou dwellest, even where Satan’s seat is: and thou holdest fast My name, and hast not denied My faith, even in those days wherein Antipas was My faithful martyr, who was slain among you, where Satan dwelleth. But I have a few things against thee, because thou hast there them that hold the doctrine of Balaam, who taught Balak to cast a stumblingblock before the children of Israel, to eat things sacrificed unto idols, and to commit fornication. So hast thou also them that hold the doctrine of the Nicolaitanes, which thing I hate. Repent; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will fight against them with the sword of My mouth. He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the hidden manna, and will give him a white stone, and in the stone a new name written, which no man knoweth saving he that receiveth it.”
Jesus’ Description of Himself
“And to the angel of the church in Pergamos write; These things saith He which hath the sharp sword with two edges” (Revelation 2:12). It was taken from the description of Christ in chapter one, “out of His mouth went a sharp twoedged sword” (Revelation 1:16). Here is added the use of “the sharp sword.” The two edged one, the sharp one. It was a long spear like sword apparently referring to the double edged character of the Word of God (Hebrews 4:12).
There are many applications to its twoedged nature. It separates between those who are vessels of grace and condemnation. The message of salvation cuts the chains of sin and condemnation which binds helpless sinners. It’s an instrument of both salvation and death. Salvation to those who accept the message of grace and a means of condemnation to those who reject the grace that’s offered them. It distinguishes between those who are true followers of Christ and those who reject the gospel.
The Romans expressed the authority of its governors in terms of “the right of the sword.” Thus, an indirect play on words as a reminder it is Jesus Who has the twoedged sword and Who has the ultimate authority in their life and situation. Submission must be first and foremost to Him and not any human government. Our allegiance must be to Jesus above and beyond the authority of man. We submit to the powers that be only to a point (Romans 13:1-5). When their authority overreaches the authority of God “We ought to obey God rather than men” (Acts 5:29).
This also speaks of the authority to execute corrective judgment. As civil authorities have the power to exact judgment on evil doers and those who break the law Jesus all the more. The law is there to keep us in certain boundaries for the good of all. When we break the law we must face the consequences and penalties thereof. Jesus is the one Who has the sharp twoedged sword proceeding out of His mouth to bring corrective discipline to His church when needed. As a master surgeon He is able to take His scalpel and cut away all that is bringing us harm in order to heal the wounds that exist in us and His church.
Jeremiah 30:14 – “I have wounded thee with the wound of an enemy, with the chastisement of a cruel one, for the multitude of thine iniquity; because thy sins were increased.”
Hebrews 4:12-13 – “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. Neither is there any creature that is not manifest in His sight: but all things are naked and opened unto the eyes of Him with whom we have to do – must give an account.”
Revelation 2:16 – “Repent; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will fight against them with the sword of My mouth.”
John 17:17 – “Sanctify them through Thy truth: Thy Word is truth.”
Four Things Jesus Knows About the Church in Pergamos
“I know thy works, and where thou dwellest, even where Satan’s seat is: and thou holdest fast My name, and hast not denied My faith, even in those days wherein Antipas was My faithful martyr, who was slain among you, where Satan dwelleth” (Revelation 2:13).
- Their works. “I know thy works” (Revelation 2:13a). It’s interesting that this statement of our Lord is mentioned to each of the seven churches. He knows our work and labor for Him particularly when we’re doing so under adversity and opposition. Your Labor for Him does not escape His notice. He will not overlook what you’re doing for Him.
Hebrews 6:10 – “For God is not unrighteous to forget your work and labour of love, which ye have shewed toward His name, in that ye have ministered to the saints, and do minister.”
1 Corinthians 15:58 – “Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.”
Since this is in the context of His corrective judgment we must take into account our works in the light of The Judgment Seat of Christ. At this judgment we will be judged according to our works. This has to do with the reward of the believer. We are saved by grace and not works but reward, on the other hand, is earned. All our works will pass through the fire and what isn’t burned up will be rewarded accordingly (1 Corinthians 3:9-15). Let’s allow Him to deal with us now rather than then.
2 Corinthians 5:10-11 – “For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad. Knowing therefore the terror of the Lord, we persuade men.”
1 John 2:28 – “And now, little children, abide in Him; that, when He shall appear, we may have confidence, and not be ashamed before Him at His coming.”
- The circumstance under which they labored. “I know… where thou dwellest, even where Satan’s seat is… where Satan dwelleth” (Revelation 2:13b and e). There’s a number of possible meanings and things this referred to. To say the least, it wasn’t a good situation under which they lived.
- The Temple of Esculapius or Asklepios. A pagan god whose idol was in the form of a sperpent. Israel also fell prey to the same in a since. The bronze serpent that Moses errected as a means of salvation which Jesus was a type of (Numbers 21:9 and John 3:14-16) Israel later worshiped. Hezekiah later destroyed (2 Kings 18:4).
- The Altar od Zeus. This is now seen in eastern Berlin. This refers to the evil influence Satan had there. It refers to the satanic power and influence of the city. Any and all types of idol worship is demonic at its very core.
1 John 5:21 – “Little children, keep yourselves from idols. Amen.”
Acts 17:30 – “And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent.”
1 Thessalonians 1:9 – “For they themselves shew of us what manner of entering in we had unto you, and how ye turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God.”
- The seat of the Roman government.
- The undefined allusion to Satan’s power. Satan had a strong foot hold in this city. They were living in the seat of demonic activity, a stronghold of Satan himself. How many areas, cities, states, countries, and the world does Satan have a strong seat in today? In fact, Satan is called “god of the world” in 2 Corinthians 4:4, “prince of this world” in John 14:30 and “prince of the power of the air” in Ephesians 2:2. In 1 John 5:19, the Apostle John said, “We know that we are of God, and that the whole world lies in the grip of the evil one.”
We must “first bind the strong man” (Mark 3:27) if we are going plunder his house – this world over which he rules. This is particularly true in seeing people “rescued from the domain of darkness and transferred to the kingdom of His beloved Son” (Colossians 1:13). This is what was taking place in Mark 3:14-15, “He appointed twelve, so that they would be with Him and that He could send them out to preach, and to have authority to cast out the demons,” which Jesus Himself had been doing.
Ephesians 6:12-13 – “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.”
2 Corinthians 10:3-5 – “For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh: For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds; Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God.”
Matthew 16:18-19 – “Upon this rock I will build My church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.”
- They held fast His name. “I know… thou holdest fast My name” (Revelation 2:13c). “My Name” an embodiment of personal faith and loyalty to Jesus and His name. It refers to faith in Him and His name. A new wife takes on the name of the husband and counts it an honor and privilege and badge of honor to have his name. So it is and should be for every child of God. They were not ashamed of His name but carried His name with pride.
They boldly proclaimed His name in the midst of a world in which Satan ruled. His name is to be professed among all who have called upon Him for salvation. We hold His name dear to ourselves. We confessed His name at the salvation of our souls but it doesn’t end there. Our confession and profession of Him and His name isn’t to be a one-time thing. It’s something that should and must be continual. We hold His name out for all to behold and to receive as we have.
Romans 1:16 – “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.”
Matthew 10:32-33 – “Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven. But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven.”
Philippians 2:9-11 – “Wherefore God also hath highly exalted Him, and given Him a name which is above every name: That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”
Hebrews 3:6 and 14 – “But Christ as a son over His own house; Whose house are we, if we hold fast the confidence and the rejoicing of the hope firm unto the end. For we are made partakers of Christ, if we hold the beginning of our confidence steadfast unto the end.”
Philippians 2:16 – “Holding forth the Word of life; that I may rejoice in the day of Christ, that I have not run in vain, neither laboured in vain.”
- They had not denied His faith. “And hast not denied My faith, even in those days wherein Antipas was My faithful martyr, who was slain among you, where Satan dwelleth” (Revelation 2:13d). This refers to the body of fundamental truth of the Christians faith. To stand true to the truths and doctrine of scripture even when engulfed by evil all around. They stood strong for sound doctrine and Biblical teaching even where there is falsehood all around. They stood for truth even when there was apostasy in their ranks and faced with the temptation to compromise.
If there was ever needed this kind of steadfastness for the truth it’s needed in our day. We live in a day where truth is being compromised like never before. False doctrine and erroneous teaching abounds in our day like at few other times. Ours is a day where those are needed who will stand for truth and sound doctrines. Pastors need to be about the business of teaching sound doctrine to their people so they will be less likely to be carried away by strange doctrine.
2 Timothy 4:1-3 – “I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at His appearing and His kingdom; Preach the Word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all long suffering and doctrine. For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.”
1 Timothy 4:13 – “Till I come, give attendance to reading, to exhortation, to doctrine.”
Titus 2:1 – “But speak thou the things which become sound doctrine.”
Ephesians 4:14 – “That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive.”
Hebrews 13:9 – “Be not carried about with divers and strange doctrines.”
“And hast not denied My faith, even in those days wherein Antipas was My faithful martyr, who was slain among you, where Satan dwelleth” (Revelation 2:13d). Antipas mean “against all,” a symbol of faithfulness against all that came against him, even to death. He may very well have stood alone and the entire church is commended for it. Would we stand alone even when everyone else is caving in?
That’s exactly what is required in our day if we are going to take a stand for sound doctrine. We very well may have to stand alone against all, all that is coming against us, against all odds, and against a myriad of false and erroneous doctrines. We very well may have to take such a stand one day soon. Will we take such a stand? A martyr is a witness. He wasn’t a martyr because he died but died because he was a martyr.
What Jesus Held Against Them
“But I have a few things against thee, because thou hast there them that hold the doctrine of Balaam, who taught Balak to cast a stumblingblock before the children of Israel, to eat things sacrificed unto idols, and to commit fornication. So hast thou also them that hold the doctrine of the Nicolaitanes, which thing I hate” (Revelation 2:14-15).
- Those who hold the doctrine of Balaam (Numbers 22-25). Balak, King of Moab, saw all that Israel did to the Amorites and “Sent messengers to Balaam the son of Beor at Pethor, saying: Look, a people has come from Egypt. See, they cover the face of the earth, and are settling next to me! Therefore please come at once, curse this people for me, for they are too mighty for me. Perhaps I shall be able to defeat them and drive them out of the land, for I know that he whom you bless is blessed, and he whom you curse is cursed. So the elders of Moab and the elders of Midian departed with the diviner’s fee” (Numbers 22:5-7).
Balaam sought the Lord about what He would have him do and God said, “You shall not go with them; you shall not curse the people, for they are blessed” (Numbers 22:12). He told the messengers to return to Balak and Balak sent messengers again who were more honorable and more money (silver and gold, etc.) This time God allowed Balaam to go with them, but the Lord was not pleased that Balaam persisted.
Beware! There are times the Lord will let us have our way if we persist, to our dismay. Once God has clearly told us no, we must not persist against His will. If we persist God will often give us what we want but we will be walking contrary to Him and He will set His face against us. Balaam persisted because of his greed. His desire was not for money alone but for the power, honor, and prestige that would be bestowed upon him.
We must guard ourselves against wrong motives. If we desire to proceed, even in doing the right thing, because of a desire for money, power, honor, and prestige our motives are contrary to God. That is what Peter was dealing with when he said, “Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind” (1 Peter 5:2).
If we will do the right thing, speaking and doing all that God has appointed us to, with only the desire to serve God and His people, God will take care of us. Let God’s people also beware. When God’s man is serving with the proper motive and working diligently to give us His Word, it is His people’s responsibility to make sure they are well taken care of. “The worker is worthy of his support” (Matthew 10:10). And again, “The elders who rule well are to be considered worthy of double honor, especially those who work hard at preaching and teaching. For the Scripture says, You shall not muzzle the ox while he is threshing, and The laborer is worthy of his wages” (1 Timothy 5:17-18). Read also Romans 15:26-28; 1 Corinthians 9:7-11 and Galatians 6:6.
On his way, Balaam was riding his donkey and the Angel of the Lord stood in his way with his sword drawn. God allowed his donkey to see the Angel of the Lord there, therefore the donkey turned aside into a field. Balaam became angry and struck the donkey. Then they came to a narrow place between two walls and seeing the Angel again with the sword, the donkey pressed into the wall and crushed Balaam’s foot and he struck the donkey again. They went a little further where there was an even narrower place, the donkey saw the angel again, the donkey laid down under Balaam and his anger was aroused and struck the donkey the third time. At this point, God opened the donkey’s mouth and it spoke saying,
“What have I done to you, that you have struck me these three times? And Balaam said to the donkey, Because you have abused me. I wish there were a sword in my hand, for now I would kill you! So the donkey said to Balaam, Am I not your donkey on which you have ridden, ever since I became yours, to this day? Was I ever disposed to do this to you? And he said, No. Then the Lord opened Balaam’s eyes, and he saw the Angel of the Lord standing in the way with His drawn sword in His hand; and he bowed his head and fell flat on his face. And the Angel of the Lord said to him, Why have you struck your donkey these three times? Behold, I have come out to stand against you, because your way is perverse before (contrary to) Me. The donkey saw Me and turned aside from Me these three times. If she had not turned aside from Me, surely I would also have killed you by now, and let her live. And Balaam said to the Angel of the Lord, I have sinned, for I did not know You stood in the way against me. Now therefore, if it displeases You, I will turn back. Then the Angel of the Lord said to Balaam, Go with the men, but only the word that I speak to you, that you shall speak. So Balaam went with the princes of Balak” (Numbers 22:28-35).
Balak took Balaam to a place where he could see Israel so he would curse them, but God put a blessing in Balaam’s mouth instead. Balak kept taking him to other places where he could see Israel, insisting he curse them. Each time he did this, Balaam would go to the Lord asking if he should curse Israel and every time God would again cause him to pronounce a blessing on Israel. Balak became increasingly angry telling him, Do you not realize that I can promote you to honor. Balaam responded, “Behold, I have received a command to bless; He has blessed, and I cannot reverse it. Did I not tell you, saying, All that the Lord speaks, that I must do” (Numbers 23:20 and 26)?
Ultimately, though God would not let him curse Israel, he told Balak how Israel could be cursed and Balak got the women of Moab to entice the men of Israel to commit harlotry with them and got them to worship and sacrifice to their gods and those who participated were killed. “Then the Lord spoke to Moses, saying: Harass the Midianites, and attack them; for they harassed you with their schemes by which they seduced you” (Numbers 25:16).
“Israel abode in Shittim, and the people began to commit whoredom with the daughters of Moab. And they called the people unto the sacrifices of their gods: and the people did eat, and bowed down to their gods. And Israel joined himself unto Baalpeor: and the anger of the Lord was kindled against Israel. And the Lord said unto Moses, Take all the heads of the people, and hang them up before the Lord against the sun, that the fierce anger of the Lord may be turned away from Israel. And Moses said unto the judges of Israel, Slay ye every one his men that were joined unto Baalpeor” (Numbers 25:1-5).
Historically this deals with the subversion of Christianity under Constantine (Roman emperor from 306 to 337) and which continued for next few centuries (A.D. 313-600). Diocletian, who was the prior emperor, demanded by royal edict, in 303 A.D., that every copy of the Bible be destroyed with fire. He destroyed so many Bibles and killed so many Christians that when they were silent for a time he was convinced he had put an end to both Christianity and the Bible. So much so that he caused a medal to be struck with the inscription, “The Christian religion is destroyed and the worship of the gods restored.”
It was only a few years later when Constantine rose to the throne who declared Christianity a state religion. This sounds great! An end to persecution, we would think, is always a good thing. But, in fact, it often brought compromise. Constantine saw a symbol of a cross above Rome with the inscription, “In this sign conquer.” The church and Christianity was now favored by the government. All of the sudden it was popular to be a Christian. They were now allowed to worship according to the dictates of one’s conscience. Sounds great doesn’t it?
However, conscience soon became blurred. It became increasingly more and more difficult to maintain a distinction between the church and the world. The three years to follow are a record of corruption and compromise. It became increasingly worse. There was a departure from sound Biblical doctrine wherein Christian theology was intermingled with pagan philosophy. (From this day until the Roman Catholic Church has continued to adopt much of the practices established during this time.) Including a more recent trend over the last few decades now has increasingly mingled its beliefs and practices with that of the world. It has to slowly creep in, like the proverbial frog in hot water, and the church has failed to discern what has happened. The church has adopted humanism, worldly psychology, self-help practices, and the list goes on.
The Remnant – God always has a remnant. There was the first Council of Nicaea, (325 AD), the first ecumenical council of the Christian church, meeting in ancient Nicaea (now İznik, Turkey), in hopes a general council of the church would solve the problem created in the Eastern church by Arianism, a heresy first proposed by Arius of Alexandria that affirmed that Christ is not divine but a created being. At this counsel a stand was taken against heresy and the doctrine of the Trinity was secured. The council condemned Arius and incorporated the word homoousios (“of one substance”) into a creed to signify the absolute equality of the Son with the Father. Thank God He always has a remnant to maintain doctrinal purity in both belief and practice. Will you be part of this remnant in our day?
- The Nicolaitans. “So hast thou also them that hold the doctrine of the Nicolaitanes, which thing I hate” (Revelation 2:15). What Ephesus had resisted had become a doctrine and practice in Pergamos. The tendency of the church over the years has been, what one generation resists the following one succumbs to.
Nicolaitans (Nikolaites) means conquerors of the people or the clergy over the laity. They thought there should be two classes of people in the church, the clergy and the laity. This was a perversion of truth. Jesus is said to hate this (Galatians 1:8-9). God help those who pervert His truth. He loathes the perversion of truth. There’s always those who pervert truths the Holy Spirit brings into the church. One takes a truth to one extreme while another takes it to another extreme all the time missing what the Spirit of God was saying.
There is the five-fold ministry (Ephesians 4:11) and the people are to submit those who have spiritual authority over them (Hebrews 13:17). However, to put it in proper balance, those called of God into the ministry were not to lord it over them. “Neither as being lords over God’s heritage, but being examples to the flock” (1 Peter 5:3). We’re to follow the example of those in spiritual leadership but not blindly. Leaders are to exhort, challenge, encourage those under their care and be an example of Christ likeness (1 Corinthians 11:1).
The Catholic church has at times in church history abused their authority over the people as if they were spiritually superior. Among many things, they taught that the common person could not understand the Word of God and therefore needed the priests to interpret it for them. This is far from the truth. Each born-again believer is spiritually enlightened by the Holy Spirit Who guides them into all truth (1 Corinthians 2:12-14, John 16:13-14).
We must all study God’s Word for ourselves and let the Holy Spirit teach us (1 John 2:20 and 27). That doesn’t mean we shouldn’t be taught. The Lord places good Bible teachers in the body of Christ for a reason (Ephesians 4:11 and Romans 12:6-8). However, we must all study the Bible on our own and let the Holy Spirit teach us.
There was a time in the twentieth century church that there was a movement called the shepherding movement. During this time those of the five-fold ministry lorded themselves over the people they were pastoring. They went to such extremes that their people had to go to them concerning every decision they made. They would then pray and tell them what they should do.
This type of shepherding is a false and erroneous teaching and must be rejected by the church. Each child of God is to be led by the Holy Spirit themselves (Romans 8:14). This doesn’t mean when we’re facing difficult decisions we shouldn’t go to our pastor for guidance. Part of a Pastor’s job is to give their people direction from the Word of God (Exodus 18:16 and Romans 15:14). The person then makes the best decision they themselves can under the guidance of the Holy Spirit (Proverbs 3:5-6 and James 1:5-8).
The doctrine of the Nicolaitans must be resisted on every front. Balance is imperative! What Ephesus had resisted Pergamos had succumbed to.
“Repent; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will fight against them with the sword of My mouth” (Revelation 2:16). What a stern warning! What He does will be swift. Woe to those who find themselves fighting in opposition to Christ. He is a loving savior but He is also stern in His corrective discipline to those who are in error. He will fight against them “with the sword of My mouth.”
I fear that much of the church in our day has strayed terribly. We no longer preach the truth of God’s Word without compromise and we no longer holding fast His name and doctrinal purity. The church must repent and return to the first things again or else we will find our Lord fighting against us with the sword of His mouth. What a horrifying thing to find Jesus fighting against us. However, if we repent, we’ll find the same sword that wounds and corrects us will likewise heal us. He is the great physician Who takes out His scaple to both wound and heal us.
Hebrews 12:4-6 – “You have not yet resisted unto blood, striving against sin. And you have forgotten the exhortation which speaketh unto you as unto children, My son, despise not thou the chastening of the Lord, nor faint when thou art rebuked of him: For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth.”
Psalm 107:20 – “He sent His word, and healed them, and delivered them from their destructions.”
“He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the hidden manna, and will give him a white stone, and in the stone a new name written, which no man knoweth saving he that receiveth it” (Revelation 2:17).
- The call to attentiveness. “He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches” (Revelation 2:17a). This is repeated to each of the seven churches. Therefore, we must re-emphasize it where the Holy Spirit does. It’s incumbent on us to listen up and give heed to what the Holy Spirit is saying to the churches. This was true of this church, all the seven churches, the church throughout the ages, and churches today. We must have an attentive ear and also obey all the Holy Spirit says.
Hebrews 3:7-8 – “Wherefore, as the Holy Ghost saith, To day if ye will hear His voice, Harden not your hearts.”
Matthew 25:29 – “For unto every one that hath shall be given, and he shall have abundance: but from him that hath not shall be taken away even that which he hath.”
John 7:17 – “If any man will do His will, he shall know of the doctrine, whether it be of God, or whether I speak of Myself.”
- To the overcomers. “To him that overcometh” (Revelation 2:17b). This also is repeated to each of the seven churches. To all the seven churches is repeated, “I know they works, he that hath an ear to hear, and to him that overcomes. All truly born-again believers are overcomers. That’s our destiny.
No matter what you may be going through or what you’re facing God’s plan for you is overcoming victory. Keep trusting and obeying and don’t ever quit or give up. The devil knows that the only way he can win is by getting you to give up. If you refuse to quit you will overcome. NEVER, NEVER, NEVER QUIT!
2 Corinthians 2:14 – “Now thanks be unto God, which always causeth us to triumph in Christ, and maketh manifest the savour of his knowledge by us in every place.”
1 John 4:4 – “Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is He that is in you, than he that is in the world.”
1 John 5:4-5 – “For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith. Who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God?”
Romans 8:37 – “Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him that loved us.”
- Eat of the hidden manna. “I give to eat of the hidden manna” (Revelation 2:17c). Healthy food as apposed to junk food. That which nourishes. Those who are malnourished on falsehoods need only to repent of falsehoods to be given proteins of good food. This gives the allusion of the manna in the wilderness which fed the children of Israel and sustained them. Jesus give us true manna that will sustain us in all wilderness experiences of life.
It’s interesting that the manna in the wilderness was only good for the day in which it was given. If they tried to keep it for the next day it would spoil. Even so, feeding on Christ and His Word is sufficient for each day. We must feed on the Master and His Word daily. What we feast on one day does not carry over to the next.
The Word of God gives us nourishment that the world knows not of. Even beyond that Jesus is the true bread that comes down from heaven that those who trust in Him will be satisfied therewith. An intimate relationship with our Lord brings nourishment and sustenance to the soul and spirit to all who trust in and commune with Him.
John 6:31-35 – “Our fathers did eat manna in the desert; as it is written, He gave them bread from heaven to eat. Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Moses gave you not that bread from heaven; but My Father giveth you the true bread from heaven. For the bread of God is He which cometh down from heaven, and giveth life unto the world. Then said they unto Him, Lord, evermore give us this bread. And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to Me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on Me shall never thirst.”
John 3:34 – “Jesus saith unto them, My meat is to do the will of Him that sent Me, and to finish His work.”
Job 23:12 – “Neither have I gone back from the commandment of His lips; I have esteemed the words of His mouth more than my necessary food.”
Psalms 119:103 – “How sweet are Thy words unto my taste! yea, sweeter than honey to my mouth!”
Jeremiah 15:16 – “Thy words were found, and I did eat them; and Thy Word was unto me the joy and rejoicing of mine heart: for I am called by thy name, O Lord God of hosts.”
Matthew 4:4 – “But He answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.”
Luke 10:38-42 – “Now as they were traveling along, He entered a village; and a woman named Martha welcomed Him into her home. And she had a sister called Mary, who was also seated at the Lord’s feet, and was listening to His Word. But Martha was distracted with all her preparations; and she came up to Him and said, ‘Lord, do You not care that my sister has left me to do the serving alone? Then tell her to help me.’ But the Lord answered and said to her, ‘Martha, Martha, you are worried and distracted by many things; but only one thing is necessary; for Mary has chosen the good part, which shall not be taken away from her.'”
Let’s spend time daily seated at the Master’s feet listening to His Word, dining with Him. He is even now inviting you to come and dine with Him. This is hidden manna that the world knows not of. If you don’t know Him you can even now open the door of your heart and let Him come in and begin to feast on this hidden manna. Perhaps you have accepted Him as Savoir and Lord but, as Martha, you’ve become distracted with business and shut Him out. You too can open the door and let Him back in and dine with Him.
Revelation 3:20 – “Behold, 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.”
- A white stone with a new name. I “will give him a white stone, and in the stone a new name written, which no man knoweth saving he that receiveth it” (Revelation 2:17d). This is possibly a brilliant diamond. In the courts of law in those days a white stone was given as a symbol of a person being acquitted and a black one of condemnation. For those being initiated into an fraternity a white stone would be given to those who were approved and accepted. A black stone would be tossed into the ballot box for those who were rejected. Hence, the term “black balled.”
All who trust Christ as Lord and Savoir are accepted, approved, acquitted, favored by Christ and for His sake. This assurance is give especially to those who have been rejected. Praise the Lord! For Jesus’ sake we have been acquitted of all wrong doing, accepted, and favored of Him. That’s the good news for all those who have placed their trust in Jesus and His finished work on Calvary’s cross. There is no condemnation but complete forgiveness and acceptance.
Romans 3:25-26 – “Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in His blood, to declare His righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God; To declare, I say, at this time Hs righteousness: that He might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus.”
Romans 5:1-2 – “Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ: By Whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.”
Romans 5:9-11 – “Much more then, being now justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him. For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of His Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by His life. And not only so, but we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by Whom we have now received the reconciliation.”
Romans 8:1-3 – “There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death. For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh.”
Ephesians 1:4-6 – “According as He hath chosen us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love: Having predestined us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will, To the praise of the glory of His grace, wherein He hath made us accepted in the beloved.”
Glory be to God! We’ve been justified, acquitted, and accepted in Christ Jesus our Lord!
A new name. This could be the unspoken name of Jehovah, the name of adoption, taking the family name, the bride taking the name of the groom, or the new name given at conversion. People were often give a new name as a result of their conversion experience. Abram’s name was changed to Abraham, Jacob’s name was changed to Israel, Cephas to Peter, and Saul was changed to Paul, etc.. In whichever case, when this happened, they were excited and proud of their new name.
Praise the Lord! We’ve been give a new name. There’s a new name written down in glory and it’s mine. We’ve been given the family name by adoption, taken on the name of our groom to Whom we have been betrothed, and have been given a new name that is unique to us alone. Glory be to God!