Persecuted for preaching the gospel, around A.D. 95, John was exiled to Patmos, an island on the Aegean Sea where he received a revelation from an angel of Christ.
Previously, Christ spoke to John through a vision that included seven candlesticks which represent the seven churches in Asia, Ephesus, Smyrna, Pergamos, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia and Laodicea.
The first church mentioned to John was Ephesus, which Jesus described as having become loveless, and He warned the Ephesians they should repent or face God’s wrath. Then, Christ praised the church at Smyrna and encouraged them on the dawn of suffering to come. The third church, Pergamos was also praised for their perseverance, and rebuked for allowing blasphemous teaching within the church and encouraging the doctrine of Balaam to be spread which led believers to unrepented sin including idolatry and fornication. The church at Thyatira, the fourth church was labeled by Jesus as a corrupt fellowship because it allowed the teachings of Jezebel, a woman who promoted sexual immorality and idolatry.
Now, through the pen of His apostle John, Jesus addresses the church at Sardis.
“1 And to the angel of the church in Sardis write, ‘These things says He who has the seven Spirits of God and the seven stars: “I know your works, that you have a name that you are alive, but you are dead.” (Revelation 3:1)
Located inland, about one hundred miles east of Smyrna, Sardis was a prominent city in Asia Minor. Though the fellowship at Sardis was indeed based on the teachings of Jesus, the church had strayed from the narrow path and fallen to sin.
“2 Be watchful, and strengthen the things which remain, that are ready to die, for I have not found your works perfect before God.” (Revelation 3:2)
Jesus warns the disciples at Sardis of their works, which He calls incomplete, and that each one should cherish those things that brings delight to God before they eventually vanish completely.
“3 Remember therefore how you have received and heard; hold fast and repent. Therefore if you will not watch, I will come upon you as a thief, and you will not know what hour I will come upon you.” (Revelation 3:3)
Now, Christ calls on those at Sardis to remember that which is the foundation of Christianity, or to fear the Lord’s return at which time the fallen would be judged according to their ways.
“4 You have a few names even in Sardis who have not defiled their garments; and they shall walk with Me in white, for they are worthy.” (Revelation 3:4)
In spite of the fallen at Sardis, there were disciples who stayed true to their commitment to Christ, resisting and battling the enemy and his sinful ways. These would be among the chosen who would be found worthy of walking with the Lord in Heaven, where their place had been secured by the one and only true God.
“5 He who overcomes shall be clothed in white garments, and I will not blot out his name from the Book of Life; but I will confess his name before My Father and before His angels. 6 “He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.”’ (Revelation 3:5-6)
Lastly, Christ promises the gift of eternal life to those in Sardis who continue their walk along the narrow path that leads to the Father and His angels, where the chosen will rejoice forever. Let’s pray!
We thank you for your blessings in our lives and for your servant John,
We praise you Lord for his wisdom and for his works through this scripture,
We ask you Lord to inspire us to use these verses in our lives
As we grow in you through your revelation delivered by your faithful apostle.
Lord we ask you to strengthen us each day as we endure through battles,
Allow us to praise and love each other through faith in you Jesus,
Shield us from evil through truth, the gospel, salvation and prayer,
Guide us to abide by your word as we spread your gospel to one and all
Becoming examples of faith through our character as we walk the narrow path.
God we pray that you will continue to bless us, to bless our lives and fill us with hope
We ask you Lord to guide our footsteps and lead us to the way everlasting,
Through faith in you Lord we seek salvation and a place with you in heaven
According to your word, your everlasting wisdom and strength.
May your will be done
In our lives, for your life.
We thank you for your love and all you bless us with each day.
This message was written by Daniel St.Pierre