The Church in Sardis
“And to the angel of the church in Sardis write, 1 ‘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. 2 Be watchful, and strengthen the things which remain, that are ready to die, for I have not found your works perfect before God. 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. 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. 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 3:1-6)

I- A personal address to the church
“And to the angel of the church in Sardis write,” (Revelation 3:1)
At the time Lord Jesus spoke these words to the Apostle John, the ancient city of Sardis which was the capital of the kingdom of Lydia, had seen its best days and had started to decline. Yet it was a wealthy city, being situated at the junction of several important roads and trade routes.

History tells us that the first coinage ever to be minted in Asia Minor was minted in Sardis in the days of King Croesus (560-546 B.C.) In other words, Sardis was the place where modern money was born.

Artemis was the main goddess of the city and the temple dedicated to her in Sardis was one of the seven largest Greek temples

II- Character description of Jesus
“These things says He who has the seven Spirits of God and the seven stars:” (Revelation 3:1)
Seven is the number of completeness in the Bible. Seven Spirits refer to the fullness of the Holy Spirit or the seven fold workings of the Holy Spirit that is in Himself and hence He also has the fullness of the Holy Spirit to give to the church. We saw the meaning of this in Chapter 1.

The seven stars represent the seven angels of the seven churches. How do I know that? Please read Revelation 1:20: Lord Jesus Himself said, “The mystery of the seven stars which you see in My right hand, and the seven golden lampstands: The seven stars are the angels of the seven churches,”

Through these letters, when Lord Jesus speaks to the angels of the seven churches, He is not just speaking to that particular individual, but to the entire church through that individual.

III- Recognition/What they were doing right?
You have a few names even in Sardis who have not defiled their garments…(Revelation 3:4)

VI- Shortfalls/What was wrong with them?
“I know your works, that you have a name that you are alive..(Revelation 3:1)
There were no Jezebels in Sardis and no teachings of Balaam or of the Nicolaitans either. But they had something worse – hypocrisy.
The church is Sardis had a name – a reputation – a title. If you looked at the church of Sardis, you would see a lot of activity going on. Meetings, committees, promotion, publicity – something going on all the time. After all you see it had a reputation and a name to live up to. However, the actual spiritual reality was far from the truth. It is impossible for our works to be perfect before God if our motive is to impress men.

They had a good reputation but did not have true spiritual character. A reputation is what people think of you. Character is who you are before God.

but you are dead. (Revelation 3:1)
Notice, Lord Jesus does not encourage the Christians in Sardis to stand strong against persecution or false doctrine – why? Being a dead church they posed no threat to satan’s domain, so it wasn’t worth attacking anyway. Let me give you an example: satan does not attack a person who is fallen on the road drunk – he is already fallen. The Church at Sardis was dead but it was the peace of the dead.

V- Corrective Action/What they needed to do right?
Be watchful, (Revelation 3:2)
This is the first instruction from the Lord Jesus Christ. Every time scripture tells us to be watchful it refers to prayer. It is only through prayer that protection and strength will come.

The city of Sardis had be conquered twice before because of overconfidence and the lack of watchfulness.

and strengthen the things which remain, that are ready to die, (Revelation 3:2)
Though the spiritual condition of the church of Sardis was bad, it wasn’t hopeless. Notice, there were some things which were still remaining that could be strengthened. Lord Jesus had not given up on them and was asking them to act before it was too late. The embers had not died out completely but he had to ‘fan them to a flame’ soon, or they would die out completely. (2 Timothy 1:6)

This is the reason why we must not condemn any church or ministry calling them dead and other names. If Lord Jesus had not given up on the church at Sardis then we have no business condemning any church or ministry. [Lord forgive me and my family if we have]

for I have not found your works perfect before God. (Revelation 3:2)
Notice, they had works but their works were not perfect before God – Why? Firstly, their works did not measure up to God’s standard. Secondly, all our works to be perfect before God must have a God given purpose behind it. Thirdly, if our motive is to only impress people then our works will never be perfect before God. Also, we must complete what we started. Lord Jesus finished the work that His Father had given Him.

Remember therefore how you have received and heard; (Revelation 3:3)
The Lord expects more from those to whom more is given. Here the Lord reminds the messenger to remember what he has received and heard over the ears. To just know the truth and not obey it is to build one’s house on the sand.  There will come a day when it will surely collapse. And this is what happened to the messenger of the Church at Sardis.

Hold fast and repent. (Revelation 3:3)
John the Baptist was the forerunner of Christ who prepared the nation of Israel for the Lord’s first coming by preaching repentance. Now the prophets in the Church have to prepare God’s people for the second coming of Christ by preaching repentance to them. The greatest need in the Church today is the message of repentance.

VI- Challenge
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 3:2-3)
The Church must repent and strive to live holy or else they will be caught unprepared when the Rapture occurs. This is when Lord Jesus comes as a thief in the night. Many will be caught off guard when the Lord comes as a thief in the night. Are you ready?

“He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.” (Revelation 3:6)

VII- Reward/Promise
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. 5 He who overcomes shall be clothed in white garments,(Revelation 3:4-5) 
Even among the dead Christians in Sardis, there is a faithful remnant. In Pergamos and Thyatira, there were a few bad among the good; in Sardis there are a few good among the bad. Sardis had a reputation for being notoriously immoral. Even in a city so wicked there are some who have joined others in sin.

All overcomers are then promised the reward of being clothed in white garments. White garments refer to purity and robes of righteousness. This also means that only overcomers will form the bride of Christ.

Lord Jesus explained the absolute necessity of this being clothed by God with His garments of purity and righteousness in His parable of the wedding feast (Matthew 22:11-14).  Real righteousness is receiving God’s covering instead of trying to cover ourselves.  Adam and Eve tried to cover their own sin (Genesis 3:21) but God provided them with a covering that came from sacrifice (Genesis 3:7).

Lord Jesus also promises that these pure ones will walk with Me.  This picture of close fellowship and friendship is seen in Enoch, who walked with God; and he was not, for God took him (Genesis 5:24).

and I will not blot out his name from the Book of Life;
Overcomers are also promised that their names will not be erased from the lamb’s book of life. This makes it clear that a person’s name can be in the book of life and then be erased from it. The promise given to the overcomer here would meaningless if such a danger did not exist in the first place.

Scripture clearly teaches in Romans 8:13 “For if you live according to the flesh you will die (spiritually)” They will lose their salvation that they once had.

25 Let their dwelling place be desolate;
Let no one live in their tents. (Psalm 69:25)

Here we read of a prophecy concerning Judas Iscariot who betrayed our Lord Jesus that was quoted by Peter in Acts 1:20.

27 Add iniquity to their iniquity,
And let them not come into Your righteousness.
28 Let them be blotted out of the book of the living,
And not be written with the righteous. (Psalm 69:27-28)

Again we see a prophetic reference there to Judas Iscariot’s name being blotted out of the book of life. His name was once in that book and then it was erased.

but I will confess his name before My Father and before His angels. (Revelation 3:4-5)
Here and in Matthew 10:32, the Lord also promises to confess the overcomer’s name before the Father and before His angels. This is a reward promised only to those who confess His name before men and women.

It is a very strange thing that all throughout the world people have a feeling of shame when it comes to confessing Christ before the men and women of this world. It is also very strange that when people follow some philosophers or some cult, they have a feeling not of shame but of boldness. Know this that this shame comes from the devil, satan. We have to fight the battle by the grace and mercy of God to overcome this feeling of shame. Go and tell people how your life has been set free from sin and bondage by Lord Jesus Christ.

The Church in Philadelphia
7 “And to the angel of the church in Philadelphia write, ‘These things says He who is holy, He who is true, “He who has the key of David, He who opens and no one shuts, and shuts and no one opens” 8 “I know your works. See, I have set before you an open door, and no one can shut it; for you have a little strength, have kept My word, and have not denied My name. 9 Indeed I will make those of the synagogue of satan, who say they are Jews and are not, but lie—indeed I will make them come and worship before your feet, and to know that I have loved you. 10 Because you have kept My command to persevere, I also will keep you from the hour of trial which shall come upon the whole world, to test those who dwell on the earth. 11 Behold, I am coming quickly! Hold fast what you have, that no one may take your crown. 12 He who overcomes, I will make him a pillar in the temple of My God, and he shall go out no more. I will write on him the name of My God and the name of the city of My God, the New Jerusalem, which comes down out of heaven from My God. And I will write on him My new name. 13 “He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.” (Revelation 3:7-13)

I- A personal address to the church
“And to the angel of the church in Philadelphia write,” (Revelation 3:7)
Philadelphia was the youngest city of the seven mentioned in the letters. The city was established in 189 BC and was named after two brothers who ruled over the area and who displayed great love for each other. The word “Philadelphia” in the Greek means “brotherly love”

Coins have been found in the area with these two brothers images on them. This area had many excellent vineyards and the abundant wine made drunkenness the major social problem.

Philadelphia was a missionary center for spreading the Greek language and culture to many other areas. Hence, Philadelphia was also known as a gateway city. The city suffered many earthquakes so she never became a great city.

II- Character description of Jesus
‘These things says He who is holy, He who is true, “He who has the key of David, He who opens and no one shuts, and shuts and no one opens”  (Revelation 3:7)
The first mention of the key of the house of David is found in the book of Isaiah, in a description of the duties of Eliakim, the royal chamberlain of King Hezekiah of Judah:

20 And it shall come to pass in that day, that I will call my servant Eliakim the son of Hilkiah:
21 And I will clothe him with thy robe, and strengthen him with thy girdle, and I will commit thy government into his hand: and he shall be a father to the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and to the house of Judah.
22 And the key of the house of David will I lay upon his shoulder; so he shall open, and none shall shut; and he shall shut, and none shall open.
(Isaiah 22:20-22)

The key of the house of David is upon his shoulder? What does that mean?
Let scripture explain scripture. Prophet Isaiah further speaking about Lord Jesus says,

For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. (Isaiah 9:6)

Notice, the key that was laid on the shoulder of Eliakim (v.21-22) is explained in Isaiah 9:6 as a type and symbol of government and authority. Eliakim was awarded this very high honor as ruler of the house of David.

Eliakim alone had the authority to allow or deny audience with the King. Lord Jesus as High Priest opens the door for access to the Father and no one but Jesus can open that door or shut that door.

III- Recognition/What they were doing right?
“I know your works. See, I have set before you an open door, (Revelation 3:8)
Often, an open door speaks of evangelistic opportunity. The following verses make it clear.

For a great and effective door has opened to me, and there are many adversaries. (1 Corinthians 16:9)

Furthermore, when I came to Troas to preach Christ’s gospel, and a door was opened to me by the Lord, (2 Corinthians 2:12)

meanwhile praying also for us, that God would open to us a door for the word, to speak the mystery of Christ, for which I am also in chains, (Colossians 4:3)

Sometimes God sets an open door of evangelistic opportunity in front of us, but we don’t see it. Let me give you an illustration to make this clear.

A man who had been touched for Jesus came to Charles Spurgeon (a famous preacher in the eighteenth century) and asked how he could win others to Jesus.  Spurgeon asked him, “What are you?  What do you do?”
The man said, “I’m an engine driver on a train.”
“Then,” said Spurgeon, “Is the man who shovels coal on your train a Christian?”
“I don’t know,” said the man.
“Go back,” said Spurgeon, and find out and start on him.”

Now you have got to understand that the Lord also shuts certain doors before us, so that we don’t go into paths that He has not ordained for us – paths that He knows will not be profitable for us. Let me give you a scripture for this.

Now when they had gone through Phrygia and the region of Galatia, they were forbidden by the Holy Spirit to preach the word in Asia. (Acts 16:6)

You see, the Lord Himself decides which doors we should go through, and which doors we should stop knocking at.

In the book of Jonah, we see how the Lord shut one door (of a ship, by getting Jonah thrown overboard) and opened another (of a fish’s mouth, by getting it to swallow Jonah). When the fish came came to the coast of Israel, the Lord opened the fish’s mouth once again to place His servant ashore. Thus God brought Jonah back to the place where He originally wanted His servant to be.

If God wants us in a particular place, He has ways and means of closing the wrong doors before us (getting us thrown out of somewhere perhaps!) and of opening the right doors in front of us. He even has means of transporting us back to “Square One” in our lives, so that we don’t miss His best! What He did for Jonah, He will do for us too. He will do even more.

The key to every door is in His hand. If you are a wholehearted disciple of the Lord with no hidden motives but to glorify God, you can be certain of one thing – nothing can stand in your way. Like automatic doors that open as soon as a person comes near them, every closed door that hinders you from moving forward in the fulfillment of God’s will, will open up before you – as soon as you come near it. He opens each door at the right time – not too soon and not too late. He will also close those doors that would make you miss His perfect will in your life. Hallelujah!
and no one can shut it; for (Revelation 3:8)
When the Lord has opened the door, no one can shut the door. He alone has all the authority.

you have a little strength, (Revelation 3:8)
The term a little strength does not imply weakness, but real strength.  They were weak enough to be strong in the Lord.  We can be “too strong” or “too big” or too sure of ourselves for God to really use us.  The church in Philadelphia had the poverty of spirit to know they really needed God’s strength.

Samson had great ability but poor dependability. On the other hand, the Apostle Paul’s was a great example of God’s strength being made perfect evident in his weaknesses.

have kept My word, (Revelation 3:8)
The Church of Philadelphia not only believed the word of God but she also kept the word (obeyed the word).

and have not denied My name.  (Revelation 3:8)
This church has not denied that Jesus alone is the Savior (His name) and the only way to God even when it became popular for those who identified with Christianity to have a “many ways to God theology like we have it today.

IV- Shortfalls/What was wrong with them?
None

V- Corrective Action/What they needed to do right?
None

Out of the seven Churches, only two Churches have no shortfalls and no corrective action is recommended – the first being Smyrna and the other Philadelphia. These two example shows us that it is possible to be such a messenger of the Lord and to be such a church as to receive no rebuke at all from the Lord when he examines us. This should be a challenge to all of us.

VI- Challenge
“He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.” (Revelation 3:13)

VII- Reward/Promise
Indeed I will make those of the synagogue of satan, who say they are Jews and are not, but lie—indeed I will make them come and worship before your feet, and to know that I have loved you. (Revelation 3:9)

It looks like the Christians in Philadelphia were persecuted by Jewish people  However, these persecuting Jews were Jews in name only as Lord Jesus Himself said. In this, Jesus does not speak against all Jewish people. He spoke of this specific group of Jewish people in Philadelphia who persecuted the Christians during that period.

The prophetic application of this passage is talking about Jewish persecution on true Jews who found their Messiah. This has been happening from the time of John even until today. Jews who convert to Christianity are ostracized by their family and friends.

The church here was being opposed by a synagogue of satan – similar to the one that was in Smyrna (v.9) Notice that the synagogue of satan opposed only two of the seven churches in Asia – the very two that the Lord commends unreservedly. Those churches that are most wholehearted for God are the ones that satan opposes the most. And satan’s opposition comes mainly through religious people.

Because you have kept My command to persevere, I also will keep you from the hour of trial which shall come upon the whole world, to test those who dwell on the earth. (Revelation 3:10)
Today many in the church are saying they do not expect Jesus anytime soon. In fact, some believe Jesus may not physically come back at all or at least not until the world is Christianized.

Most Bible scholars see this hour of trial as a prophetic reference to the Messianic woes, the Great Tribulation, which precede Jesus’ earthly kingdom.  Jesus promises to keep these Christians from that hour of trial. Since it is coming on the entire world this means that this Church will not be on earth for this trial. This time of trial is the great tribulation described later in the book of Revelation.

The time of trial for the world will come to test the world to see if they will believe God and accept the truth about the coming Kingdom of God ruled by Jesus or if they will believe the lies of the Beast Antichrist and become a member of the counterfeit kingdom that will lead them to their own destruction.

The faithful in this assembly will be taken before the judgment as Enoch was, because they are already walking faithfully with God and because His Spirit is in them.

Behold, I am coming quickly! (Revelation 3:11)
First, the church at Philadelphia must remember that Jesus is coming quickly, and they must prepare for His coming. The expression ‘quickly’ is to be understood as something which is sudden and unexpected, not necessarily immediate.

Hold fast what you have, (Revelation 3:11)
Hold fast what you have: The church at Philadelphia must not depart from its solid foundation, as described in Revelation 3:8:

  • Evangelistic opportunity (I have set before you an open door)
  • Reliance on God (You have a little strength)
  • Faithfulness to Jesus (have kept My word, and have not denied My name)

These things can and must continue among the church in Philadelphia, but it will only happen as they hold fast what they have.

that no one may take your crown. (Revelation 3:11)
God has planned a task and a crown for you. But if you are unfaithful in fulfilling that task, you won’t get that crown. God will raise up someone else to fulfill that task and he will get the crown that was meant for you. This is a real responsibility. So we must be watchful.

God had planned a specific task for Judas Iscariot, just as He had planned task for the other apostles of Christ. But Judas was unfaithful. So he lost his crown. Someone else (perhaps Apostle Paul) fulfilled the task that Judas was to have fulfilled. That person will now get Judas’ crown in addition to his own.

He who overcomes, I will make him a pillar in the temple of My God, and he shall go out no more. (Revelation 3:12)
The overcomers in the church will be pillars in New Jerusalem; they will dwell with God forever. Verse 12 of course is a figure of speech. Overcomers are not pillars they are people. Pillars are the main support for the temple. They will not go out of the temple because their bodies are the temple for the Spirit of God.

The descriptions of the Holy City in the last chapters of this book also make it clear that there will be no physical temple structure in the eternal Holy City. The temple of the Holy City will be the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb and He will indwell His people.

And I saw no temple therein: for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the temple of it. (Revelation 21:22)

Becoming a pillar practically also means that he will be a support to others in the church, bearing their burdens. He will be a spiritual “father” to others. I heard a man of God once say, “In Church there are many brothers and sisters. The real need of the hour is ‘Fathers’” In every church there is a great need for such pillars.

I will write on him the name of My God and the name of the city of My God, the New Jerusalem, which comes down out of heaven from My God. And I will write on him My new name. (Revelation 3:12)

The overcomer also receives many names

  1. The name of God
  2. The name of the city of God – the New Jerusalem
  3. The new name of Jesus

The importance of these names:
These names are marks of identification because they show who we belong to.
They are marks of intimacy, because it shows we are privileged to know Him in ways others are not.

The Church of the Laodiceans
14 “And to the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write, ‘These things says the Amen, the Faithful and True Witness, the Beginning of the creation of God: 15 “I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot. I could wish you were cold or hot. 16 So then, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will vomit you out of My mouth. 17 Because you say, ‘I am rich, have become wealthy, and have need of nothing’—and do not know that you are wretched, miserable, poor, blind, and naked— 18 I counsel you to buy from Me gold refined in the fire, that you may be rich; and white garments, that you may be clothed, that the shame of your nakedness may not be revealed; and anoint your eyes with eye salve, that you may see. 19 As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten. Therefore be zealous and repent. 20 Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me. 21 To him who overcomes I will grant to sit with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne. 22 “He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.” (Revelation 3:14-22)

I- A personal address to the church
“And to the angel of the church of Laodiceans write,” (Revelation 3:14)
The city was founded before 1000 BC but the city was named Laodicea in 250 BC. The physical location of the city was about 40 miles east of Ephesus.

There is evidence that the people in the city liked to be entertained. The ruins indicate that the city had a gymnasium, a large racetrack, three lavish theaters and some bathhouses. Laodicea was so wealthy that when it had a massive earthquake in 60 AD the city actually refused outside aid from Rome. The name of the city means, “rule by the people”. The city is known to have had a large Jewish community.

The Christian church was also wealthy and ruins of her buildings can still be seen in that area. Even though we know this church had large buildings, nothing is known of the ministry of this church outside of Laodicea. This by itself tells us that the church was self centered and added little to early Christian evangelism and missionary efforts.

II- Character description of Jesus
“These things says the Amen, the Faithful and True Witness, the Beginning of the creation of God; (Revelation 3:14)

Lord Jesus Christ first reveals Himself to this church as the “Amen,” which means “I believe” and is usually spoken in response to some truth or promise of God.

In Chapter 1, I have already discussed as to why Lord Jesus is referred at the ‘True Witness’

Lord Jesus created all things in creation. The text “beginning of the creation of God” should read the “beginner of the creation of God”. Some take this passage in the King James and claim that Jesus Himself was created but the text is not saying that. It is saying that He is the one who started creation.

Other passages in scripture make it perfectly clear that Jesus is the Creator and is God.
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. (speaking of Jesus) (John 1:1)

For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. (Isaiah 9:6)

III- Recognition/What they were doing right?
There’s not one word of commendation for this compromising, unbelieving church. You would think that Lord Jesus would come up with something to commend, but He hates compromise and spiritual indifference so intensely that He will not encourage them in any way.

IV- Shortfalls/What was wrong with them?
I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot. I could wish you were cold or hot. (Revelation 3:15)
Here is another Church that did not have any Jezebels or false teachings in it. They were neither immoral nor evil. But they were not on fire for God either. They were just plain ‘lukewarm’. In contrast the Bible commands us in Leviticus 6:13

A fire shall always be burning on the altar; it shall never go out. (Leviticus 6:13)

The Lord wants our hearts to be on fire at all times. He wants our hearts aflame with a fervent love for Him and for other Christians.

Have you often heard people say, “I have nothing in my heart against anyone” ok! Did Lord Jesus say, “All men will know that you are my disciples when you have nothing in your hearts against each other?”No! The absence of evil attitudes towards each other is not the identifying mark of the disciples of Lord Jesus. We must have fervent love for all fellow Christians. Love is a positive virtue and not just the absence of evil.

So then because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will vomit you out of My mouth. (Revelation 3:16)
How are the churches in the mouth of Jesus?

  • They are in His mouth because they spread His Word
  • They are in His mouth because He prays for them constantly

What a terrible thing to be expelled from the mouth of Jesus!

V- Corrective Action/What they needed to do right?

Because you say, I am rich, have become wealthy, and have need of nothing – and do not know that you are wretched, miserable, poor, blind, and naked- (Revelation 3:17)

In Sardi, the messenger and the Church had a reputation before others that they were ‘spiritual’. In Laodicea, they did’nt even have that reputation. They were ‘spiritual’ only in their own eyes.

Both the messenger and the Church were completely unaware of their backslidden state – just like many today. Notice that they looked at their spiritual condition and said, “We are rich, we have become wealthy, we have no need of anything.” They were the complete opposite of Matthew 5:3 which says:
“Blessed are the poor in spirit,
For theirs is the kingdom of heaven. (Matthew 5:3)

The church at Laodicea totally lacked a sense spiritual poverty.

The Lord’s opinion of them was the exact opposite of their own evaluation of themselves. He calls them, “wretched, miserable, poor, blind, and naked”

The city of Laodicea was famous for its wealth, but the Christians of the city were spiritually wretched, miserable, and poor.  Laodicea was famous for its healing eye ointment, but the Christians of the city were spiritually blind.  Laodicea was famous for its fine clothing, but the Christians of the city were spiritually naked.

It is common knowledge that many Christians have a far higher opinion of their own spirituality than the Lord has of them. David humbled himself and prayed in Psalm 19:12
Who can understand his errors?
Cleanse me from secret faults. (Psalm 19:12)

Humble yourself before the Lord and ask Him to show you those areas of your life where He thinks you need to change.

I counsel you to buy from Me gold refined in the fire, that you may be rich; and white garments, that you may be clothed, that the shame of your nakedness may not be revealed; and anoint your eyes with eye salve, that you may see. (Revelation 3:18)

Gold refined by fire is without any alloy (impurities) in it and it symbolizes the divine nature that is pure. This is what we need to partake of within us.

White garments speaks of the Lord’s righteousness

Eye salve refers to the revelation of the Holy Spirit that enables us to see everything from God’s point of view.
The parable of the hidden treasure in the field and the man seeking fine pearls, (Matthew 13:44-46) teach that the kingdom of God can be obtained only by those who are willing to give up everything. To the Christians in Laodicea too, the Lord says the same thing. They have to pray a price to obtain spiritual wealth. Notice the Lord tells them to ‘buy’.

Salvation is free in Christ when you believe in your heart that Jesus Christ is your Lord and Redeemer, Savior and King of your life. But, Christformation happens in you with a price to be paid by you.

VI- Challenge
As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten. (Revelation 3:19)
Then Lord then says that He rebukes and disciplines only those whom He loves. Its very comforting to know this. When we are corrected and chastened by the Lord, we must bear in mind that these are not indications of His displeasure but of His great love for us. This further goes to prove that there is still hope for us.

Therefore be zealous and repent. (Revelation 3:19)
The Lord exhorts the messenger and the Church at Laodicea to “zealous and repent” Why? Sometimes even our repentance can be sluggish. We must be zealous and wholehearted about our repentance too.

Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me. (Revelation 3:20)
If you notice, Lord Jesus is standing on the outside, knocking to get in – very sad.  If the church at Philadelphia was “The Church of the Open Door,” then the church at Laodicea is “The Church of the Shut Door.” Again, the key to opening the door is to first hear His voice.  When we give attention to what Jesus says, only then we can be rescued from our own lukewarmness and enter into an “intimate” relationship with Him.

Dining with us speaks of intimacy and close fellowship. This promise is only made to those who ‘hear His voice’

Pay careful attention to the word ‘anyone’. It is your choice whether you will open the door of your heart to Him or not.

VII- Reward/Promise
To him who overcomes I will grant to sit with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne. (Revelation 3:21)
Jesus Himself was the first overcomer. He is our Forerunner. He paved the way for us by setting the example of how we are to get it done. He says, “just as I did it and sat on the throne of my Father, I want you also to do it and sit with me.”

This verse also proves that Jesus Christ is none other than ‘God Almighty’. Notice it says, “I…sat down with my Father on His throne” If the Father is already sitting on the throne then how can Jesus claim to sit ‘with Him’ unless He and the Father are ‘One’ (John 10:30)

“He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.”’” (Revelation 3:22)

Back to Bible Commentary