He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches
How does the messages to the seven Churches mentioned in Revelation 2-3 apply today? There is a constant message throughout all the messages, what is it, and how does that have to do with us today? Let’s start.
The Message of Revelation 2-3 to the Churches and How it applies to us today!
By The Worldwide Church of God Archives Staff
Behold, I will make them of the synagogue of Satan, which say they are Jews, and are not, but do lie; behold, I will make them to come and worship before thy feet, and to know that I have loved thee.(Rev 3:9) These things saith he that holdeth the seven stars in his right hand, who walketh in the midst of the seven golden candlesticks. I know thy works, and thy labour, and thy patience, and how thou canst not bear them which are evil: and thou hast tried them which say they are apostles, and are not, and hast found them liars: And hast borne, and hast patience, and for my name’s sake hast laboured, and hast not fainted.(Rev 2:1-3)The Philadelphia Era of God’s Church(Worldwide Church of God) today have been faced with the MANY groups calling themselves “God’s Church” which God calls “The Synogogue of Satan”. We in the Church are faced with False Apostles(Rev 2:2), and we have found them liars. Look at the PCG and RCG, and the Apostles of the other groups(The STP formula being used), all trying to replace God’s Apostle, Mr. Herbert W Armstrong. But We have found them liars. They do not speak what we were given by Jesus Christ through His Apostle Mr. Herbert W Armstrong. But we today of the Philaelphia Era of God’s Church(Worldwide Church of God) have TRIED, tested the spirits of those calling themselves APOSTLES, but have found them LIARS. They are not of God. The Apostle of the PCG is not of God. The Apostle of the RCG is not of God. The STP, the Apostle of the UCG, LCG, etc,etc and other groups is NOT of God. What is God’s Message to us who have strayed from what was taught?
Nevertheless I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love.(Rev 2:4)When we leave the teachings we were taught, the Truth we were taught through Christ’s Apostle, is God FOR US? What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us?(Rom 3:8) But God is AGAINST when we REBEL, He is against our departures! That is the Clear statement Christ is saying in Verse 4.
Remember therefore from whence thou art fallen, and repent, and do the first works; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will remove thy candlestick out of his place, except thou repent. (Rev 2:4-5)Get BACK ON TRACK is the CLEAR message here! Repent from our departures from God and His Truth and Get back to the FIRST works. Back to what we were FIRST given, FIRST taught. Reminds me of the TWO TREES Mr. Armstrong kept going back to. We have to OBEY God and His Word, His Truth given to us through His Apostle. If we refuse to repent and GET BACK ON TRACK, God is no longer going to consider us HIS CHURCH, the Candlestick is going to be removed from us!
My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because thou hast rejected knowledge(Refused to Repent and get back to God’s Truth, God’s Revealed Knowledge), I will also reject thee, that thou shalt be no priest to me: seeing thou hast forgotten the law of thy God, I will also forget thy children.(Hosea 4:6) But this thou hast, that thou hatest the deeds of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate.(Rev 2:6)God’s Church does not keep Christmas, Easter and the other holidays stemmed in Paganism, but in contrast we Keep God’s Holy Days.
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 tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God.(Rev 2:7)Those who OVERCOME, who REPENT, who GET BACK ON TRACK, will be given Eternal Life(The Tree of Life).
I know thy works, and tribulation, and poverty, (but thou art rich) and I know the blasphemy of them which say they are Jews, and are not, but are the synagogue of Satan. (Rev 2:9)Here God is encouraging us, admonishing us the HE KNOWS what these false Churches are teaching. That reveals that we in God’s Church today are very CONCERNED about what these false churches are teaching, and we’re beseeching God about it. God is telling us HE KNOWS. What are we to do? Christ tells us.
Fear none of those things which thou shalt suffer: behold, the devil shall cast some of you into prison, that ye may be tried; and ye shall have tribulation ten days: be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life.(Rev 2:10)Does God say for us to be TOLERANT to their false teachings and ways? Does He tell us to compromise His Truth for these false churches and teachings? God’s Church WILL BE persecuted, it is being persecuted today.
And when the dragon saw that he was cast unto the earth, he persecuted the woman which brought forth the man child.(Rev 12:13)Some of God’s people are cast into prison, because of of the False Apostles of these false Churches God calls the Synogogue of Satan. God says NOT to fear what they are going to do to us. What are we to do? Be FAITHFUL til the END, unto DEATH. Not to change your beliefs to save your life. Too many deny Jesus Christ when faced with a hard decision. But we are to Obey God rather than men(That means ourselves as well). Getting BACK ON TRACK with what Jesus Christ taught us through His Apostle is a LIFE AND DEATH decision! Don’t think it isn’t!
He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; He that overcometh shall not be hurt of the second death.(Rev 2:11)He that OVERCOMES, who GETS BACK ON TRACK with what we were given through Christ’s Apostle won’t be resurrected into the Lake of Fire(The second Death) That is A PROMISE from Jesus Christ! Now God addresses us after Mr. Armstrong dies, we who are scattered within these Synogogues of Satan, these COG Groups teaching contrary to what we were given through Mr. Armstrong.
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.(Rev 2:12-13)Those of us who are scattered in these COG groups, where we DWELL, some are cotninuing with what we were taught, but again fellowshiping with unbelievers. Fellowshiping with the Synogoue of Satan, teaching contrary to what was taught. This is where SATAN sits! Satan sits in His Churches, the synogogue of Satan. There are those of us HOLDING FAST to what we have, some even be martyred(by the Synogogue of Satan). What is God’s Message to us who are fellowshiping with these non-believers?
But I have a few things against thee, because thou hast there them that hold the doctrine of Balaam, who taught Balac to cast a stumblingblock before the children of Israel, to eat things sacrificed unto idols, and to commit fornication.(Rev 2:14)They are not following Christ’s Command to disfellowship and mark those who cause division contrary to to the Doctrines what we were given through Christ’s Apostle. These false ministers and brethren, are teaching God’s people to join their churches and Works. To sacrifice unto their works, send them God’s tithes and offerings. To Feed on their doctrines, their teachings INSTEAD of what Jesus Christ gave us through His Apostle, Mr. Herbert W Armstrong! This is explaining the STP program being used. Their program INSTEAD of Christ’s program established through His Apostle! These false ministers and brethren are using a FALSE APOSTLE, the STP formula(and their leaders) which is a STUMBLINGBLOCK to the Church, so says GOD!
So hast thou also them that hold the doctrine of the Nicolaitans, which thing I hate. (Rev 2:15)That is one good thing, they do not keep Christmas, Easter and this world’s Pagan Holidays. Indicating they are keeping God’s Holy Days. That is just about only ONE Good Thing God says about them who have departed, who are scattered in the many splinter Churches today. But is that ALL that is required here?
Repent; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will fight against them with the sword of my mouth.(Rev 2:16)God’s message is to REPENT, come out of her my people, Get BACK ON TRACK with what Jesus Christ gave us through His Apostle, Back to God’s Truth restored! Obey God’s command to Disfellowship and Mark them teaching contrary, AVOIDING them! Where God says to REPENT, HOLD FAST, OVERCOME, God is saying to OBEY God’s FULL COUNCIL which He gave us through Christ’s Apostle! Obeying God FULLY. To BE the Philadelphia ERA of God’s Church!
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.(Rev 2:17)Again, we who get BACK ON TRACK will be given the Holy Spirit and be FED food from God! Be nourished by God’s Truth, as we were taught through Christ’s Apostle!
And unto the angel of the church in Thyatira write; These things saith the Son of God, who hath his eyes like unto a flame of fire, and his feet are like fine brass; I know thy works, and charity, and service, and faith, and thy patience, and thy works; and the last to be more than the first.(Rev 2:18-19)Here God is addressing us who have come a LONG way, who have GROWN on that Truth. Here is God’s Warning to those of us, after learning what the COG groups truly are. Are we to go back to them, and join the “Closest one to the Truth”? Some have, what does God say to them?
Notwithstanding I have a few things against thee, because thou sufferest that woman Jezebel(These false Churches, and false ministers(such as Garner Ted Armstrong and others)), which calleth herself a prophetess(which includes the Seventh day Adventists, because they have one who calls herself a PROPHETESS – Ellen G. White. But this is ALL INCLUSIVE, it applies to all of these synagogues of Satan, Churches of this World. The COG’S), to teach and to seduce my servants to commit fornication(To REJECT God’s Revealed Knowledge through His Apostle, to reject God’s Government through His True Apostle), and to eat things sacrificed unto idols.(Rev 2:20)These Churches want us in God’s Church to Reject Herbert W Armstrong and what he taught us, and then to EAT, LISTEN and take in what THEY TEACH, take part in what they are doing, “to eat things sacrificed unto idols”. God says Don’t!
And I gave her space to repent of her fornication; and she repented not. Behold, I will cast her into a bed, and them that commit adultery with her into great tribulation, except they repent of their deeds.(Rev 2:21-22)God does, however, give us time to REPENT. God has given these among these groups time to REPENT. But to thsoe who REPENTED NOT, those who didn’t heed God’s warning and command to HOLD FAST, to GET BACK ON TRACK, will join and continue with these splinter groups teaching contrary, continuing in these false churches, they are slated to the Great Tribulation, EXCEPT they REPENT. God only wants us to REPENT and Get Back on Track with Jesus Christ and with what he gave us through His Apostle Mr. Herbert W Armstrong!! God wants us to get away from those speaking different things than what Jesus Christ gave us to speak through the Apostle! To Stop fellowshiping with these false groups. To Get BACK ON TRACK. HOLD Fast to what we were taught through Mr. Armstrong! What is God going to do with these false Churches?
And I will kill her children with death; and all the churches shall know that I am he which searcheth the reins and hearts: and I will give unto every one of you according to your works.(Rev 2:23)Why death? Because they do not Follow God’s Way of Life, they are living what is right in their own eyes. They Vote on Doctrine, they have democracy. They teach their corporate works is only part of the Body of Christ, stopping anyone to gon toward God’s Kingdom. They are deciding on already PROVEN doctrine, contrary to what we were taught! They change already proven Truths and doctrines and Policies. They are in rebellion, and their end is death. Then these Churches(Cog’s) WILL KNOW God is God! And they will come to KNOW that God loved Mr. Armstrong and those faithful with him(Rev 3:9)
But unto you I say, and unto the rest in Thyatira, 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.(Rev 2:24-25)Now God is speaking to those OUTSIDE of these Churches. Those of us who have come to the TRUTH what God’s True Church really is, and have decided NOT to join these false churches who are teaching contrary to what we are taught through Christ’s Apostle Mr. Herbert W Armstrong. What is God’s Command to us? To HOLD FAST til Christ comes. He doesn’t say join another group, throw away the doctrines you were taught through the Apostle. But to HOLD FAST!!!
And he that overcometh, and keepeth my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations: And he shall rule them with a rod of iron; as the vessels of a potter shall they be broken to shivers: even as I received of my Father. And I will give him the morning star. He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches.(Rev 2:26-29)Again, another command to OVERCOME, REPENT, GET BACK ON TRACK, HOLD FAST! To KEEP THEM unto the END!
Be watchful, and strengthen the things which remain, that are ready to die: for I have not found thy works perfect before God.(Rev 3:2)Watch and Pray Always! Strengthen the things which remain, what does that refer to? Strengthen what we were given to us through the Apostle! And STRENGTHEN it, not throw it away! And they are being thrown away. What was taught is being stopped and stifled, Being killed off! This is another verse that says to GET BACK ON TRACK, because you are not yet PERFECT. WHY? Because they have thrown out, or neglected to be faithful to the Apostle, and what Jesus Christ sent with him!
And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ: (Eph 4:11-13)God is telling us to return to God’s Government through the Apostle! God is saying GET in line with His Government! To Get BACK ON TRACK with God and His Government. Because some of us are not heeding it.
Remember therefore how thou hast received and heard, and hold fast, and repent. If therefore thou shalt not watch, I will come on thee as a thief, and thou shalt not know what hour I will come upon thee. Thou hast a few names even in Sardis which have not defiled their garments; and they shall walk with me in white: for they are worthy.(Rev 3:3-4)Remember how we have receied and heard! How did we recieve God’s Truth? How does God give the Church the Truth, and doctrines of which is ought to believe and speak? Through the Apostle! God is saying to Remember Christ’s APOSTLE! God’s Way prepared! God’s Government! Then what? Hold FAST to it! That is the recurring command here to HOLD FAST. Hold Fast to God’s Government. Hold Fast to what we were given. Then God warns us to WATCH, and gives us warning to those who do not! Again a FEW repent and Get Back on Track with God’s Government in His Church through the Apostle.
He that overcometh, the same shall be clothed in white raiment; and I will not blot out his name out of the book of life, but I will confess his name before my Father, and before his angels. He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches. (Rev 3:5-6)Again he/she who OVERCOMES, REPENTS, HOLDS FAST, will be clothed with white raiment, God’s Righteousness, The Holy Spirit. Another promise to the Faithful. And it is indicating that those who WON’T get BACK ON TRACK will not be in God’s Kingdom. Because those who do GET BACK ON TRACK, those who do OVERCOME and REPENT will be in the Book of Life and have Favour with Jesus Christ where He speaks about us before God the Father and the Angels. Now we come to those who REPENT, GET BACK ON TRACK with God and His Apostle, HOLDING FAST to God’s Government and Truth restored. Mr. Herbert W Armstrong, the Apostle to this Era, is Summed up here. This is what Christ wants us! On track with Him, an able instrument in the hands of the Living God!
And to the angel of the church in Philadelphia write; These things saith he that is holy, he that is true, he that hath the key of David, he that openeth, and no man shutteth; and shutteth, and no man openeth; I know thy works: behold, I have set before thee an open door, and no man can shut it: for thou hast a little strength, and hast kept my word, and hast not denied my name. (Rev 3:7-8)Most specifically this is referring to Christ’s Apostle, Mr. Herbert W Armstrong. Because it is through him the True Gospel is proclaimed FAITHFULLY, anyone else has perverted it. Notice also Jesus Christ is the one who is HOLY, who is TRUE, who has the KEY OF DAVID, who opens the doors and shuts them, of which NO MAN can open or shut! Sorry Gerald Flurry, this is NOT referring to you. Jesus Christ opened the door through His Apostle, no man can shut it. Christ has shut the open doors when you go another way other through Christ and His Apostle. Anyone not going through WITH the Apostle and tries to open it, when it is shut(because of their rejection of God and His Government and Truth restored) is NOT of God.
Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that entereth not by the door into the sheepfold, but climbeth up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber. But he that entereth in by the door is the shepherd of the sheep. To him the porter openeth; and the sheep hear his voice: and he calleth his own sheep by name, and leadeth them out. And when he putteth forth his own sheep, he goeth before them, and the sheep follow him: for they know his voice. And a stranger will they not follow, but will flee from him: for they know not the voice of strangers.(John 10:1-5)Jesus Christ gives a good testimony of His Apostle here, he, the Apostle, has KEPT my WORD and has not denied Christ’s Name! We are to do the same! How can we when we are speaking something different, believing something different, operating differently than what Jesus Christ said to be through the Apostle?
Behold, I will make them of the synagogue of Satan, which say they are Jews, and are not, but do lie; behold, I will make them to come and worship before thy feet, and to know that I have loved thee.(Rev 3:9)God is going to MAKE these OF, owned by, the Synogogue of Satan to KNOW that God loved Mr. Armstrong. HOW? He will be in the Kingdom and they are not. Those called to these False Churches of this world, they will have to go through him to be taught God’s Way. To be educated on God’s Way of Life, instead of these false teachers and preachers in the COG’s and Churches today!
Because thou hast kept the word of my patience, I also will keep thee from the hour of temptation, which shall come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth.(Rev 3:10)Here is the promise to those who OBEYS what Christ has said through His Apostle, who listened to what he has said to the seven Churches of Revelation 2-3. A Promise to be protected in a LITERAL Place of Protection from the Great Tribulation those who refuse to heed will be going through.
Behold, I come quickly: hold that fast which thou hast, that no man take thy crown.(Rev 3:11)Again that Command Again! How many times does God has to tell us to HOLD FAST, To NEVER LET GO of what we were given!!?? It is THAT important!
Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name. He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches.(Rev 3:12-13)Again another promise to those FAITHFUL. They are given promise that they will be CONCRETED in God’s Family and Kingdom! No more are they going to leave and come back, to waver in the faith once delivered! Our minds would be SET in God’s WAY! That is the GOAL here! Now after ALL THINGS have been restored to the Church, God again addresses those who waver from what we were taught. This is to those who had received the Apostle and Christ’s teachings through him, but wavered and departed. Leaning onto their own understanding. Although we are NOT in that era of God’s Church YET. This is directed ONCE AGAIN to those who are with those who were put out of God’s Church, such as the groups started by Garner Ted Armstrong, C. Wayne Cole, dissidents put out and marked by Christ’s Apostle, out of God’s Church, groups started by men who REBELLED against God and His Government and started their own groups and works of their own. They are NOT God’s Church today! When they REPENT and GET BACK ON TRACK, then and ONLY THEN are they “God’s Church”! Until then they are OUTSIDE of God’s Church, pretending they are God’s Church(Rev 3:9). Notice what God says FIRST!
And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God;(Rev 3:14)When God says “AMEN”, God is saying HE MEANT WHAT HE SAID! It is CORRECTION from God to GET BACK TO WHAT HE HAS SAID THROUGH HIS APOSTLE! Christ is the FAITHFUL and True Witness working through Mr. Herbert W Armstrong! And it was through Mr. Armstrong God started or BEGAN His Spiritual Temple of today through! Here Jesus Christ is explaining it was HIM, JESUS CHRIST who was doing it, because these people are beleiving it was Herbert W Armstrong’s work, or legacy and OPINION. NOT Jesus Christ who done it through and by the Power of His Holy Spirit through ONE MAN, Mr. Herbert W Armstrong! That is why Jesus Christ has to say the OBVIOUS HERE! And God gives WARNING to them THEIR END, as he has in previous verses. DEATH is the end for those who beleive it was only Herbert W Armstrong and his opinion, that is the SECOND DEATH. The Lake of Fire is what God spews them out into, unless they REPENT!
I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot. So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth.(Rev 3:15-16)God can no longer stand their rebellion! Because that is what it is!
Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked:(Rev 3:17)Notice, their focus is THEMSELVES! They have lost God from the picture. This shows how they think. This shows their high opinion of themselves, in contrast to the opinion of others they have. This is why they look down on Mr. Herbert W Armstrong with such disrespect and dishonor, they think they are above everything Jesus Christ had done. Notice the contrast to what they think and what God says they are.
I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see.(Rev 3:18)Here God is counciling them as new converts. They have to seek God and His correction, and God’s Truth. To ask and receive the Holy Spirit to see their ways and to See God’s Way so they can replace their own ways.
As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent. 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. To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne. He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches.(Rev 3:19-22)Here it is again, Repent, get back on track, surrender to God’s Government over their lives. God means what He says, repetition shows the IMPORTANCE to do as God says. Those who REPENT and Get back on track with Christ and His Apostle, they’ll be accounted Worthy of the promises mentioned in these verses. One promise however is only given to those PRIOR to the Great Tribulation. Those who repent after the Tribulation starts, will have to lose their heads and die for God, to receive the other promises, Especially the promise of Eternal Life.