“I was in the Spirit on the Lord’s Day and I heard behind me a loud voice, as of a trumpet, saying, ‘I am Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last,’ and, ‘What you see, write in a book and send it to the seven churches which are in Asia: to Ephesus, to Smyrna, to Pergamum, to Thyatira, to Sardis, to Philadelphia, and to Laodicea…He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches'”
Revelation 1:9-11; 3:22 NKJV
Again, we are looking at the distinguishing features of the seven handpicked churches Jesus chose to address this final word concerning the end times. As we come to the middle three you will notice a surprising downward spiral which seems to serve as a warning to us of how a little sin inside our churches can get a lot worse before it gets better!
Remember these messages were specific to each congregation in those cities at that time, but they serve as one big warning for the church at large until Jesus returns. Yesterday, we keyed on the compromise found in Pergamum. Church politics often serve as a substitute for seeking God’s will and a breeding ground for the two faces of scriptural sin, rebellion (not doing what God wants) and presumption (doing what God does not want). From that platform a church can soon find itself mired in shocking levels of corruption. Then, before anyone realizes it, that body stalls spiritually lifeless. This is exactly the condition of the next two churches!
Thyatira was the next city on our postal route, and it would have been the first stop headed back south after traveling north from Ephesus, through Smyrna to Pergamum. If you look at a Bible map of the region you will see it is almost as if the Lord painted us pictographic simile. Once the point of compromise is reached it can be a slippery downward slope!
This next church is known as the “Corrupt Church” by many because it compromised its compromise! If the church in Pergamum was affected by living so close to a satanic atmosphere, Thyatira was responsible for letting one of his servants usurp control of the church! Jesus called the suspicious woman in question, Jezebel as a way of communicating the level of wicked spiritual manipulation she exercised within this congregation. This entity took the entire church into “the depths of Satan” (Revelation 2:24) and Jesus came with fire in His eyes to deal with the situation! Think about it today, Satanism inside a local church?! Tomorrow we take it a step further…