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  • Writer's pictureJan Weihl

The Compromising Church (Revelation 2)

In Jesus' messages to the first 3 churches He condemned a church that was no longer focused on Him, commends one that was focused on Him even under persecution, and then condemns one that was allowing false teaching. But what would He say to me?

As I study the 7 churches of Revelation again, I am reminded that the question I always want to ask is what would Jesus be saying to me. What would He be rebuking me for and what would He be encouraging me about?

It's easy to look at others and see their faults and then walk away without seeing our own. So that's the mindset I want to have as I look at these churches. Where do I sit with the messages Jesus is giving?

The 4th church is Thyatira, which is now modern day Akhisar, Turkey. Thyatira was known for abundant crops of the Madder plant from which purple dye was made to make purple fabric.

It's thought that Lydia, who was a seller of purple fabric, may have been from Thyatira but traveled to Philippi to sell her materials so that she would not be forced to compromise her faith in Thyatira by condoning or participating in the sexual immorality and food sacrificed to idols which the trade guilds would have required her to support.

The church of Thyatira was condemned by Jesus for tolerating this false teaching which was leading people astray:

Revelation 2:20 I have this against you: You tolerate that woman Jezebel, who calls herself a prophet. By her teaching she misleads my servants into sexual immorality and the eating of food sacrificed to idols.

Apparently the church leaders knew what was being taught and they were tolerating it. They knew not correcting this teaching which violated God's Word was wrong. But they continued to allow it anyway, likely because of the pressure from the trade guilds to accept it or see people unable to sell anything.

We see this today in our world too don't we? We see the world pressuring the church to tolerate all forms of sexual immorality. Day by day, we see more and more churches making the same decision the leaders of Thyatira did to tolerate it.

But Jesus' warning to Thyatira in Revelation 2:20-23 to repent of this, turn back to Him and hold fast to His teaching doesn't just apply to Thyatira. It applies just as much to us today and to our churches.

The only question is will we stand strong on the Word of God or cave to the world around us.

Dear Lord, Your messages to the 7 churches of Revelation is very clearly written to all of us today. We are to stand strong on Your Word and flee from anyone who pressures us to condone what Your Word calls sin. Lord, there are so many tools out there being used to catch our eye and lure us in. Lord, I ask for your protection from being drawn in by the deceptive lures dangled before our eyes both for myself, my husband, our kids, and our church. Lord, help each of us draw close to You daily so that we may face the world with your armor on, shining your light and your love to everyone we come in contact with. In Jesus' name I pray, amen.

Jan Weihl

Living Word Ministries

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