Revelation 2:1-7: The church in Ephesus

 “To the angel of the church in Ephesus write:

These are the words of him who holds the seven stars in his right hand and walks among the seven golden lampstands. I know your deeds, your hard work and your perseverance. I know that you cannot tolerate wicked people, that you have tested those who claim to be apostles but are not, and have found them false. You have persevered and have endured hardships for my name, and have not grown weary.

Yet I hold this against you: You have forsaken the love you had at first.Consider how far you have fallen! Repent and do the things you did at first. If you do not repent, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place. But you have this in your favor: You hate the practices of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate.

Whoever has ears, let them hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To the one who is victorious, I will give the right to eat from the tree of life,which is in the paradise of God.  Revelation 2:1-7.

This first letter is to the church of Ephesus.  Every one of the seven letters begins with a description of Jesus Christ as this is a direct word from the Lord for the church.  It is important as the body of Christ that we examine these letters because these letters reflect exactly how the Lord feels about certain spiritual conditions that exist in a local body of believers.  These seven letters represent seven spiritual conditions.

The Lord begins His message to them by praising them for areas they have been strong in.  They have persevered and have tested those who claim to be apostles.  Whenever the Lord is going to bring correction He always begins by high lighting areas that they are very strong in so that when the correction comes those hearing will receive it.  We must look carefully at how the Lord corrects these churches.  It is not done in a harsh manner, but it is done in love.

The Lord calls them to repent because they have forsaken their first love.  Even though they started out strong they have turn their hearts from the Lord.  In our relationship with God and our pursuit with Him we must seek Him daily with our whole heart.  If we fail to seek Him daily with our whole heart it is very easy to become distracted and fall off track.  The warning to the church is that if they don’t repent that He will indeed remove their lamp stand.

The purpose of a lamp stand is to hold a lamp that would give light.  Every local body of Christ has the express purpose of being a light in a dark world.  Because they had forsaken their first love the Lord warned that if they did not repent that He would remove their lamp stand.  Restoration and healing always begins with repentance.  If we are unwilling to repent restoration and healing is not able to take place.

The Lord states that whoever has ears to hear.  Throughout the gospels Jesus made this statement over and over again and it simply speaks of spiritual understanding and insight.  Having ears to hear would not only hear what the Lord is saying but respond to it in action.  God has given us His word to not only be read, but He has given us His word to live by on a daily basis.

Being victorious in the Christian life simply refers to walking with the Lord till the end and being faithful.  A mark of Christian maturity is that we move beyond the struggles of yesterday and we walk in the character and nature of Christ.  God simply seeks those who are faithful and those who will hold fast to the Lord no matter what life throws our way.

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