Today you should read: Revelation 2:8-11
We are now rolling through the letters to the seven churches in Revelation. Today we look at the letter to the church in Smyrna. This message is pretty short so let’s break it down a bit.
- The greeting- “This is the message from the one who is the First and the Last, who was dead and is now alive;”
Each message has a unique greeting that we can assume have special meaning to the church being addressed and their current situation at that time. What we see here are two descriptions of Jesus that I believe are foundational truths this church is going to rally need to lean on. Here they are:
- Jesus has always been and always will be. He was in the beginning and will be there in the end.
- Jesus defeated death. His sacrifice cleared us from our sins and His resurrection sealed death and sins fate for good.
- Jesus knows the situation they are in- “I know about your suffering and your poverty- but you are rich! I know the blasphemy of those opposing you. They say they are Jews, but they are not, because their synagogue belongs to Satan.”
Jesus wanted this church to know secondly, that they were not forgotten. They were in a bind. They were in the midst of some real struggles. They were suffering persecution from a particular group of Jews as well as dealing with some poverty. Jesus knew their situation and He knows yours too.
- Jesus told them they were about to face even more trials- “Don’t be afraid of what you are about to suffer. The devil will throw some of you into prison to test you. You will suffer for ten days. But if you remain faithful even when facing death, I will give you the crown of life.”
When you and I face trials and hard times the last thing we want to hear is that there is more on the way. That was exactly what happened here. This is where those two things about Jesus come into play. If Jesus is all-powerful and has conquered death and sin then in the midst of persecution and struggle we can find hope and peace as we struggle for Him.
Posted by: Robbie Byrd