NT Fire Starters – Day 341: Revelation 2:1-17
READ: Revelation 2:1-17
THINK: Consider the spiritual condition of the churches addressed in this passage. Then ask yourself: Am I staying pure in spiritual beliefs but also passionate in spiritual practice? Am I doing things for Christ, but not taking time to be with Him? Is serving Jesus a matter of convenience, or is it truly costing me something? Am I focused more on what I get from God than on surrendering to Him? Is my outward testimony being threatened by inward compromise?
RESPOND: For what did Jesus commend the church in Ephesus (vv. 2-3)? How did this church respond to false leaders, and how is this an example to all churches? What did the Lord have against this church? (See 2:4 note.) In what way had people forsaken their “first love”? Why did this happen? What does it mean to “repent and do the things you did at first” (v.5)? What would happen if they failed to do this? (See 2:5 note.) How can individual Christians and churches avoid losing their first love? Who were the Nicolaitans and what did they do that the Lord hated? (See 2:6 note.) Who are overcomers and what is their reward? (See 2:7 note.) What social and political conditions did the church in Smyrna endure? (See 2:9 note.) How was the church doing, materially and spiritually? In what way was it “rich”? What warning and encouragement did Jesus offer this church? (See 2:10 note.) What is “the second death” that overcomers won’t experience? (See 2:11 note.) Why is Pergamum described as a place “where Satan has his throne”? (See 2:13 note.) In what way were some in the church defying God and causing others to compromise their faith? (See 2:14 note.) What would the Lord do if they didn’t repent? (See 2:16 note.) What does it mean to “hear what the Spirit says”? (See 2:17 first note.) What does it mean that overcomers will get “a white stone with a new name written on it”? (See 2:17 second note.)
PRAY: Pray that you’ll never abandon your love for Jesus, but that it would grow day by day. Ask God to help you resist influences that could lead to spiritual compromise. Ask Him to help you respond to His Word with obedience and action.
ACT: As you go through the day, consider whether any of your actions or behaviors could give anyone a wrong impression of Christ or what it means to follow Him. Make a deliberate effort to avoid and resist attitudes and actions that could compromise your character or mislead others spiritually. Do things that build people up and give them an accurate impression of Jesus. Also, try to read the article on Christ’s Message to the Seven Churches, p. 1914.