Rev. Bruce A. Shields
First Baptist Church Tawas City Michigan USA
Revelation Chapter 2
Vs. 12-17: to the church in Pergamos
Key Verse; Revelation 1:19
“Write, therefore, what you have seen, what is now and what will take place later.”
Revelation Chapter 1: Things you have seen,
Revelation Chapter 2 & 3: The things which are,
Revelation Chapters 4 – 22: The things which shall be hereafter.
Chapter 2 & 3 – The Things that Are.
Chapter 1 – We see the Lord Jesus as the Glorified One.
Chapter 2&3 – We see the Lord Jesus as the Head over the Church.
Chapter 4-22 – We see the Lord Jesus as the Triumphant One.
We will see the Lords striking message to the seven churches of Asia.
They are applicable to the churches of today.
Before the vision of the Father in Heaven in Revelation Chapter 4, we have the vision and words of the Son, Jesus Christ in Chapters 1 – 3.
We must know the Son before we can know the Father. He is the only way to God.
ANGEL – (Pastor)
The Church in Pergamos refers to the state of the church that laid the groundwork for the Catholic system.
This time span was approximately 300AD – 500AD.
Pergamum or Pergamos was the capital city of the province of Asia mentioned in Revelation as one of the seven churches of Asia.
Pergamum was the famous site of the temple to Aesculapius; the Greek God of healing supposed to be the founder of medical science.
The city became the seat of Babylonian sun worship, a noble center of idolatry and demon controlled religions with splendid temples to Nature. People from all over the Roman Empire came to seek healing in this pagan temple and the shrine area was inhabited by thousands of harmless snakes. On the hills of Acropolis stood resplendent buildings, statuary, palaces and the great library as well as the temples and an altar of "Zeus the Savior." Medicine and science was worshipped here and the symbol of their worship was the serpent. The snake was carried down into our own day with a staff entwined with serpents called the caduceus, still using the snake as a symbol for the medical arts; Aesculapius is depicted holding the caduceus in his hand.
Constantine made Christianity the state religion and by doing so acted in the same capacity as Attulus III by giving away the kingdom to the Romans. It was the Roman church however that the blame resides. Constantine was a useful ally; he had stopped the persecutions and did what He could to bring peace to the church by holding an ecumenical council to decide some tough issues that needed to be dealt with. It was not his fault. The persecutions had strengthened the church but the Roman church had already compromised by this time by bringing the Nicolatian errors of the separation of clergy and laity. By destroying the unity and humility of the doctrine of the priesthood of all believers, the pride of lording it over the people stifled the prophetic influence and plunged the church into the dark ages. They compromised further by allowing pagan Roman idolatry to influence their worship.