Summary: Christians are to possess courage in moments/instances of fearful apprehension. Courage for the apprehensive(Christian) is found in The Comfort of ...
COURAGE FOR THE APPREHENSIVE—Revelation 2:8-11
Jesus encouraged the Smyrnan church as they faced the certainty of mortal/lethal/deadly persecution.
Christians are to possess courage in moments/instances of fearful apprehension.
Where does Christian courage arise during apprehensive moments?
6 comforts for courageous Christians in the apprehension of deadly persecution.
1—Courage for the apprehensive Christian is found in the
Comfort of FIRSTFRUITS(:8b)
:8—“And to the angel of the church in Smyrna write: The first & the last, who was dead, & has come to life, says this:”
“To the angel”—This angel is answerable to/responsible for/ the happenings within his particular body of Christ in Smyrna...Therefore the angel is the pastor &/or the collective eldership within Smyrna.
Exporter of MYRRH, ‘A bitter, resinous gum producing an aromatic extract crushed & used as an unguent & in perfumes for enbalming.’ Antiseptic & Anesthetic to deaden pain.
‘Street of Gold/the Gods’—Temples to Cybele/Sybil, Apollo, Asklepios, Aphrodite, Zeus(Jupiter), & Roman Emperors.
“First & the last”—Jn. 1:1;
Title Isaiah uses for God the Father
“Who was dead”—Crucifixion & burial
“& has come to life”—Resurrection(Easter)
Rev. 1:17-18—Glorified Christ told John...“Do not be afraid; I am the first & the last, & the living One; & I was dead, & behold, I am alive forevermore,...”
Heb. 7:25—“Hence, also, He is able to save forever those who draw near to God through Him, since He always lives to make intercession for them.”
Jn. 11:25-26—“Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection & the life; he who believes in Me shall live even if he dies, & everyone who lives & believes in Me shall never die. Do you believe this?””.
1Cor. 15:20, 22-23—“But now Christ has been raised from the dead, the first fruits of those who are asleep.”....“For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ all shall be made alive. But each in his own order: Christ the first fruits, after that those who are Christ’s at His coming,”
Early settlers/Trail blazers/Regardless of dangers& hardships forged a life/Comfort of FIRSTFRUITS
?You found Courage in the Comfort of Jesus’ FIRSTFRUITS?
?You found Courage in your most Apprehensive moments?
2—Courage for the apprehensive Christian is found in the
Comfort of RICHES(:9a)
:9—‘I know your tribulation & your poverty (but you are rich),...”
Jn. 16:33—“These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you have tribulation, but take courage; I have overcome the world.”
“Poverty”—Absolutely destitute—NOT lacking a TV in each room or driving a Ford instead of a Lexus.
Lk. 6:20—“And turning His gaze on His disciples, He began to say, “Blessed are you who are poor, for yours is the kingdom of God.”
Lk. 12:16-21—“And He told them a parable, saying, “The land of a certain rich man was very productive. “And he began reasoning to himself, saying, ‘What shall I do, since I have no place to store my crops?’ “And he said, ‘This is what I will do: I will tear down my barns & build larger ones, & there I will store all my grain & my goods. ‘And I will say to my soul, “Soul, you have many goods laid up for many years to come; take your ease, eat, drink & be merry.”’ “But God said to him, ‘You fool! This very night your soul is required of you; & now who will own what you have prepared?’ “So is the man who lays up treasure for himself, & is not rich toward God.””
“But you are rich”—Poverty stricken outwardly but nonetheless “rich” in Christ.
Eph. 3:8-12—“To me, the very least of all saints, this grace was given, to preach to the Gentiles the unfathomable riches of Christ, & to bring to light what is the administration of the mystery which for ages has been hidden in God, who created all things; in order that the manifold wisdom of God might now be made known through the church to the rulers & the authorities in the heavenly places. This was in accordance with the eternal purpose which He carried out in Christ Jesus our Lord, in whom we have boldness & confident access through faith in Him.”
Rev. 3:17-18—Laodicea—“ ‘Because you say, “I am rich, & have become wealthy, & have need of nothing,” & you do not know that you are wretched & miserable & poor & blind & naked, I advise you to buy from Me gold refined by fire, that you may become rich, & white garments, that you may clothe yourself, & that the shame of your nakedness may not be revealed; & eye salve to anoint your eyes, that you may see.”
Mat. 13:45-46—“Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant seeking fine pearls, & upon finding one pearl of great value, he went & sold all that he had, & bought it.”