Summary: Revelation 2-3 provides a performance review for seven churches. How would we measure up? What does Christ think of this church?

Dr. Roger W. Thomas, Preaching Minister

First Christian Church, Vandalia, MO

Memo to the Church—2

Revelation 3

Here’s the church . . . here’s the steeple, open up and..

Common thinking: building, institution ---- people

Group of Christian people who meet together on the first day of the week to encourage one another and work together to further their God given mission.

Dangers of independent church … no accountability … how are we doing

What’s the bishop think?

A spiritual audit . . .

Rev 1-3: Intro and seven memos--

Seven real places with principles

History panorama??? Common sense reading

Rev 2-3 is the Supervisors Performance Review; follows the format exactly

The Right/Authority to Make the Review;

Good points;

Problem areas;

Changes needed;

Incentives (negative and positive)

Chapter two: 4 churches—one that remained firm but lost its first love

A second that remained faithful in the midst of adversity

Another that struggled with compromise in a tough place One that had stood against sin, but now had found it more convenient to go along with it, even welcome it into its midst.

The final three churches in the third chapter all contain a reversal of conventional wisdom. Jesus verdict was just the opposite of what most people thought, even those in those churches. These last three provide a sobering wake up call every church tempted to self-satisfaction:

The Dead Living Church

The Strong Weak Church

The Poor Rich Church

1. (#5 of 7) The Walking Dead Church (Rev. 3:1-6)

(Rev 3:1-6 NIV) "To the angel of the church in Sardis write: These are the words of him who holds the seven spirits of God and the seven stars. I know your deeds; you have a reputation of being alive, but you are dead. {2} Wake up! Strengthen what remains and is about to die, for I have not found your deeds complete in the sight of my God. {3} Remember, therefore, what you have received and heard; obey it, and repent. But if you do not wake up, I will come like a thief, and you will not know at what time I will come to you. {4} Yet you have a few people in Sardis who have not soiled their clothes. They will walk with me, dressed in white, for they are worthy. {5} He who overcomes will, like them, be dressed in white. I will never blot out his name from the book of life, but will acknowledge his name before my Father and his angels. {6} He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.

The Night of the Living Dead . . .

The old horror movie; zombies and mummies walking stiffly;

Opposite pix here

Dead man walking---book and movie of death row prisoner

All Is Not As It Appears . . . the theme in the seven letters; heaven’s view point

How Can Life and Death Be So Confused? a biblical truth . . .

(1 Tim 5:6 NIV) But the widow who lives for pleasure is dead even while she lives.

(Eph 2:1-6 NIV) As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, {2} in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient. {3} All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our sinful nature and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature objects of wrath. {4} But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, {5} made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions--it is by grace you have been saved. {6} And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus,

(2 Cor 6:9-10 NIV) known, yet regarded as unknown; dying, and yet we live on; beaten, and yet not killed; {10} sorrowful, yet always rejoicing; poor, yet making many rich; having nothing, and yet possessing everything.

(Gal 2:20 NIV) I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.

What Makes A Individual/Church Dead or Alive?

Let’s define church.....not building, not organization, not denomination (RC, no bishop, no church), not a crowd, ---at least two poeple believing in Jesus from the heart, devoted to one another and God; to God’s purposes; and empowered by the Holy Spirit.

What’s a church dead . . . dead individuals Clovis Chapel: mirror in casket

(2 Tim 3:5 NIV) having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with them.

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