Summary: This is a study of the church of Pergamos in the book of Revelation. This is a controversial subject but takes a conservative approach to understanding the book.
Note: I used many sources to study this book, one of my favorites is Revelation: God’s Word for the Biblically-Inept by Daymond Duck and some out of different study bibles.
Ephesus-church of the departed love
Smyrna-church of fiery persecutions
Pergamos-(meaning marriage) church of world alliance
Known for learning, refinement, and science especially medicine. Had a library of over 200,000 books. Known for its idolatry worship. Worship to Aesculapius. The worship of Christ was usurped in medicine and Satan worship. Notice as we read these passages the many references to Satan and his worship. Christ was lowered. They even went as tar as calling Aesculapius, Preserver and Savior.
Age AD 313 Constantine ruled. A combination of church and state. Christianity was the official state religion.
12. And to the angel of the church in Pergamos write; These things saith ge which hath the sharp sword with two edges;
what do we learn from scripture is sharper than any two edged sword? (Jn.. 5:22,.27; Heb 4:13) This would make more sense as we read on we will find that Pergamos was full of tolerating error and false doctrine. What else is needed to correct false doctrine but the Word of God.
13 I know thy works, and where thou dwellest., [even) where Satan's seat (is): (throne)
Shows his usurping of world power. The prince of this world. Pergamos was known for its Emperor worship. Worshiping their leaders as god's as they sit on their thrones. Also there was the worship of Athena, Caesar Augustus, Dionysus, Askelpios, Hadrian and Zeus.
Jesus says he knows where they are. He knows the condition of the city. He knows the persecution. He knows all. He is in control no matter what is going on. Thank God he knows where I am. He knows what is around me and he is protecting me by his word
and thou holdest fast my name, (325 AD Council of Nicea settled an debate of the name of Christ and His deity) and hast not denied my faith, even in those days wherein Antipas [was] my faithful martyr (witness), who was stain among you, where Satan dwelleth.
They were persecuted and it seems that all the odds were against them but they did not deny their faith in Christ.
14 But I have a few things against thee, because thou hast there them that hold thc doctrine of Balaam who taught Balac to east a stumblingblock before the children of Israel, to eat things sacrificed unto idols, and to commit fornication.
In this we see that there are a few things that Jesus says they have done wrong. It is more on what they allowed and less on what they had done physically.
Two groups were allowed to teach and persuade the people. 1) Balaam 2) Nicolatians
1) Balaam is a popular person m scripture. Old and New Testament. We first find turn in the book of Numbers (22-24). You may not recognize the name but I believe you would recognize his story. Remember in scripture when the donkey talked. The man had beat him and beat him. for not moving but standing still. Unknowingly to Balaam God had sent a death angel in which only the donkey could see until it was revealed to Balaam.
Also we see that he was suppose to curse Israel under the order of Balak but every time he opened his mouth God would cause him to bless them. So he devised another plan That was to infiltrate them with women of other cultures and introduce idol worship .Moses refers to this in Num. 31:16.
It seems that the church was having the same problem. 2 Peter 2:15;: Jude 11 mentions him. It is a compromising religion. As I have said before Satan would have people playing Christianity and living in this world than to have sinners.
Stumblingblock-a trap, as set by Balaam for Israel.
This leads to practicing with other religions. Maybe to just get along and not cause fuss which leads to out right sin. Such as fornication a common practice in idol worship.
15 So hast thou also them that hold the doctrine of the Nicolaitians which thing I hate.
2) NicolationsCommon quote of the Nicolations was “What one does with the body does not affect the soul”
Jesus was not pleased because they looked over these people. He knew that all it took was a little yeast to work through the whole batch of dough.
Your glorying is not good. Know ye not that a little leaven leaveneth the whole lump? (1 Corinthians 5:6 AV)
Compromise is wrong and it leads to total control of sin.
Nicolaitians first mentioned earlier in the chapter under the church of Ephesus.. The years have changed and also the times. In Ephesus the Nicolaitians were hated but in Pergamos they were lined up and obeyed.