Summary: This is a study of the church of Sardis 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.
Title: How to overcome the deadness
Theme: To show how the Sardis church was and Jesus' answer
Text: Rev 3:1-6
Ephesus-Apostolic Age to 100 AD Church of the departed love
Smyrna-Martyrdom Age 100 to 314 AD Church of fiery persecution
Pergamos-World Alliance 314 to 590 AD Church of world alliance
Thyatira-Dark Ages 590 to 1000 AD Church of Rome
Sardis- 1517-1800 AD Church of the Spiritually Dead
Famous church leaders-Martin Luther, John Calvin, John Knox.
1. And unto the angel (messenger(pastor)) of the church in Sardis write; These things saith he that hath the seven Spirits of God, and the seven stars; I know thy works, that thou hast a name that thou livest, and art dead.
Seven is the number of fullness or perfection. "Seven Spirits of God" is the fullness of the spirit. Who has this Spirit? Jesus. It is Jesus who sent him. The Spirit does all things to lift up the son.
Who has the stars? (the angels of the church) so the destiny of the church is in the hands of Jesus.
"I know" Jesus knows all. There is nothing that is hidden before the Lord.
Known as the attribute called Omniscience of God or "all knowing"
Proverbs 5:21 For the ways of man [are] before the eyes of the LORD, and he pondereth all his goings.
Proverbs 15:3. The eyes of the LORD [are] in every place, beholding the evil and the good.
What is meant by the phrase "that thou hast a name that thou livest, and art dead"?
How can a church pretend to be alive but dead? Can this happen in a Pentecostal church
2 Be watchful (wake up)(constant state of watching) Mark 13:35,37 , and strengthen the things which remain, that are ready to die: for I have not found thy works perfect before God.
Matthew 24:42 Watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come.
43 But know this, that if the goodman of the house had known in what watch the thief would come, he would have watched, and would not have suffered his house to be broken up. 44 Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh.
What makes a work perfect before God? to be led by the Holy Spirit.
3 Remember therefore how thou hast received and heard, and hold fast, and repent. If therefore thou shalt not watch, I will come on thee as a thief, and thou shalt not know what hour I will come upon thee.
5 Steps to Revival
1. Be watchful
2. Strengthen the things which remain
4. Hold Fast
4 Thou hast a few names (remnant) even in Sardis which have not defiled their garments; and they shall walk with me in white: for they are worthy.
a few names-there have always been a remnant in Israel. When the scepters speak of the rebellion of the Israelites it does not mean all but there were a few who stood their ground. There will always be this in the church.
have not defiled their garments-this could be internally and externally
5 He that overcometh, the same shall be clothed in white raiment; and I will not blot out his name out of the book of life, but I will confess his name before my Father, and before his angels.
He that overcometh-Overcomers repeated again. The reward is:
not blot out his name-some say this is a roll kept on all and if they do not accept him then their name is blotted out. But I believe that it is talking about what the Ephesian church did, it is a lost love.
white garments Swete says," In scripture white apparel denotes (a) festivity . . . (b) victory . . . (c) purity . . . (d) the heavenly state. All these associations meet here: the promise is that of a live free from pollution, bright with celestial gladness, crowned with final victory."
“but I will confess his name before my father”
Matthew 10:32-AV Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven. 33 But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven
6 He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches.
Hear, Hear. When do we hear?
The reason for the reformation was not because of what the preachers or priests was saying but because people began to listen to the Word and the spirit. In the word there is life, truth, life. It changed their perspective. If we listen to God’s spirit and his truth he will bring about a revolution.
3 R’s of the Bible
Remember Repent and be Righteous
Rev. 2:5,3:3 Luke 13:3 1 Tim 6:11,12