Summary: Study five of the Book of Revelation.
Pergamos – The Indulged Church which was married to the world.
Pergamos represents the Church Age between AD 314 – 590. The church has become a state church and it began to move away from the person of Jesus Christ.
October 28, AD 312, Constantine heavily outnumbered charged the imperial army of Maxentius at Saxa Rubra (“Red Rocks”) nine miles north of Rome. Maxentius was forced to fight with his back to the Tiber River, where the only retreat possible was over the narrow Milvian Bridge. Constantine’s’ men routed Maxentius’ armies, forcing those which were left to retreat to Rome. Thousands of soldiers, including Maxentius himself, perished in the waters of the Tiber.
Constantine’s victory over Maxentius changed the course of history for Christianity. Property confiscated by Diocletian’s reign from churches during the persecutions was ordered returned to them. One of the first actions of Constantine was to issue the Edict of Milan in AD 313, which not only confirmed the religious toleration of Christians but also extended it to include adherents to all faiths.
To settle controversy, in AD 325 Constantine summoned bishops in every corner of the empire to join him at what would be the first – and most famous – general council of the Christian church, the Council of Nicaea. Here the first council adapted the churches first creed formally presided over by Constantine himself.
Christianity had, in its triumph over paganism, found its voice, and Constantine as its official spokesman was more committed now than ever to Christianizing the empire of Rome.
Pergamos is a city in Turkey, which today is called Pergamum.
Pergamos was one of the royal cities of Asia Minor. Pergamos was the capital of the kingdom of Pergamum. Smyrna was the commercial center; Ephesus was the political center as Pergamos was the religion center of Asia Minor.
The acropolis still stands in Pergamum, though it is now in ruins.
The ruins of her great temples are still located atop the acropolis.
There is a great healing spa found here.
Caesar Augustus came to this beautiful area when the climate got cold in Rome.
In this royal city there a temple built to Caesar Augustus.
Pergamum was a fortified stronghold built off the great trade routes, which came out of the orient.
It was built on a mountain, and the acropolis dominated the whole region of the Caicus plain.
The original city was built between two rivers, which flowed, into the Caicus high above the banks on rocky cliffs.
Pergamos boasted the largest library of the pagan world. Its walls contained over two hundred thousand volumes. Later, Cleopatra, as a gift from Mark Anthony, lugged off the entire contents of the library to Alexandria in Egypt.
There are two great temples found in Pergamos.
The temple to Dionysius, which is beside the ruins of there great theatre.
Dionysius is the same as Bacchus, the God of wine, the goat-god.
He is depicted with horns, but his upper part is man and the lower part a goat.
Satan is still the God of liquor.
The other temple is for the god Asklepios.
This was the largest and greatest hospital of the ancient world.
The Greek god Asklepios was a man however the oriental Asklepious, Anatolian, is a serpent.
The temple has large tunnels with holes that look like ventilation shafts but are not. As you walk along these tunnels, soothing voices come through the holes, saying to you, “you are going to feel better. You are going to get well. You are going to be healed.” Then you go down to the hot baths where you are given a massage. After that, you are entertained at the Temple Theater where they give plays on healing. If they haven’t healed you by now, as a last resort they put you in the temple at night and turn loose nonpoisonous snakes, which crawl over you. They don’t mention the ones they don’t heal; they speak only of those who recover. They also had a back door where they took out the dead.
Caesar Augustus loved to go to this temple. He was an alcoholic and he came here every year to dry out.
This was a great hospital that people came to from all over the world for over 700 years. Healing, however, in these times was nothing but satanic.
The Letter to Pergamos.
The Commission – And unto the church in Pergamos…
The Character – These things saith he which hath the sharp sword with two edges.
The Word of God has the answer for mans sin, which in Pergamos was false religion.
It was the center for pagan religion and the only way it could be reached is with the Word of God.
The Commendation - The Lord commends this church for three very definite things.