Summary: How does the church of Philadelphia compare to our church? 6th in the series of the Seven Churches of Revelation.

To the Church of Philadelphia

In this series on the Seven Churches of Revelation, we have examined the Churches in Ephesus, Smyrna, Pergamum, Thyatira and Sardis. Today we will examine the Church of Philadelphia and not only how our church compares to it, but also how we as individual Christians compare to the Christians in Philadelphia.

Let’s stand as we read God’s Holy Word:

Rev 3:7-13

7 "To the angel of the church in Philadelphia write: These are the words of him who is holy and true, who holds the key of David. What he opens no one can shut, and what he shuts no one can open.

8 I know your deeds. See, I have placed before you an open door that no one can shut. I know that you have little strength, yet you have kept my word and have not denied my name.

9 I will make those who are of the synagogue of Satan, who claim to be Jews though they are not, but are liars-- I will make them come and fall down at your feet and acknowledge that I have loved you.

10 Since you have kept my command to endure patiently, I will also keep you from the hour of trial that is going to come upon the whole world to test those who live on the earth.

11 I am coming soon. Hold on to what you have, so that no one will take your crown.

12 Him who overcomes I will make a pillar in the temple of my God. Never again will he leave it. I will write on him the name of my God and the name of the city of my God, the new Jerusalem, which is coming down out of heaven from my God; and I will also write on him my new name.

13 He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.



The City:

Philadelphia was founded by the citizens of Pergamum to create a gateway to the central plateau of Asia Minor. This city was often damaged by earthquakes, which resulted in a fear that kept a large part of the population from living within the city walls. Today there still exist a town on the ancient site of Philadelphia called Alasehir in Turkey, having a population of around 15,000. The word Philadelphia comes from two Greek words: PHILEO, which means, "love" and the word ADELPHOS, which means "brother." Thus the name Philadelphia means "brotherly love."

The Condemnation:

Christ had no condemnation for this church. This church appears to be a small church, but one that is obeying the teachings of Christ. The church of Philadelphia, as the name implies, must have loved one and another, even their enemies. There must have been a continuous revival going on. Do you think Christ would have any condemnations for our church? If so what would they be?

The Introduction:

Rev 3:7

7 "To the angel of the church in Philadelphia write: These are the words of him who is holy and true, who holds the key of David. What he opens no one can shut, and what he shuts no one can open.


Christ addresses himself as holy and true. Being holy means that Jesus has the character of God and that He has no sin in His life. Jesus is perfect and righteous. Being true means that every word that He speaks is the true word of God and that every promise He made will be kept. We can put all of our trust in Jesus Christ for He is perfect and trustworthy. He will never leave us nor forsake us. He will always be with us through whatever trail we may go through. Christ is holy and true.

Christ holds the key of David. The only other place where the key of David is referred to is in the book of Isaiah.

Let’s read:

Isa 22:20-22

20 "In that day I will summon my servant, Eliakim son of Hilkiah.

21 I will clothe him with your robe and fasten your sash around him and hand your authority over to him. He will be a father to those who live in Jerusalem and to the house of Judah.

22 I will place on his shoulder the key to the house of David; what he opens no one can shut, and what he shuts no one can open.


Eliakim, the son of Hilkiah, was given the key to the house of David during the reign of King Hexekiah. The key was carried on a cord hung over the shoulder and the key unlocked the house of David which contained all the treasures of the kings of Judah and also housed the government. So Eliakim controlled who could come into the house of David and also who could not. He had the authority to do so. Jesus in the same sense holds the key to the New Jerusalem that is coming when he returns. Christ holds the key; thus He controls who gets in and who does not. There is no one else who can open or close this door. Christ has the authority to say who will enter the kingdom of God. No one comes unto the Father except through Christ.

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