Summary: Have you left your first love?

Who Do You Love?

Revelation 2:1-7

This past week has been full of love

Folks getting together to celebrate

With food and drink

Sharing stories of past experiences maybe

Lots of smiles and exciting times

A lot of people wearing red even

And this all started long before this week as well

People getting prepared for this special occasion

Making sure everything was just right

Things had to be perfect or else the results could be disastrous

Timing had to be exact

All the people had to be in their proper place

All leading up to that special day

And of course that day is…

Valentines day?

No, that day is today


Today is the 50th running of the Daytona 500

The super bowl of NASCAR

Teams spend nearly the entire off season preparing for this

Months of planning go into each and every aspect of this race

And the fans love it

They come out to watch anything that has to do with Daytona

Hey I admit it, I watched some of the qualifying the other day.

There are no more dedicated fans than NASCAR fans

They love their drivers, and hate the others

See its not even possible to like Mark Martin and Jeff Gordon

I can’t see how anyone likes Jeff Gordon, beside the point


And of course this past week was Valentines day as well

The day of love

Where every guy must prove his love to his woman with jewelry, chocolates, teddy bears, roses, and whatever else they are trying to guilt trip us into on TV

It is a good time to reflect on how much that special someone means to us.

And how much we truly love them.

And just like you might send your sweetie a love letter

John records a letter to be given to the church at Ephesus from Jesus Christ himself

But this letter is not a love letter

Rather , leaving your first love

So let’s read Rev. 2:1-7

According to legend, when pioneers came to the

mainland of Asia minor

being uncertain where to settle, they consulted an oracle which told them

that a fish and a boar would show them the place.

One night, as they were cooking fish, one fell out

of the fire pit with a live coal attached which set fire to some nearby brush.

A boar hiding in the bushes fled in fright but was pursued and killed.

Recalling the word of the oracle, the founders built the city on the spot where they killed the boar.

This was the founding of Ephesus.

Years, decades, and centuries passed and this city became plagued with paganism.

A man named Paul visited and brought hope.

Paul ministered in Ephesus for three years

And warned the Ephesians that false teachers would come

And try to draw people away from the faith

False teachers did indeed cause problems in the church

But the church resisted them

And John also spent much of his ministry in this city

And knew they had resisted false teaching as well.

The purpose of this letter and this message is so important

We need to discover the problem this church had

We need to discern if this problem exists today in our church

We need to discard this problem in pursuit of revival

I. The Position in Which This Church was Found

A. They were Tireless in Service

I know thy works, for my name’s sake you have labored and hast not fainted

Over a long period of time the church at Ephesus had refused to tolerate sin among its members

This was not easy in a city noted for immoral sexual practices associated with the worship of the goddess Artemis.

Consider the trials they endured

It was not exactly a ideal place to be ministering

And their works are mentioned, their good works

Both of ministers and the church

No evil works are mentioned no complaints save one

Christ knows all the works of His people

And He knows whether they are done in obedience to Him

And spring from a love for Him

And He knows if they are performed in His strength and by His grace

And are directed to His glory

And He takes notice of approves of and is well pleased with these works

And these early churches were very diligent in working

They were laborious

The phrase I know thy labor

Is particularly speaking of the labor of ministering the Gospel

The frequent preaching of it, in season and out

In constant administration of the ordinances

And in diligent exercise of church discipline

The work of the ministry is a laborious work to the mind in studying

And to the body in the outward discharge of it

And it becomes more so through the malice and opposition of enemies, and the weakness of friends

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