This church and age is representative of the Dark Ages which was in the clutches and domain of the now long established Roman Catholic Church. The name Thyatira literally means ‘continual’ or ‘perpetual sacrifice’. A fitting description of the Roman Catholic doctrine of the error of transubstantiation, the continual sacrifice of the Mass where the priest blesses the wafer and the cup of wine which are said and are taught to become the real body and blood of Christ. Instead of the ‘once for all’ that the scriptures teach, we have our Lord Jesus Christ resacrificed on catholic altars week in and week out. The laity (the people) were only allowed to partake of the wafer and only the priests or clergy could drink the wine in communion less the blood be accidentally spilled. So once again we see that the error of the Nicolaitan doctrine goes on.
In verse 18b the description of Messiah is taken from Revelation 1:14-15 which shows us that only the Son of God is to be worshipped, not Mary nor images of anything else. This description of our Lord shows us His authority and judgment through His eyes and voice.
Key verses: Revelation 2:18-29.
This is in verse 19 where the faithful remnant is commended for their works, love and faith, ministry and patience. The Lord states that these works are more than the first and so there is an increase.
This is found in verses 20-23 and involves the rebuke of allowing or tolerating the teaching of a woman called Jezebel. There may have been a woman who was called this but it is more likely to relate to the teachings of Jezebel of the Old Testament. Just as in the last church Pergamum the teaching of Balaam was condemned as still prevalent. Both of these false doctrines involved the worship of foreign gods which leads to spiritual idolatry and sexual immorality among believers. Jezebel shows us a very real and true picture of what the Roman Catholic Church evolved into during this period, which when compared with Scripture bears little resemblance to the New Testament Church.
Jezebel’s judgment is in verses 22-23 where she and her followers will be cast into Great Tribulation which is a reference to the end times when the harlot woman (false Christianity) rides the beast! Her children (followers) are to be judged with violence and death at this time.
This is in verses 24 to 25 and relates to those who are not part of the Jezebel system who do not know the deep things of Satan and so we must view the Roman Catholic Church as Satan’s counterfeit. The faithful remnant is told to ‘hold fast’ to what they have until their Lord comes. This is a prophetic word unto those of the last days within this Dispensation of Grace.
This is found in verses 26-29 and is twofold towards those who are overcomers and listen to what the Spirit expressly says to the churches. Firstly, they will reign and rule with Christ over the nations on the earth for a 1,000 years. We can cross reference this promise with Revelation 5:10 and 20:4-5. Secondly, they will be given the Morning Star and again in comparing and contrasting the scriptures we can go to Revelation 22:16 to see who the bright and Morning Star is. At the end of the day true born again believers and disciples will have the possession of Christ who is the Way, the Truth and the Life. (John 14:6).
1) Justification by works and not simply by grace faith which is a gift from God – Eph 2:8.
2) We are saved through Baptism instead of this being simply an ordinance of obedience.
3) The worship of images, relics, icons. Beads and crosses used publicly and privately.
4) Confession – the priest absolves sins whereas only the Lord can.
5) The Mass – the concept of the continual or perpetual sacrifice of Christ.
6) Purgatory – a place of refinement which is neither Heaven or Hell and the scriptures know of no such place!
7) Penance – a way of afflicting oneself to lessen time in purgatory.
8) Indulgences – another way of reducing your time in purgatory through giving money!
9) Mariolatry – the worship of the Virgin Mary and prayers to her as co-mediator with Christ.
10) Celibacy – priests forbidden to marry (a further distinction between clergy and laity).
Dozens of other erroneous teachings were added in over the centuries relating to the Pope and the Bishops of Rome. For centuries the Bible was banned or burned and when they could not stop its publication and public reading Rome set about belittling scripture with higher and lower theological criticism as well as deliberately changing the Word of God to suit their false system of religion.
God will not be mocked and so the Lord raised up the Reformers, many of whom were catholic priests who came out to be separate and so the Great Reformation began and the next church called Sardis shows us this. The truth sets one free just as our Lord promised. He also promised to build His Church and the gates of Hell would not prevail against it. Amen.
Date : 30/11/-0001