THE MASTER’S VESSEL MINISTRIES, HOUSTON, TEXAS
Preacher: Pastor Uche Emenike
Topic: The Messages to the churches
Text: Revelations 1:9-11; 2:1-7
- We live in uncertain times and current events point to the coming of the Lord. Covid-19 has exposed the vulnerability of churches in a nation as free as America. Suddenly, in some states, it is becoming illegal to meet even in house churches.
- The body of Christ must be prepared in such a time as this as the Lord has asked whether He would find faith on the earth when He comes back – Luke 18:8.
- Through the apostle John, Jesus left some messages for the seven churches of the Roman province of Asia Minor, which is present day Turkey. The churches are in Ephesus, Smyrna, Pergamos, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia, and Laodicea.
- The messages show that Jesus has not abandoned His church because He has gone to heaven. He is still interested in His body on earth and will correct her when necessary.
- Such messages have a great implication for the entire body of Christ as well as the individual Christian.
Relevance of the Messages
- It is directly addressed to the churches concerned.
- It is also addressed to the larger body of Christ for all time as tests to know whether they are walking in the way God wants them to walk. Churches are able to discern their true spiritual state.
- It is addressed to the individual child of God as per Rev. 2:7
- It is also prophetic in nature as the deeds, actions, and failures of these churches will be repeated over and over again in centuries to come until Jesus comes again. The warnings and punishments from God will also be realized.
Content of the Messages
- As we shall see later, the messages to the churches go beyond the local assemblies mentioned. The messages reveal the different stages that a church, and indeed the individual, can go through. They shall speak to a regular church, a church under persecution, a church that is unequally yoked with the world, a church that practices idolatry, a church that is dead even though it thinks that it is alive, and a church that remained faithful to her calling. They even speak to a church that has gone into apostasy and become useless to the Lord.
- If these messages are preached more in our churches today, they will replace the “feel good” messages we hear that never produce Christ-like character and which ultimately cause us to lose our testimony with the world. According to John Walvoord, “Many of the problems and evils that exist in the church today are a direct outgrowth of the neglect of Christ’s instruction to these seven churches.”
- Each letter to the churches comes with seven parts with few exceptions: The Commission, Character, Commendation, Condemnation, Correction, Call, and Challenge.