3. Summary of Comparisons of the Seven Churches

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  1. The Church in Ephesus (Rev 2:1-7)

The members of the Church in Ephesus not only revealed the deceivers who belong to Satan but also worked hard and patiently to shine the name of Jesus. Most importantly, however, they lost the first love and the things they did at first, showing a situation of imminent danger in which, without repenting, the lampstand of God would be removed from its place.

Current Status: The church that lost the first love and the things they did at first.

  1. The Church in Smyrna (Rev 2: 8-11)

The Church in Smyrna is a church that has been put to the trial by Satan by the interference of the Jews, the synagogue of Satan, who called themselves the chosen ones. The believers, however, showed a strong desire about the word of eternal life even during the times of poverty and depletion of the spiritual word.

Also, it fortells that when some of those who merely repeat the elementary teachings of God and fail to reach the whole measure and fullness of Christ, recognize the afflictions of the reality of the spiritual prison, they can join in the symbiotic community of those who overcome. And they will become rich with truth and receive the crown of life.

Current Status: They have fallen into trial by Satan but have spiritual thirst.

  1. The Church in Pergamum (Rev 2:12-17)

The Church in Pergamum is where the throne of Satan was. As Jesus revealed the signs of the end of the world, he told the readers to understand when you see standing in the holy place ‘the abomination that causes desolation’ (Mt 24:15). Pergamum is a place in which Satan who leads the whole world astray (Rev 12:9) deceives in the name of God and take control of the people of God with clever pretense of spreading God’s words like Balaam.

Though they definitely refer to the Bible even today and fluently preach God’s words to show that they follow them wholeheartedly, the secularized church leaders (Mt 23:16-18) whose actions are directed by a desire for materials and authority are said to the Nicolaitans following the teachings of Balaam (Jude 1:11-13).

Current Status: They call themselves arbitrators between God and his people but allow the Nicolaitans who are following the teachings of Balaam who turn believers into blinded followers with a strong desire for materials and authority.

  1. The Church in Thyatira (Rev 2:18-29)

The Church in Thyatira is overflown with things of deeds, love, faith, service and perseverance. However, as it allowed the deceit of a self-proclaimed prophet (Eze 13:17-23) symbolized by Jezebel, a woman who was not to be tolerated (1Ki 16:29-33/1Ki 21:1-16) because she deceived and committed sexual immorality, the Church befriended the spirit of deceit and ultimately left God as it embraced the Mormonism of the world and corrupt authority and escaped from the essence of faith (Jas 4:4)

Also, the servants of God did not repent their routine immoral acts and ate together the sacrifices for the idol due to greed, one  of the worst kinds of idolatry in the revelation times (Col 3:5). Therefore, it predicts that, in the end, they will be thrown into great afflictions.

Current Status: By tolerating a self-proclaimed prophet, Ethbaal, they pursued  the secularization with aims for authority, superstitious elements and the privatization of the church.

  1. The Church in Sardis (Rev 3:1-6)

The Church in Sardis looked fine on the outside but, inside, was filled with those who have gone away from the truth due to their unwholesome acts, those who live with decent positions and names but are spiritually dead; the spirits of its members became dark as well. Here, the people who have living names but are dead are those who pursue uncharacteristically overflowing respect, complacency and vanity (1Ti 5:6), who spread them to other believers who must reach the whole measure of the fullness of Christ, (Eph 4:13-16) and who prevent them from bearing any fruit being choked by life’s worries, riches and pleasures and from becoming mature (Lk 8:14).

Though the Church in Sardis was a weak church whose deeds were not sound, a few who washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb (Rev 7:14) were together with Jesus in righteousness, which did not dirty the robes.

Current Status: The church was full of those with living names but who are dead spiritually but also had a small group of believers in white robes who walked with Jesus.

  1. The Church in Philadelphia (Rev 3: 7-13)

The Church in Philadelphia is the only church out of the seven churches that completely suppressed the synagogue of Satan with brotherly love.

The synagogue of Satan is a group of those who call themselves Jews who look like chosen people and legitimate people but are not truly chosen people and only liars. The church is consisted of believers who made the synagogue of Satan submit and received an abundance of Jesus’ grace.

It is a non-denominational symbiotic community of the brothers who overcame the synagogue of Satan by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony and who did not love their lives so much as to shrink from death (Rev 12:11), and also of the saints who overcome with patient endurance and obey the revealed faith to the end (Rev 14:12). Also, it is a holy place of God, Jesus and the name of the new Jerusalem in the revelation times (Rev 3:12/Isa 18:7).

Current Status: Even with little strength, the complete church that did not betray the name of Jesus overcame the synagogue of Satan and avoid the trial in the end time.

  1. The Church in Laodicea (Rev 3:14-22)

The Church in Laodicea is the church rebuked because its members are neither cold nor hot. It is faced with a situation in which they are hearing the word of a powerful warning that God will cast away from salvation those who are lukewarm and neither hot nor cold if they do not break peace with Satan (Rev 6:4), repent and obey God with earnestness.

God points out that, even if those deceived by Satan call themselves rich and say that they have acquired wealth and do not need a thing, they are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind and naked, looking from the spiritual perspective.

And they must repent, open the door of their hearts, wear the white robe of salvation through refinement removing impurities and dross like pure gold refined in fire (Job 23:10/Isa 1:22-27/Eze 22:17-22), pursue the spiritual wealth following the word of Jesus’ prophecy and not show the shameful nakedness  (Rev 19:8).

Also, he warns them, by buying and putting salve on their eyes, they must open up their spiritual vision and see clearly those who are deceived by Satan who invaded the church.

Current Status: The rebuked church that is arrogant in its wealth and lukewarm in its attitude of faith, and whose spiritual vision is closed and that only puts Christ outside the door.

Also, Revelation Chapters 2 and 3 write in detail about the 12 fruits borne towards the everlasting life given to the believers.     It is summarized as follows.

12 Fruits of the One who overcomes toward Eternal Life         

(12 Fruits of the New Covenant)                                                           

 -Jesus’ Revelation

1. Fruits of the Tree of Life :  “He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God.” (Rev 2:7):(Ge 3:22-24/Rev 2 2:14)

2.  The Crown of Life :  “be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life.(Rev 2:10):(1Th 2:19/Php 4:1/Jas 1:12/Rev 12:1)

3.  Shall not be hurt of the second death :  “He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; He that overcometh shall not be hurt of the second death.” (Rev 2:11):(Rev 20:6/Rev 21:8)

4.  The hidden manna :  “He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the hidden manna,” (Rev 2:17):(Rev 10:9-11)

5.  A white stone :  “and will give him a white stone, and in the stone a new name written, which no man knoweth saving he that receiveth it.” (Re v2:17):(Zec 3:9/1Pe 2:4-5)

6.  Authority over the nations :  “And he that overcometh, and keepeth my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations:” (Rev 2:26):(Rev 12:5)

7.  The morning star : “And I will give him the morning star.” (Rev 2:28):(Rev 22:16)

8.  Dressed in white : “He that overcometh, the same shall be clothed in white raiment;”(Rev3:5):(Isa 61:10/Rev 3:18/Rev 7:9-14/Rev 19:14)

9.  Will never blot out his name from the book of life : “and I will not blot out his name out of the book of life, but I will confess his name before my Father, and before his angels.”(Rev3:5):(Ps 69:28/Php 4:3/Rev 20:12-15/Rev 21:27)

10. A pillar in the temple of my God : “Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God,” (Rev 3:12):(Rev 21:16-17/Isa 26:1/Isa 60:18)

11. Will write upon him the name of my God, new Jerusalem and my new name : “I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name.” (Rev 3:12):(Isa 62:2-5/Isa 65:15-17/Rev 21:9-10/Isa 18:7)

12.  Grant to sit with Jesus on his throne : “To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne.” (Rev 3:21):(Jer 3:17/Rev 21:7/Lk 22:28-30)

Here, first of all, the Tree of Life from which gifts of fruits had already appeared in Genesis (Ge 2:8-9) but the access to it was restricted due to the disobedience of Adam and Eve (GE 3:22-24). However, it shows up again in Revelation in which the servants of God eat the fruits of the Tree of Life and taste the incredible blessings reaching the eternal life. Like this, Gensis and Revelation, the beginning and the new beginning, are connected to each other.

With related verses, the mutually supplementary elements between Gensis and Revelation are shown as follows.

<Ge 3:22-24>                                                                                                                                         22  And the LORD God said, Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever:                                                                                                                                                 23  Therefore the LORD God sent him forth from the garden of Eden, to till the ground from whence he was taken.                                                                                                                24  So he drove out the man; and he placed at the east of the garden of Eden Cherubims, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to keep the way of the tree of life.

<Pr 3:18>                                                                                                                                               18  She is a tree of life to them that lay hold upon her: and happy is every one that retaineth her.

<Rev 2:7>                                                                                                                                                7  He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God.

<Rev 22:14>                                                                                                                                           14 Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city. Like this, Genesis and Revelation, the beginning and the new beginning, are connected to each other.

<Comparison between Genesis and Revelation regarding Tree of Life>

Genesis Revelation
The beginning of the Bible      (First Beginning) End of the First Beginning                      – the New Beginning
Temptation of Satan (Ge 3:1-24) Fall of Satan – the ultimate victory of Christ (Rev 20:1-3/Rev 20:10)
Restrictions and sadness resulting from disobeying God’s laws and the beginning of death (Ge 3:14-24/Ge 4:1-12) Forgiveness of sins as well as the end of tears and death (Rev 21:1-7)
Forbiddance to access the Tree of Life (Ge 3:22-24) The blessings of eternal life from eating the fruits of the Tree of Life (Rev 2:7/Rev 21:3-4/Rev 22:14)
Beginning with the first covenant (Ge 1:26-29) Bearing fruits with the new covenant (Rev 1:3/Rev 22:1-7)
Disobedience of men, which resulted in incomplete relationship with God – immature relationship (Ge 3:8-24) Completion of the relationship with God – mature relationship (Rev 21:3-7/Rev 22:1-5)
First Adam and the Garden of Eden (Ge 2:15-25) New Jerusalem (1 Co 15:44-58/Rev 21:2/Rev 21:10-27)
The beginning of the Bible – first heaven first earth (Ge 1:1-31) The completion of the Bible and the new beginning – new heaven new earth (Rev 21:1-7)

Also, the Bible is the book that records the process to obtain wisdom for the sons and daughters of God to reach the Tree of Life through the grace of Jesus Christ who, in the Revelation times, restored the path of eternal life, which was blocked by God in Genesis due to the sins of Adam and Eve.

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