Getting to Know Jesus: Revelation 3

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In the Revelation of Jesus Christ, revealed to John on the island of Patmos, Jesus spends chapter 2-3 verbalizing what John is to write to the seven churches in Asia Minor. Scattered across the Anatolia Peninsula (or present day Western Turkey) these seven churches include Ephesus, Smyrna, Pergamum, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia, and Laodicea, originating in part because of the influence of Paul’s missionary journeys within the region. As Jesus speaks to these churches specifically in this book, these churches ultimately typify the large swath of churches that have existed since the time of the early church and still remain today. Christ’s appraisal, instruction and affirmation of these churches extends to all churches for all time and should be considered seriously when evaluating the livelihood of a congregation or body of faith.

Similarly, these exhortations should be considered individually as well. As we get to know Jesus in Revelation chapter 3, it is clear that Jesus remains aware of our spiritual condition. Just as he spoke to these churches in Asia Minor, who possessed strengths and weaknesses regarding their faith, so Jesus also speaks into our lives regarding where we are at in our relationship with Him. Through His Holy Spirit, we are made aware of the true contents of our hearts. Sometimes this can be a rather ugly picture, just as the church in Laodicea was reprimanded for being “lukewarm” or indifferent in their faith. But this can also inspire change in us if we obediently respond to the call to pursue Jesus.

Reading this passage in Revelation chapter 3, I can see various areas in my own life where my faith is either frail or flourishing. Because of this, I’m finding it is extremely important to be open to reprimand and consultation for the sake of spiritual growth. As we desire to grow more like Christ, we must recognize our own tendencies to fail spiritually while asking God to help us, but also recognize the areas where we are flourishing spiritually while giving thanks to God for His grace to do so and His grace to sustain us.

When we consider that Jesus does indeed notice our faith it should compel us to pursue Christlikeness passionately and purposefully.

Revelation 3 reveals Jesus as the One who sees all but still cares enough to admonish His followers out of love. He alone possesses knowledge regarding the deepest parts of our hearts. And He longs to cleanse us. But we must be attentive to Him. His words of matter. Only His words. His opinion regarding where we are at in our faith matters. His opinion regarding our spiritual lives matter. Everything He has to say to us matters. Letting Him expose us to our own sinful tendencies so that we may confront them is imperative in growing more Christlike.

Without this refining we are susceptible to grow complacent, or even lukewarm like the church in Laodicea. And that is just not a good place to be. Let us elevate our view of Jesus Christ so that we may receive His words with honor and anticipation of His glorious beauty revealed. Jesus has a word He wants to speak to our hearts today. May we have ears to hear and hearts receptive.

Summary of Revelation 3

Jesus speaks to John, who is exiled on the island of Patmos and receives a vision from the Lord about the last days; Jesus instructs John to write a letter to the angel of the church in Sardis; Jesus tells them that He knows their activity and reputation, yet he exposes them as being dead, not alive in the faith; Jesus tells them they must repent; Jesus acknowledges that there are a few at the church in Sardis who have not soiled their garments with dead faith; Jesus instructs John to write a letter to the angel of the church in Philadelphia; Jesus tells them He has given them an open door that remains open and no one can shut; Jesus notices their faith and endurance despite their weakness; Jesus reminds them that He is coming soon; Jesus instructs John to write a letter to the angel of the church in Laodicea; Jesus rebukes them for being lukewarm; Jesus says He will spit them out of His mouth if they remain this way; Jesus offers them gold refined by fire, white garments to cleanse themselves, and eye salve so they may see; Jesus tells them He disciplines those whom He loves; Jesus says that He waits at the door knocking and will come to whoever opens the door to Him; Jesus will allow the one who conquers to sit on His throne with Him just as His Father allowed Him to sit with Him on His throne; Jesus extols them to listen.

 

Jesus in Revelation 3

Jesus instructs the church in Sardis (v. 1-6)

Jesus speaks with authority (v. 1)

Jesus knows their works (v. 1)

Jesus is aware of their reputation among the community (v. 1)

Jesus sees beneath reputation (v. 1)

Jesus sees them for what they truly are (v. 1)

Jesus is aware of their spiritual condition (v. 1)

Jesus points out the discrepancy between what others perceive of them and who they truly are (v. 1)

Jesus always perceives our hearts (v. 1)

Jesus exhorts them to wake up (v. 2)

Jesus exhorts them to strengthen what remains (v. 2)

Jesus warns them that what remains is about to die unless it is dealt with (v. 2)

Jesus does not find their works complete in the sight of God (v. 2)

Jesus admonishes for the sake of their renewal (v. 2)

Jesus rebukes because He cares (v. 2)

Jesus reminds them to remember what they have heard and been taught (v. 3)

Jesus urges them to repent (v. 3)

Jesus wants to forgive them (v. 3)

Jesus will come against the unresponsive (v. 3)

Jesus will come like a thief at an unknown hour (v. 3)

Jesus recognizes those in Sardis who have remained faithful (v. 4)

Jesus will walk with the faithful ones in white (v. 4)

Jesus calls these few ones worthy (v. 4)

Jesus bestows honor (v. 4)

Jesus will cloth the one who conquers in white garments (v. 5)

Jesus cleanses (v. 5)

Jesus will never blot out the names of the one who conquer in the book of life (v. 5)

Jesus’ love is unconditional (v. 5)

Jesus will confess their names before the Father and His angels (v. 5)

Jesus urges them to listen to these words (v. 6)

Jesus acknowledges the Holy Spirit as the one who is inspiring these words to the churches (v. 6)

Jesus works in tandem with the Holy Spirit (v. 6)

Jesus display the interrelation of the trinity (v. 6)

Jesus instructs the church in Philadelphia (v. 7-13)

Jesus is the holy One (v. 7)

Jesus holds the key of David (v. 7)

Jesus controls the access into the kingdom (v. 7)

Jesus authority cannot be overridden by anybody (v. 7)

Jesus is powerful (v. 7)

Jesus knows their works (v. 8)

Jesus gives them an open door (v. 8)

Jesus knows that they have little power (v. 8)

Jesus is aware of their weaknesses (v. 8)

Jesus notices they have kept His word (v. 8)

Jesus notices they have not denied His name (v. 8)

Jesus recognizes them for their faithfulness (v. 8)

Jesus sees all (v. 8)

Jesus perceives all (v. 8)

Jesus will condemn those who lie about who they are (v. 9)

Jesus does not tolerate deceitfulness (v. 9)

Jesus will display His love toward His own (v. 9)

Jesus affirms those He loves (v. 89

Jesus notices they have endured patiently (v. 10)

Jesus will spare them from the hour of trail coming to the world (v. 10)

Jesus will try those who dwell on the earth (v. 10)

Jesus will bring justice (v. 10)

Jesus is coming soon (v. 11)

Jesus’ return is a literal expectation (v. 11)

Jesus urges them to hold fast to what they have that no one may seize their crown (v. 11)

Jesus will make the one who conquers a pillar in the temple of God (v. 12)

Jesus will write on the one who conquers the name of His God (v. 12)

Jesus will write on the one who conquers the name of the city of His God (v. 12)

Jesus bestows one’s identity (v. 12)

Jesus calls the city of His God the new Jerusalem (v. 12)

Jesus describes the new Jerusalem coming down from God out of heaven (v. 12)

Jesus will write on the one who conquers His own new Name (v. 12)

Jesus urges them to listen to these words (v. 13)

Jesus instructs the church in Laodicea (v. 14-22)

Jesus is the Amen (v. 14)

Jesus is the faithful witness (v. 14)

Jesus is the true witness (v. 14)

Jesus is the beginning of God’s creation (v. 14)

Jesus knows their works (v. 15)

Jesus observes they are neither cold nor hot (v. 15)

Jesus wishes they would at least be either cold or hot, not lukewarm (v. 15-16)

Jesus will spit them out of his mouth (v. 16)

Jesus despises halfhearted faith (v. 16)

Jesus wants all or nothing (v. 16)

Jesus knows they think they have enough without Him (v. 17)

Jesus exposes their frailty and false sense of security (v. 17)

Jesus counsels so that they might find life (v. 18)

Jesus offers gold and white garments (v. 18)

Jesus offers salve to anoint their eyes so they will see (v. 18)

Jesus wants them to be made whole (v. 18)

Jesus reproves and disciplines those whom He loves (v. 19)

Jesus possesses parental concern (v. 19)

Jesus cares about our spiritual condition (v. 19)

Jesus exhorts them to be zealous and repent (v. 19)

Jesus desires for them to be saved through Him (v. 19)

Jesus stands at the door and knocks (v. 20)

Jesus will come to anyone who opens the door to Him (v. 20)

Jesus is available (v. 20)

Jesus is accessible (v. 20)

Jesus will grant the one who conquers to sit with Him on His throne (v. 21)

Jesus has conquered and sat down with His Father at His throne (v. 21)

Jesus bestows royal privileges (v. 21)

Jesus bestows honor (v. 21)

Jesus urges them to listen to these words (v. 22)

Jesus is persistent (v. 22)

“Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me.” –Revelation 3:20 –

Questions for Today:

  • How often do I evaluate my heart?
  • Am I confronting spiritual weaknesses in my life that need to be dealt with?
  • How do I respond to Jesus when He reveals things in my heart that need to be dealt with?
  • Why is it significant that Jesus disciplines those He loves?
  • What next step is Jesus asking me to take in my relationship with Him today?

“Anchor” by Hillsong Worship

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