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[Revelation Ch.2: The 7 Churches]

II. Church of Ephesus

     The Ephesian Church was started by Paul on his second missionary journey. Paul had stirred up the city with his dynamic preaching and the response was so positive and overwhelming that the silversmiths created a protest riot. The Ephesian church was one of the largest churches in the area.

     The whole city of Ephesus worshipped the goddess Diana. Its famed temple of Artemis is considered one of the seven wonders of the ancient world.

     Ephesus means "desired one." It represents the Apostolic Church, the most desirable of all church periods.

REV 2:1  ...the seven stars in his right hand, who walketh in the midst of the seven golden candlesticks;

     Christ is ever watchful over His churches. His power and presence are always available to His people.

REV 2:4  Nevertheless I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love.

     This church succumbed to the common temptation of letting the wonderful memory and decision of early conversion become commonplace. Their spontaneous sparkle of love for Christ was no longer there. Most of the Ephesian Christians were second-generation believers. Some 35 years earlier, Paul had praised their great love (Eph. 1:15-16).

REV 2:6  thou hatest the deeds of the Nicolaitans

     The word "Nicolaitans" comes from "niko" (to conquer) and "laos" (people). Early on, there was an effort to set up a system of ecclesiastical rulership, such as bishops, cardinals, popes. But this church evidently was able to withstand ecclesiasticalism, which the Pergamus church later accepted (Rev. 2:15).

REV 2:7  eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God

     The tree first appeared in the Garden of Eden, as forbidden to Adam and Eve. It reappeared in the final scenes of the New Jerusalem--a welcome to all saints. The tree of life is a symbol of eternal life.

 

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