Message to Pergamum’s Messenger Revelation 2:12-17
3. What the assembly at Pergamum is doing well–
Jesus commended Pergamum for their faithfulness. They remained loyal, continued boldly, holding fast, clinging to Jesus Christ. Never once did they deny Him, not even when Antipas was martyred. They didn’t give in out of fear for their own lives
4. A. Jesus compared the false prophet among the assembly at Pergamum to Balaam.
When the Lord commanded Balaam not to curse the Israelites, he conceived a plan. He reasoned if he could entice Israel to sin, God would stop blessing them. Without God’s protection, Midian could overpower them.
Balaam advised Balak and Midian’s leaders to use the women to draw the Israelite men into idol worship. “While the Israelites were camped at Acacia Grove, some of the men defiled themselves by having sexual relations with local Moabite women. These women invited them to attend sacrifices to their gods, so the Israelites feasted with them and worshiped the gods of Moab. In this way, Israel joined in the worship of Baal of Peor, causing the Lord’s anger to blaze against his people.” Numbers 25:3-4 NLT
The strategy was somewhat successful since God told Moses to have those Baal-worshiping men put to death.
This is a common tactic used by Satan. Solomon had a weakness for women, including some from nations God forbid Israel to marry. Solomon took several foreign wives and built temples for them to worship their gods. He also burned incense and offered sacrifices to them. 1 Kings 11
B. Jesus said He would use the two-edged sword —
The sword of the Spirit which is the Word of God (Ephesians 6:17)—against false teaching.
It sounds like He is saying, “don’t make me come down there.” Not because He was angry with His people, but rather angry with the evildoers. He is seated at the right hand of the Father. When He ascended to heaven, He left us with authority.
“For the word of God is alive and powerful. It is sharper than the sharpest two-edged sword, cutting between soul and spirit, between joint and marrow. It exposes our innermost thoughts and desires.” Hebrews 4:12 NLT
Studying God’s word has shown me He abounds in grace, love and mercy. God didn’t send Jesus to condemn us. He sent Him to show how much He loves us. To set us free from the bondage of sin.
5. Rewards promised to the victorious—
Sacred manna, hidden away in heaven—
Just as God instructed Moses to save two quarts of manna in the ark to remember God’s supernatural provision (Exodus 16:34), God says He has sacred manna hidden in heaven for us.
It is encouraging to know He provides fresh bread to us every day as we seek His face through prayer, worship, and meditating on His Word.
God also provides for our physical nourishment.
A shining, glistening white stone (pebble) inscribed with your new, secret name.
This speaks of a personal, intimate relationship between Jesus and each of His children. How wonderfully precious! Exodus 28:21
I collect stones everywhere. I have several from a visit to Israel. So I’m excited to think and hope it is I hope it is a real stone.
In 1 Peter 2:5, The church is compared to a beautiful temple made entirely of living material from the foundation up. The soul of each believer is a living stone. All are priests, so each “is engaged in offering an acceptable sacrifice to God.” Barnes
In light of 1 Peter 2:5, they would be larger stones, not small as the Greek word indicates.
This new temple built of living stones is a true habitation for the presence of God. He is holy, enthroned in the holy place where praises of Israel are offered. Psalm 22:3
We individually and collectively are the temple of the Holy Spirit. 1 Corinthians 16:19-20
The following theory seems the most relevant (to me), and the most exciting:
In ancient Rome, the victors of athletic events received a white stone inscribed with their name. This stone sometimes granted entry to a special awards banquet.
“According to this view, Jesus promises the overcomers entrance to the eternal victory celebration in heaven. The “new name” most likely refers to the Holy Spirit’s work of conforming believers to the holiness of Christ (see Romans 8:29; Colossians 3:10)” Church in Pergamum