A Last Word on the Seven Churches

“The mystery of the seven golden lampstands is this…they are the seven churches.”  (Rev. 1:20)

  • These believing communities become the context for our lives of faith.  It is not possible to have Christ and exclude His Church.
  • There is not one local assembly, but seven.  No church exists apart from an understanding of Christ, yet no church has a complete understanding of Christ.  Each church possesses only one aspect of the vision of the Christ as seen in Rev.1:12-16.
  • Listening to the eternal Word is the common task of the churches.  They come together deliberately with the purpose of uncovering their ears so that God’s Word can be understood and obeyed.
  • Between the opening identification of Christ and the concluding call to listen, the message to each church involves an affirmation and recognition of obedience.  It also includes a sobering correction, and concludes with a motivating promise of an image of eternal life.
  • This spiritual direction trains us to live a life of confident faith in a hostile environment.  This transformation takes place as we learn how to love others, respond to suffering, obey the truth, manifest holy and genuine lives, engage in mission, and become fervent worshippers of God.
  • These churches are family rooms, not show rooms.  There is to be no idealization of the Church.  Our history has been revealed, and we are challenged to consider the legacy we will leave in our wake.  A random selection of seven churches in the present day would probably reveal similar results.




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