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The Seven Churches

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#1
GlidingWings

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Recently I have read of the Seven Churches in the Book of Revelation. I can see God is giving these Churches instructions to what God is pleased to what they have done. And those things that God Holds against them. Finally letting them know they should repent and will receive The Crown of Life.

But I have these questions to help me to understand better what is going on.

How did John end up on the Island of Patmos? Why do you think John was chosen to be the messenger to write the Book of Revelation among all of God’s first 12 disciples?

Who are these 7 Churches actually? What part of Asia is this? Do these Churches still exist? In what time of History were these Churches being written to?

How do these 7 Churches fit in to Revelation End Time Bible Prophecy? Do these places still exist now or just used as an example?

#2
Bluefinger

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Recently I have read of the Seven Churches in the Book of Revelation. I can see God is giving these Churches instructions to what God is pleased to what they have done. And those things that God Holds against them. Finally letting them know they should repent and will receive The Crown of Life.

But I have these questions to help me to understand better what is going on.

How did John end up on the Island of Patmos? Why do you think John was chosen to be the messenger to write the Book of Revelation among all of God’s first 12 disciples?

Who are these 7 Churches actually? What part of Asia is this? Do these Churches still exist? In what time of History were these Churches being written to?

How do these 7 Churches fit in to Revelation End Time Bible Prophecy? Do these places still exist now or just used as an example?


I think that the letters to the seven churches were written before the Romans and Jews went to war in 66 CE. I think that Revelation chapter 12 tells the story of how John got to Patmos. It tells of the remnant of Israel in exile, (Gen. 37:9-10, Micah 4:9-10) being oppressed by Gentile empires (the dragon), and being persecuted for their faith (Dan. 8:10-11) by Antiochus IV Epiphanes. She gave birth to the Messiah, whom was caught up to heaven. After that, she (the elect remnant) fled to the wilderness (outside the country, to the Gentiles.) Then the dragon makes war in heaven, which on earth looks like the Romans persecuting the disciples specifically, calling them Christians. (Rev. 12:10-11)

It shows that they overcame Satan by the blood of the Lamb and did not love their lives even unto death. This is the first time Satan is mentioned in the book. What it is actually doing is referring back to Job, where Satan tempts Job by sending him all kinds of plagues to get try to get him to curse God. But Job remains faithful. In the same fashion, the disciples were being persecuted for their faith throughout the empire, and even in Rome, but they remained faithful.

So, John was on Patmos Island because he remained faithful to Christ. It seems like the Romans had found all the leaders of the Church and either killed them (like Peter and Paul) or were about to kill them (like John; Matthew 20:20-23.) Revelation 12 also shows that, after the persecution had ended, the dragon pursued the woman by means of a flood. Here, the serpent is used, and then the dragon. The use of the word serpent looks back to the Garden of Eden, concerning cunning deception. In this case, false prophets and false christs made their way throughout Judea, trying to rally support for the war against Rome. At this point, the elect (144,000 sealed) fled Judea as Jesus told them to (Luke 21:20-21) and brought the Gospel to the Gentiles. That is the significance of the seven churches of Asia-Minor: They were the places the elect fled to.

So the messages to the seven churches were messages to the elect and those that came to believe in Jesus because of them.

Notice that in Revelation 1:3, John says: "Blessed is he that readeth, and they that hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written therein: for the time is at hand."

What was about to happen was that Judea was going to go to war with Rome. John was given these messages on Patmos Island to send out to the disciples at the seven churches encouraging them to obey Christ's commands (despite Judaizers) and hold to the testimony of Jesus' salvation (despite Caesar.) The end of the Jewish nation was at hand, and the elect needed to know about it and to be prepared to be persecuted for not joining along. At the same time, the Times of the Gentiles were at hand, so the newer converts needed to know what they would face in the future for their faith (Revelation 12:17, chapter 13.)

That's my take on it.

#3
nebula

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Sorry I didn't notice this before. I feel a bit surprised there haven't been more responses?

How did John end up on the Island of Patmos?


Patmos Island was a prison. For some reason he was sent to prison rather than executed for proclaiming Jesus (like the other Apostles and other Christians).


Why do you think John was chosen to be the messenger to write the Book of Revelation among all of God’s first 12 disciples?


He was the only one still alive.

The Lord may have had other reasons, but those I wouldn't know.


Who are these 7 Churches actually?


I'm not sure what you are asking. They were the Congregations meeting in those 7 cities. (Back then, as you may know(?), there was only one "church" in each city.)


What part of Asia is this?


Present day Turkey.


Do these Churches still exist?


The ancient cities no longer exist. I do not know what happened to the Congregation of Believers over the years.


In what time of History were these Churches being written to?


Late first century.


If you have time, there was an interesting documentary filmed, by a Christian organization, on the 7 Churches of Revelation. I found what I've seen of it very interesting.

http://www.dod.org/P...ts/DOD2313.aspx

#4
nebula

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How do these 7 Churches fit in to Revelation End Time Bible Prophecy? Do these places still exist now or just used as an example?


That is a very loaded question, and open to debate. There are different ways I am familiar with these 2 chapters in Revelation being interpreted.

Some people see these as church-age eras. Ephesus represented the original collective body of believers. Smyrna represents the era of Christian persecution by the Romans, and so on. By this interpretation, we are now in the age of Laodecia.

Another interpretation sees each of the 7 representing general strengths and weakness expressed by any body of believers - which one most fits your congregation, or even your own personal life? As such, which warning do you need to head?

Those are the two most common interpretations.

#5
Bluefinger

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Recently I have read of the Seven Churches in the Book of Revelation. I can see God is giving these Churches instructions to what God is pleased to what they have done. And those things that God Holds against them. Finally letting them know they should repent and will receive The Crown of Life.

But I have these questions to help me to understand better what is going on.

How did John end up on the Island of Patmos? Why do you think John was chosen to be the messenger to write the Book of Revelation among all of God’s first 12 disciples?


I think he was put there during the reign of Nero. I think that he was the last of disciples to be killed. Peter and Paul were killed in Rome. I think that he also was chosen so that the disciples that had fled Judea before the war could get word on what to do while they were in the foreign lands.

Who are these 7 Churches actually? What part of Asia is this? Do these Churches still exist? In what time of History were these Churches being written to?

I believe it was in 66 CE. I think the disciples that fled Judea before the war had fled to those seven cities and brought the Gospel with them.

How do these 7 Churches fit in to Revelation End Time Bible Prophecy? Do these places still exist now or just used as an example?


I struggle with the possibility of them being both literal churches and representations of seven Church Ages.




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