Warning and Reward

In the book of Revelation, the Apostle John wrote down the words of Christ as he spoke them in a vision to John. The revelation is addressed to the seven churches in Asia as John wrote from the island of Patmos where Jesus had come to him in a vision.

Jesus speaks to the seven churches, but in chapter 2, we see that there are four to whom he speaks initially: Ephesus, Smyrna, Pergamum, and Thyatira.

As Christ addresses each of these churches, we see some recurring themes. To me, I think that what I have noted the most is the contrast between the warnings and the reward.

From the perspective of the warnings, I see Christ calling his church to remain faithful and continue burning hot in their faith to him and for him. Jesus is calling his church to leave the prevailing culture behind, to leave the evil of worship of other “gods” through eating foods sacrificed to them and to sexual “worship” by having sex with prostitutes at the temple.

Nevertheless, I have a few things against you: There are some among you who hold to the teaching of Balaam, who taught Balak to entice the Israelites to sin so that they ate food sacrificed to idols and committed sexual immorality.

Revelation 2:14

So we see that Jesus is patient with his people and patient with his church. But he also gives them warnings that they will be judged for their evil, and they will be punished for what they have done.

However, on the other hand, Jesus will also give the possibility to come to God through him. He will also give them eternal life. Life with God forever.

Whoever has ears, let them hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To the one who is victorious, I will give the right to eat from the tree of life, which is in the paradise of God.

Revelation 2:7

Jesus says that they will have the right to eat from the tree of life. This is the same tree from which Adam and Eve were mercifully banished in the Garden of Eden so that they would not live forever in their sin under the judgment of God. In God’s paradise, which will be given to those who are victorious, Jesus will allow them to eat from the tree of life, giving them life forever with God.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *