This week we continue our sermon series ‘The seven churches of Revelation’. Preaching from Alan Cole. Service led by Richard Sills.
Pergamum – the church that compromised
The church was a light in a dark city (v13). Pergamum was a city known for its practice of the occult and where dark forces were ranged against the young church. Yet in this dark situation the church was a light – it retained its faith even in the midst of persecution. We are also called today to be a light in an increasingly darkening world and to bear faithful witness to Jesus Christ. Matthew 5:14-16.
The church had compromised with the world (V14/15). Sometimes Satan attacks the church directly with persecution, but history proves that this often only makes the church stronger. More often he seeks to weaken the church by making Christians doubt God’s word. Satan’s very first words in Genesis 3:1 were “Did God really say?” The problem with the church in Pergamum was that they believed that as Christ had forgiven their sins they could behave as they liked and so compromised with the world. Both the teaching of Balaam (v14) and the doctrine of the Nicolaitans (v15) taught sexual freedom – that sex outside of marriage and in particular homosexuality was no problem. The church faces the same challenges today. These practices are hateful to Jesus (Revelation 2:6). See also Romans 1:24-27; Romans 6:1-4;11-14; Matthew 5:19; 1 Corinthians 6:9-11;
God will reward those who remain faithful to Him (v17). If we remain faithful to God’s word then He promises “hidden manna”. Manna sustained the Israelites in the desert, but Jesus provides comfort and spiritual sustenance to His church. John 6:35 and a heavenly reward Matthew 5:12.
Sermon Title: The church that compromised
Bible Reading: Rev 2:12-17 (Pergamum)
Preacher: Alan Cole
Worship Leader: Richard Sills