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THYATIRA: The Corrupt Church

Updated: Jun 20, 2022

This series is based on the video produced by Appian Media. Trial & Triumph explores the seven churches of Asia from the book of Revelation. Travel with Jeremy Dehut and watch the video as we explore the seven churches.






Thyatira is a much smaller city than the other cities mentioned in Revelation. However, the letter to this church is the longest of the letters to the churches.

Thyatira was known for its abundant crops and trades, including the manufacturing of purple dyes (see; Acts 16:11-15). The city's commerce was linked to an assortment of religious practices that threatened Christians who lived there.


Revelation 2:18-29 "And to the angel of the church in Thyatira write, ‘These things says the Son of God, who has eyes like a flame of fire, and His feet like fine brass: “I know your works, love, service, faith, and your patience; and as for your works, the last are more than the first. Nevertheless I have a few things against you, because you allow that woman Jezebel, who calls herself a prophetess, to teach and seduce My servants to commit sexual immorality and eat things sacrificed to idols. And I gave her time to repent of her sexual immorality, and she did not repent. Indeed I will cast her into a sickbed, and those who commit adultery with her into great tribulation, unless they repent of their deeds. I will kill her children with death, and all the churches shall know that I am He who searches the minds and hearts. And I will give to each one of you according to your works. “Now to you I say, and to the rest in Thyatira, as many as do not have this doctrine, who have not known the depths of Satan, as they say, I will put on you no other burden. But hold fast what you have till I come. And he who overcomes, and keeps My works until the end, to him I will give power over the nations—

‘He shall rule them with a rod of iron; They shall be dashed to pieces like the potter’s vessels’—

as I also have received from My Father; and I will give him the morning star. “He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.”


Son of God

The title for Jesus, "Son of God" occurs only here in Revelation. Jesus is described one "who has eyes like a flame of fire, and His feet like fine brass". Words that echo back to the description of Jesus in (Rev. 1:14-15). A title and language that may serve to reaffirm the Deity of Christ.

Jezebel

Although this small church seems to be growing and excelling in good works of love, service, faith, and patience, they are also allowing themselves to be seduced by "Jezebel."


Jezebel is a symbolic name, a name that was associated with idolatry. Jezebel was the name of "King Ahab's queen, who introduced idolatry into Israel and threatened the continued existence of true religion (see 1 Ki 16:29–32; 2 Ki 9:22)."(1) Seen through the eyes of the Son of God, her teaching, compromise, and worldliness was infecting the hearts and actions of Christians at Thyatira.


Hold Fast

The encouragement for the church is to "hold fast." Jesus warns about being overcome by the cares of this world in (Matt. 13). The distractions of the world can choke out Christian so that our lives become unfruitful. Tied up in trade commerce and idolatry, the Christians of Thyatira ran the risk of becoming unfruitful and unproductive.

Matthew 13:22 "Now he who received seed among the thorns is he who hears the word, and the cares of this world and the deceitfulness of riches choke the word, and he becomes unfruitful."

James warns about compromise. Christians cannot be a friend of the world and have a love of God at the same time. "Whoever therefore wants to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God." (James 4:4b). Through the various trade guilds, Christians in Thyatira were challenged to compromise.

To those who hold fast and do the will of the Lord to the end, these shall share in the glory of Christ as those who triumph over evil.


Considering Thyatira


Are there areas of our life where we maintain a "friendship" with the world?


 

Unless otherwise noted, Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.


1. George R. Beasley-Murray, “Revelation,” in New Bible Commentary: 21st Century Edition, ed. D. A. Carson et al., 4th ed. (Leicester, England; Downers Grove, IL: Inter-Varsity Press, 1994), 1430.


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