The Church that Dwelt where Satan's throne is.
To the Angel of the Church of Pergamum write: The words of him who has the sharp two-edged sword (Rev 1:16).
I know where you dwell. Pergamum was full of worship. Put not to the One True God. There were temples and worship for "the divine Augustus", the goddess Roma, Asklepios (the god of healing), and Zeus. Being a Christian in this atmosphere would not be easy at all. To stand firm and resist, while also facing persecution, would surely test one's faith.
Yet you hold fast to my name, and do did not deny my faith (even amidst persecution of others, Antipas).
What Christ has against this church:
- You have some there who hold the teaching of Balaam, who taught Balak to put a stumbling block before sons of Israel, so that they might eat food sacrificed to idols and practice sexual immorality.
- You have some who hold the teaching of the Nicolaitans.
He says REPENT! If not HE will come and war against them with the sword of HIS mouth. We are to speak out against these falsehoods. Just like when scripture says "if they keep quiet, the stones will cry out", Christ will come and do what he says he will do, but Whoa to him who was not obedient in his task. There are many within the church today that allow things to go on, that should not only be stopped, but should be dealt with, with godly discipline. So much is allowed to seep into the conscientiousness of the church and soon explained away. Never to be made right. Godly discipline is seen as intolerance. But Christ will take care of it once for all. He does not leave us without a task though. REPENT, Stand Firm, Speak Truth from God's word (a Sharp double edged sword Hebrew 4:12), Do not allow sin to weaken the church.
He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches: To the one who conquers (overcomes, over powers, triumphs) Christ will give some of the hidden manna , and He will give him a white stone, with a new name written on the stone that no one knows except the one who receives it.
Interesting note on the white stone: Historically a white stone was given to victors at games for entrance to banquets (can you say The Great Banquet); such a stone was also used by jurors at trials to vote for acquittal. We are given our invitation and acquittal, by Christ himself, and our new name is known only to ourselves and him! Doesn't that just excite you?! A secret between you and your LORD!
Indeed, let us not stand for anything false that will try to infiltrate the church. Speak out, do not remain silent.