Richard Ritenbaugh provides introductory information to his ensuing series on the letters to the seven churches in Revelation 2 and 3. Letter-writing, as a means of communication, became highly formalized in the Greco-Roman world. The Scriptures contain a . . .
Christ prepared the members of Smyrna for martyrdom, promising them eternal glory for enduring a relatively short time, looking at things from a hopeful perspective.
The Ephesus church effectively battled various heresies, for which Christ commends it. However, the members lost sight of the reason, having left their first love.
Cultural compromise, such as found in Pergamos, brings judgment from Jesus. To those who refuse to compromise their convictions, Christ promises eternal life.
The seven churches of Revelation 2-3 have intrigued Bible students for centuries. Where they simply seven churches in Asia, or do they have more immediate relevance to us today?
Historically, the modern church of God has believed that the seven churches are types of seven eras from apostolic times to Christ's return. Is this a valid belief?
The seven churches exist in the end time, but is there hope for a bright future? What will happen next in the course of events? Will the church—now scattered—come back together?
Christ's first letter to the churches focuses on the Ephesians, a people who succeeded in trying the spirits, but in the interim left [their] first love.
The Philadelphia church is often considered the best of the seven. Is it? Does it have any faults? Are we biased in our judgment?
John Ritenbaugh explains the seven thunders and the little book of Revelation 10. This chapter serves as an inset, not following the time sequence of Revelation, but explaining in detail events necessary to understand more fully what is happening within it. . .
Thyatira, the middle of the seven churches, receives a litany of praise and rebuke from our Savior. He particularly focuses on idolatry, which is spiritual fornication.
Christ severely criticizes the church of Pergamos for its problems with the doctrine of Baalam and idolatry. Nevertheless, to those who overcome these sins, He will grant eternal life!
John Ritenbaugh, reminding us to take God's words seriously, cautions that all His words have great depth, having far more applications than appear on the surface. His word unfolds in layers, like the peeling back of an onion skin. After the upheaval and d. . .
John Ritenbaugh provides compelling evidence that remnants of four out of the seven churches will be extant at the time of Christ's return. The inset chapters of the book of Revelation are digressions which give clarity to the sequential events. Revelation. . .
John Ritenbaugh, clarifying our worldview with respect to the Israel of God (or the Church) in the context of eschatological (that is, end times) events, declares that our vision of our calling as well as our level of responsibility before the imploding of. . .
John Ritenbaugh reiterates that biblical history substantiates that God does not always have the church perform the same functions continually, but sometimes drastically alters the course according to needs and conditions. The perceived detours are necessa. . .
John Ritenbaugh reiterates the emotional state of the American people, especially those who understand the seriousness of the times, averring his conviction that they will never see good times again, but will fall more and more into a permanent condition o. . .
John Ritenbaugh, reflecting on the concept of church eras prevalent throughout the Worldwide Church of God, asserts that Herman Hoeh in his historical studies found a common link in doctrines and practices of groups from the apostolic times to the present,. . .
John Ritenbaugh, revisiting Herman Hoeh's brilliantly reasoned, through highly speculative, doctrine about Church eras, takes a hard look at the biblical evidence and concludes that the notion of eras is based on some fundamental errors. Because Revelation. . .
John Ritenbaugh, reflecting upon the breakup of our former fellowship into hundreds of pieces, examines the prospects for future unity. God gave His approval for the destruction of our prior fellowship into myriad splinter groups, allowing heresies to emer. . .
Back in my college days, one of my roommates was continually bemused by the football fanatics who identified with their team so closely that they would speak in the first person. ...
David Grabbe, examining the implications of Isaiah 22:15-11, maintains that many major splinters of the greater Church of God have misunderstood the context of this passage which describes Shebna's expulsion from his role as Steward because of his blatant,. . .
The letters in Revelation 2 and 3 are for the end times, shortly before Christ's return. Each emphasizes repentance, overcoming, and judgment according to works.
The concept of power brings many different ideas to mind, any and all of which may certainly be valid. David Grabbe, however, concentrates on the 'little strength' of the church of the Philadelphians, suggesting that Christ commends them for being '. . .
John Ritenbaugh, after a thorough analysis of the seven churches in Revelation 2 and 3, concludes that the seven conditions described (all having a common denominator an admonition to hold fast to something once given, but slipping away- namely the faith o. . .
God promises certain Christians that He will keep them from the Tribulation—the "hour of trial." Here are the characteristics of those whom God will protect.
The biblical city of Smyrna may be one that many know the least about. The city's name reveals the themes that the Head of the church wants us to understand.
John Ritenbaugh reiterates that neglecting to feed the flock has been detrimental to preaching the gospel to the world. Because of this unwitting neglect, many members succumbed to the "lost in the crowd" syndrome, feeling insignificant, meaningl. . .
David Grabbe, reminding us that a major focus of John the Baptist's ministry was a call to repentance and turning to righteousness, a focus that Jesus Christ and the Apostle Paul reinforced and magnified. Curiously, in main-stream Protestantism, repentance. . .
Success in spiritual things does not consist in growing large and powerful, but humbly living by faith, overcoming, and yielding to God's shaping power.
God has the ability to protect and save in a variety of methods. The Scriptures reveal various purposes for intervention, protection, and prudent escape.
John Ritenbaugh reminds us that God is not in the torturing business but in the creating business, using calamities as part of His creative process. As Jacob's spiritual descendants or the Israel of God, we possess some of the same faithless proclivities a. . .
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