Christ's reprimand of the Ephesian church, "You have left your first love," seems odd being said to a church that appeared so busy doing God's will.
The Ephesians had a strong sense of duty and served as a vanguard in the battle against false doctrines. What was lacking was devotion to Christ.
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.
Richard Ritenbaugh, cuing in on Matthew 23 and 24, suggests that Matthew is in the habit of presenting Jesus' teachings on a given topic all in one place in the Bible, presenting the teachings from a decidedly Jewish point of view, demonstrating the ability of Jesus to thwart the insidious challenges of the Pharisees, as well as …