August 27, 2021
Scripture: “Remember, then, what you received and heard. Keep it, and repent. If you will not wake up, I will come like a thief, and you will not know at what hour I will come against you.” Revelation 3:3 ESV
Observation: Sardis (located about 30 miles southeast of Thyatira in this circuitous path of the seven churches) is modern-day Sart. Well fortified by its acropolis, Sardis thrived in commerce throughout its history. Yet, despite its wealth and its reputation as a city of peace, as William Barkley notes, it was an anesthetized peace: “the peace of the man whose dreams are dead and whose mind is asleep, the peace of lethargy and evasion.”
Takeaway: Given the period between John’s revelatory letter (mid 90’s AD) and when the Gospel reached this region (mid 50’s AD), about forty years had passed since the previous generation embraced the good news. The second generation was now resting its laurels on the active faith of its forefathers. Here, Christ warns the church to wake up from their spiritual slumber, repent from their self-indulgent lifestyles, and live out their faith in Christ or else face judgment at their death.
Prayer: Father God, in your mercy, awaken us when we rest our security and peace on anything other than your Son and his gospel message. Help us not to become complacent but live out our faith in a manner worthy of a child of God. Amen.
Rev. Gordon Green, M.Div., M.A. Counseling