Friday, May 18, 2007

The Seven Churches: The Truth in Pergamum

We're continuing through the seven churches. The city of Pergamum was another thriving metropolis and city of some import in Asia Minor at the time. Its history was a rollercoaster of prestige through the ages. At the time of Revelation, it was a great center of imperial worship as well as having temples to several gods, including Asklepios (healing), Dionysus, Athena (goddess of victory & patron of the city), and Zeus. Persecution would arise primarily because of the imperial cult (Caesar worship), not because of the popular gods [Grant Osborne, The Book of Revelation (BECNT) 139].

Do you ever think, “God doesn’t get my world”? That He can’t relate to 21st century young adult culture? How? (I know you know the correct answer, theologically, but where does it seem that He doesn't?)

What images does “the sword” bring to mind?

What’s the significance that Jesus knows where they live?

What role does Satan play in all of this? (Eph. 2.1-2; Jn. 12.31; Lk. 10.18; Rev. 12.7-12; Col. 2.15; Gen. 3.15)

What does Jesus have against the church in Pergamum?

How does this problem seep into the church today? What does it look like in the church today?

What does “repent” mean?

What is the biblical image of “the sword of my mouth”? (Isa. 49.2;
Eph. 6.17; Heb. 4.12). How does it help with the challenges Pergamum-ites and we
face?

What does v. 17 mean? (Hint: there's a million views, but like the end of the last few "letters" to the churches, life is promised to those who endure.)


Application
What aspect of our culture most challenges Christians?

How are you doing in letting “God’s Word” be your guide in our culture?

What will you do this week to navigate culture with more wisdom?

1 comment:

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