Saying, I am Alpha and Omega, the first and the last: and, What thou seest, write in a book, and send it unto the seven churches which are in Asia; unto Ephesus, and unto Smyrna, and unto Pergamos, and unto Thyatira, and unto Sardis, and unto Philadelphia, and unto Laodicea (Revelation 1:11 KJV)
The book of Revelation is a compilation of prophetic revelations an angel gave to John from the Lord Jesus and addressed to seven Churches in Asia minor. Those seven Churches were: Ephesus, Smyrna, Pergamos, Thyatira, Sardis, and Philadelphia. What do these seven Churches mean to you and me today?
These were real churches in the province of Asia Minor, and the messages to the Churches were addressing real things these churches were dealing with. In those days, messages and letters were delivered through a Courier traveling by foot or possibly through a horse to deliver them. The seven churches are listed in the order a courier would travel by foot or horse from Patmos, where John had the vision to deliver the messages.
Furthermore, there were other Churches in Asia minor besides these seven listed Churches such as Troas and Colosse. Jesus selected just seven, which is an indication that it is a prophetic number representing the whole Church. Though these specific churches were chosen, Jesus was speaking to the entire Church at that time and, more importantly, to you and me today. The end is close; pay attention to the encouragements, inspiration, and especially the warnings.
Think of the symbolic meaning of 7, as noted above. It would not have been feasible for Jesus to address every local Church and so He used the number seven to address the entire Body.
APPLY THE WORD
If Jesus sends a message to your local Church or to you today, what do you think He would say? What would He commend and praise in you or your local Church or rebuke? Continue the good work and give heed to His rebuke or corrections.
Ask the Lord to help you hear and do what the Spirit is saying to the Churches.
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