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The Church of Philadelphia: Then and Now
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Christ dictated seven letters to seven churches of Asia Minor and the Apostle John wrote them down and sent them to the churches, as is recorded in Revelation, chapters 2 and 3. To each church, Christ had a specific message. He still does.

Jesus introduced himself to the church of Philadelphia (Rev. 3:7-13) by saying he is holy, true and is the one who holds the key of David, meaning he is the one who grants entry and access into the royal household of God, like David, who ruled over the kingdom of Israel.

Christ then told the church he had set before them an open door of opportunity that no one could shut. This must have been a great encouragement to this group of Christians, who, although they were not large in number nor a strong church, had faithfully kept God's word and not denied his name.

Christ assured the Christians of Philadelphia that there were those who were opposing them, namely the Jews, who were "liars," and Christ would make them to come and fall down before the Christian church and admit the love Christ had for the Gentiles, and not only for the Jews.

Not everyone in the church today is what they claim to be. There are fakes, imposters, opponents of what Christ is truly trying to accomplish for his glory. One day, every knee will bow and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is truly Lord.

Because these Christians had been faithful, Christ told them He would keep them from the hour of trial that is going to come upon the whole world to test those who live on the earth. This undoubtedly refers to the time known as the great tribulation, which is yet in the future, but is getting very near.

This will be a time of unprecedented trials and troubles on earth, and a large part of the book of Revelation describes what will happen during those perilous and terrible years.

Christ said he was coming soon and encouraged these faithful Christians to hold on to what they had, so no one would take away their crown of victory.

Then Christ promised that for those who would overcome, he would make them a pillar in the temple of God, to where they would never have to leave that temple. He would also write on them the name of

God, the name of the city of God - the new Jerusalem, and his own new name, a symbol of ownership.

Then, in his usual style, Christ calls on those who have ears to really hear what the Spirit is saying to the church through his letter.

Today we, like the Christians in Philadelphia, have been given a wide open door of opportunity to spread the gospel of Christ and see lives changed for eternity. We too, must be faithful and hold on to what we have and not get discouraged. Jesus is coming soon. The pieces of the end-times prophetical puzzle are coming together, and the Great Tribulation will come to pass.

Take heart and be encouraged by Christ's letter to the church of Philadelphia.