Genesis Key

What About Thyatira?

Jesus' Warning to the Church at Thyatira

Revelation 2:18 And unto the angel of the church in Thyatira write; These things saith the Son of God, who hath his eyes like unto a flame of fire, and his feet [are] like fine brass;
Revelation 2:19 I know thy works, and charity, and service, and faith, and thy patience, and thy works; and the last [to be] more than the first.
Revelation 2:20
Notwithstanding I have a few things against thee, because thou sufferest that woman Jezebel, which calleth herself a prophetess, to teach and to seduce my servants to commit fornication, and to eat things sacrificed unto idols.
Revelation 2:21
And I gave her space to repent of her fornication; and she repented not.
Revelation 2:22
Behold, I will cast her into a bed, and them that commit adultery with her into great tribulation, except they repent of their deeds.
Revelation 2:23
And I will kill her children with death; and all the churches shall know that I am he which searcheth the reins and hearts: and I will give unto every one of you according to your works.
Revelation 2:24
But unto you I say, and unto the rest in Thyatira, as many as have not this doctrine, and which have not known the depths of Satan, as they speak; I will put upon you none other burden.
Revelation 2:25
But that which ye have [already] hold fast till I come.
Revelation 2:26 And he that overcometh, and keepeth my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations:
Revelation 2:27 And he shall rule them with a rod of iron; as the vessels of a potter shall they be broken to shivers: even as I received of my Father.
Revelation 2:28
And I will give him the morning star.
Revelation 2:29 He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches.


Commentary: Jezebel was the wife of King Ahab, who killed many of God's prophets during the time of Elijah, favoring the flattering words of false prophets (read 1 Kings 16-21 and 2 Kings 9). She encouraged compromise with the world, and dabbled in various weird doctrines (what we see as new age today - it goes all the way back to Babylon) and Baal worship. The warning to the church here is to excise the pagan practices in worship, heed the true prophets of God, and turn back to the truth before it's too late. We know that some saints DO go through the final wrath - the Day of the Lord - because we see them worshipping in Revelation chapter 7.

Revelation 7:13 And one of the elders answered, saying unto me, What are these which are arrayed in white robes? and whence came they? 14 And I said unto him, Sir, thou knowest. And he said to me, These are they which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. 15 Therefore are they before the throne of God, and serve him day and night in his temple: and he that sitteth on the throne shall dwell among them. 16 They shall hunger no more, neither thirst any more; neither shall the sun light on them, nor any heat. 17 For the Lamb which is in the midst of the throne shall feed them, and shall lead them unto living fountains of waters: and God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes.

Revelation 16:8 And the fourth angel poured out his vial upon the sun; and power was given unto him to scorch men with fire.

Commentary: We can be fairly sure that this description applies to those who suffered the vial/bowl wrath, because the fourth bowl (Third Woe) was in Rev. 16:8 (not The Great Tribulation, but the Day of the Lord). Otherwise, it doesn't really make sense that they would find comfort in NOT seeing the sun or feeling its heat.

The best way to worship in spirit and truth is to read the Bible and see what the Lord wants in worship. For example, observing the seventh day Sabbath (as did Jesus, Paul, Peter, and the early church) would be a good starting point. Contrary to what some believe - that Jesus' resurrection on Sunday became the basis for the switch - Sunday worship wasn't widely practiced until Roman Emporer Contstantine issued the Sunday law of March 7, 321, reads: "On the venerable Day of the Sun let the magistrates and people residing in cities rest, and let all workshops be closed. In the country, however, persons engaged in agriculture may freely and lawfully continue their pursuits; because it often happens that another day is not so suitable for grain-sowing or for vine-planting; lest by neglecting the proper moment for such operations the bounty of heaven should be lost." (note the unfortunate reference to the pagan day of the sun.)

Over the next few hundred years, various the church leadership adopted stricter and stricter rules forbidding work on Sunday, and moving the time of worship to Sunday morning instead of Friday evening. Of course, anti-Semitism had a lot to do with the rejection of the Lord's appointed sabbath as well. In any case, we know that God does not change, so the seventh-day sabbath is the only God-ordained day for worship (that day being Friday evening to Saturday).

He also gave us times of the holy convocations, His feasts (not Jewish feasts, the feasts of the LORD), but we've tended to ignore those as well, following men's traditions instead of God's will. The Council of Nicea in 325 moved the celebration of the resurrection from Passover (when the early apostolic church celebrated it) to the pagan fertility celebration of Easter (named after variations of the goddess Ishtar- Eostre, Ashtoreth, Astarte, Ostera, and Eastre.) If you don't think this is upsetting to God, just read a little about that idol worship 1st Kings 11 or 2nd Kings 23.

And, before you call this legalism, here are a few words from our Lord & Savior:

Matthew 5:17 Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil. 18 For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled. 19 Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach [them], the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.

Mark 2:28 "Therefore the Son of man is Lord also of the sabbath "

Mark 7:7 "Howbeit in vain do they worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men. 9 And he said unto them, Full well ye reject the commandment of God, that ye may keep your own tradition."

John 14:15 If ye love me, keep my commandments.

Here are some commandments:

Exodus 20:8 Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy. 9 Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work: 10 But the seventh day is the sabbath of the LORD thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates: 11 For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the LORD blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it.

Leviticus 23:1-2 "And the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, "Speak to the children of Israel, and say to them: 'The feasts of the LORD, which you shall proclaim to be holy convocations, these are My feasts."

Deuteronomy 12:30-32 "Do not inquire after their gods, saying, 'How did these nations serve their gods? I also will do likewise.' You shall not worship the Lord your God in that way; for every abomination to the Lord which He hates they have done to their gods . . . Whatever I command you, be careful to observe it; you shall not add to it nor take away from it"

Commentary: Finally, for all the talk of persecution relating to not saying Merry Christmas ... There's no mention whatsoever in the Scriptures about Jesus or the apostles, or the early church celebrating his birthday - NONE. Also, he wasn't born December 25th, and we know this because the shepherds were watching their flocks by night, and Joseph and Mary were traveling to be registered with the census. Because winter weather in the area was cold and rainy, the roads could become impassable, so the census was not conducted in the winter. And, in late December, the shepherds would have tried to shelter their flocks from the rain and cold.

Finally, we have proof of the month, based on the conception date of John the Baptist (he was 6 months older than Jesus). John's father, Zacharias, was a priest serving in the Jerusalem temple during the course of Abijah (Luke 1:5). Historical calculations indicate this course of service corresponded to June 13-19 in that year (The Companion Bible, 1974, Appendix 179, p. 200). At that time, he learned that he & his wife would have a child, and she conceived when he returned home. Figuring the date of conception to be in June (or early July), John would have been at the end of the following March, or beginning of April. Add 6 months to that, and we can date Jesus birth at the end of September or early October.

So wait - When do we celebrate the Savior's birth?

While there are no references to Jesus' birthday celebration in the gospels, there IS a feast day that takes place in late September/early October - the Feast of Tabernacles (Sukkot). Note why and how this feast is to be celebrated, and consider - Since there was no room at the inn, Mary and Joseph stayed in a sukkah (booth) and when a Jewish son was born, he was circumcised eight days later. Also consider that the Feast of Tabernacles is specifically mentioned as a celebration that will continue on the new earth, and will involve lots of celebrating and bringing gifts to the King (King of Kings) Zechariah 14:16-19. Finally, note in Revelation 21:3 - "And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God [is] with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people, and God Himself shall be with them, [and be] their God." Given these scriptures, you can be safe celebrating the Feast of Tabernacles.

Do you know whose birthday is REALLY on December 25th? MITHRA. Jesus is NOT the reason for the season!

1 Corinthians 10:19-21 "What am I saying then? That an idol is anything, or what is offered to idols is anything? Rather, that the things which the Gentiles sacrifice they sacrifice to demons and not to God, and I do not want you to have fellowship with demons. You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons; you cannot partake of the Lord's table and of the table of demons." (see also 2 Corinthians 6:14-18)

The tradition of celebrating December 25 as Christ's birthday came to the Romans from Persia. Mithra, the Persian god of light and sacred contracts, was born out of a rock on December 25. Rome was famous for its flirtations with strange gods and cults, and in the third century [274] the unchristian emperor Aurelian established the festival of Dies Invicti Solis, the Day of the Invincible Sun, on December 25. (Emporer Constantine was a Mithra worshipper until he converted, and was likely the driving force behind tying the winter feast celebration of Mithra to Christianity). This Midwinter Festival was not even officially called Christmas until 800 years after Christ was born!

Customs such as evergreen trees, candle lighting, and mistletoe came from the Yule-feast of the Norseman, and gift-giving and wild parties came from the Roman celebration of Saturnalia. Early Church leaders tried to ban the pagan celebrations, but people were too attached to them, so they became part of the church tradition. In order to capture some of the pagan worshippers away, the Catholic church set the date of December 25th to coincide with the pagan festivities. The Puritan settlers in America, however, banned the celebration - declaring December 25th a fast day (not feast day). The country did not recognize Christmas as a holiday until 1836 - first in Alabama.

What would Jesus say?

 

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All Scriptures are taken from the King James Version (KJV).