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Revelation - Sardis

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Introduction to the City/Church

Sardis is 30 to 40 miles southeast of Thyatira.
It was once one of the most glorious cities in Asia, but much of its splendor lay in the past.
Despite being the source of many military battles, it still continued in its wealth and commercial prosperity, but lived mostly in the past.
The people of Sardis had a special interest in death and immortality, and much of their religious life was nature worship.

The Text

Do not be thrown off by the seven spirits in verse 1. (; , ).
The seven stars of verse 1 are speaking in reference to the angel of the churches. Christ is saying that he controls the church through their angel, which answers to him alone.
Here, their
A. Strength
They are not yet completely dead.
B. Solution
Christ speaks five imperatives in the remaining verses, as the church is like the city.
1. Jesus says that they must show themselves to be watchful. In other words, wake up.
2. They must now strengthen what survives. This is both people and spiritual qualities. They are bad, but not all bad. Strengthen THAT.
3. Remember both the practices you received and the teachings of the church that you heard. Heard does not just mean to listen, but to act.
4. Keep these things.
5. Repent… Because their end is near!
C. Promise and Challenge
Before Christ gives his normal challenge, he gives a word of encouragement to the righteous remaining in Sardis.
He then promises glory and security to those who are conquerers.
Finally, the Lord will confess his name before His Father and before the angels. (Matt. 10:32)
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