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A Relationship Issue

Churches of Revelation  •  Sermon  •  Submitted
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Church of Sardis has strong words spoken against her for being dead!

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Introduction

We have gotten past the halfway point for our study on the “Seven Churches of Revelation” tonight we are diving into the fifth church in the series and it is the church of Sardis.
Sardis is an interesting city as it was a strong hold during early warfare but in the Roman period it was more a relic than anything.
Do more introduction work.
Revelation 3:1–6 NASB95
1 “To the angel of the church in Sardis write: He who has the seven Spirits of God and the seven stars, says this: ‘I know your deeds, that you have a name that you are alive, but you are dead. 2 ‘Wake up, and strengthen the things that remain, which were about to die; for I have not found your deeds completed in the sight of My God. 3 ‘So remember what you have received and heard; and keep it, and repent. Therefore if you do not wake up, I will come like a thief, and you will not know at what hour I will come to you. 4 ‘But you have a few people in Sardis who have not soiled their garments; and they will walk with Me in white, for they are worthy. 5 ‘He who overcomes will thus be clothed in white garments; and I will not erase his name from the book of life, and I will confess his name before My Father and before His angels. 6 ‘He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.’

1. A relationship with Christ is greater than outward appearance. (1)

Revelation 3:1 NASB95
1 “To the angel of the church in Sardis write: He who has the seven Spirits of God and the seven stars, says this: ‘I know your deeds, that you have a name that you are alive, but you are dead.
Icebergs (Show Picture)
Icebergs are great examples how outward appearance does not always equal reality. For instance, Icebergs vary in size greatly. However, what is consistent is that 90% of the iceberg is underwater. While by sight it might appear small, underneath the iceberg is ready to destroy any boat that gets to close to its jagged underwater teeth.
People are often the same, they have differing outward appearances but inside they can be full of hate or love depending on their relationship with Christ.
Check this photo out: Show don’t judge a book by its cover (Girl and spiked hair boy)
1 Samuel 16:7 NASB95
7 But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not look at his appearance or at the height of his stature, because I have rejected him; for God sees not as man sees, for man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”
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Deuteronomy 6:4–6 NASB95
4 “Hear, O Israel! The Lord is our God, the Lord is one! 5 “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. 6 “These words, which I am commanding you today, shall be on your heart.

2. A relationship with Christ gives life to obedient living. (2-3)

Revelation 3:2–3 NASB95
2 ‘Wake up, and strengthen the things that remain, which were about to die; for I have not found your deeds completed in the sight of My God. 3 ‘So remember what you have received and heard; and keep it, and repent. Therefore if you do not wake up, I will come like a thief, and you will not know at what hour I will come to you.
John 15:9 NASB95
9 “Just as the Father has loved Me, I have also loved you; abide in My love.
2 Corinthians 10:5 NASB95
5 We are destroying speculations and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ,
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Romans 1:5 NASB95
5 through whom we have received grace and apostleship to bring about the obedience of faith among all the Gentiles for His name’s sake,
John 14:15 NASB95
15 “If you love Me, you will keep My commandments.
2 Corinthains 10:5

3. A relationship with Christ is found in few church goers. (4)

Luke 13:24
Revelation 3:4 NASB95
4 ‘But you have a few people in Sardis who have not soiled their garments; and they will walk with Me in white, for they are worthy.
Luke 13:23–25 NASB95
23 And someone said to Him, “Lord, are there just a few who are being saved?” And He said to them, 24 “Strive to enter through the narrow door; for many, I tell you, will seek to enter and will not be able. 25 “Once the head of the house gets up and shuts the door, and you begin to stand outside and knock on the door, saying, ‘Lord, open up to us!’ then He will answer and say to you, ‘I do not know where you are from.’
Luke 13:23–27 NASB95
23 And someone said to Him, “Lord, are there just a few who are being saved?” And He said to them, 24 “Strive to enter through the narrow door; for many, I tell you, will seek to enter and will not be able. 25 “Once the head of the house gets up and shuts the door, and you begin to stand outside and knock on the door, saying, ‘Lord, open up to us!’ then He will answer and say to you, ‘I do not know where you are from.’ 26 “Then you will begin to say, ‘We ate and drank in Your presence, and You taught in our streets’; 27 and He will say, ‘I tell you, I do not know where you are from; depart from Me, all you evildoers.’

4. A relationship with Christ brings promises. (5)

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Revelation 3:5 NASB95
5 ‘He who overcomes will thus be clothed in white garments; and I will not erase his name from the book of life, and I will confess his name before My Father and before His angels.

A. They receive purity. (5a)

1 John 1:9 NASB95
9 If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
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1 Corinthians 6:1–11 NASB95
1 Does any one of you, when he has a case against his neighbor, dare to go to law before the unrighteous and not before the saints? 2 Or do you not know that the saints will judge the world? If the world is judged by you, are you not competent to constitute the smallest law courts? 3 Do you not know that we will judge angels? How much more matters of this life? 4 So if you have law courts dealing with matters of this life, do you appoint them as judges who are of no account in the church? 5 I say this to your shame. Is it so, that there is not among you one wise man who will be able to decide between his brethren, 6 but brother goes to law with brother, and that before unbelievers? 7 Actually, then, it is already a defeat for you, that you have lawsuits with one another. Why not rather be wronged? Why not rather be defrauded? 8 On the contrary, you yourselves wrong and defraud. You do this even to your brethren. 9 Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, 10 nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God. 11 Such were some of you; but you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God.
1 Corinthians 6:9–11 NASB95
9 Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, 10 nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God. 11 Such were some of you; but you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God.
1 Corinthains 6:1-11

B. They receive security. (5b)

Ephesians 4:30 NASB95
30 Do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.
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John 3:15–16 NASB95
15 so that whoever believes will in Him have eternal life. 16 “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.
Romans 8:38–39 NASB95
38 For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, 39 nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, will be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Romans 8:36
John 10:28–29 NASB95
28 and I give eternal life to them, and they will never perish; and no one will snatch them out of My hand. 29 “My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand.

C. They receive the Advocate. (5c)

1 John 2:1–2 NASB95
1 My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous; 2 and He Himself is the propitiation for our sins; and not for ours only, but also for those of the whole world.
John 14:16 NASB95
16 “I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may be with you forever;
Hebrews 8:1–2 NASB95
1 Now the main point in what has been said is this: we have such a high priest, who has taken His seat at the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens, 2 a minister in the sanctuary and in the true tabernacle, which the Lord pitched, not man.
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