Revelation 2:4 But I have this against you, that you have left your first love.
What was the first love of the local body in Ephesus? Jesus Christ. This was established in Revelation 2:3. They had “endured for My name’s sake.”
The Greek language of the verse is consistent with divorce in a marriage. The word for “left” is απηιεμι/aphiemi. It means: to send away; to bid going away or depart; of a husband divorcing his wife; to let go, let alone, let be; to disregard; to omit, neglect; to give up, keep no longer. –Strong’s Concordance
The church at Ephesus had essentially divorced itself from the head of the body, Jesus Christ. The irony is the Apostle Paul had written the Ephesians regarding this very topic in Ephesians 5:22-23. The passages discuss how the body of believers should submit to Christ because He died for her. His death allows believers to be free and cleansed of sin. The body is to be the pure and blameless bride. Jesus Christ is the Savior of the body.
Where does the body of Christ stand today in the 21stcentury. Are we any different than the church at Ephesus?
Revelation 2:5 Therefore remember from where you have fallen, and repent and do the deeds you did at first; or else I am coming to you and will remove your lampstand out of its place—unless you repent.
The word “repent” is stated twice in the verse. “Repent” is not a mystical, spiritual word that has some deep theological meaning. The Greek word for repent is μετανοεο/metanoeo. It means: to change one’s mind for better, heartily to amend with abhorrence of one’s past sins.
One should be ashamed of their actions. There should be some conviction. Be honest. Right is right and wrong is wrong. We can all do better.
This verse is not discussing eternal salvation. Salvation was not lost for the individual believer. The individual’s position in Christ would not change. The issue is the local church at Ephesus. The church can be taken away.
Jesus gives the solution first. Get back to the basics as they were doing previously. Revelation 2:2-3.
Jesus stated the consequence. There was accountability. The lampstand or the church would be removed.
The church at Ephesus had fallen and it did not return. History tells and shows what happened. Today, the church and the city of Ephesus are ruins.
It did not have to be for Ephesus. And it does not have to be for us.
Change your heart. Change your mind. Rethink. Refocus…Jesus Christ.