Revelation: Sardis… “But You Are Dead”

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Revelation 3:1 “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…

…you have a nameThe Greek word is ονομα/onoma. Strong’s Concordance defines onoma as: the name is used for everything which the name covers, everything the thought or feeling of which is aroused in the mind by mentioning, hearing, remembering, the name, i.e. for one’s rank, authority, interests, pleasure, command, excellences, deeds etc.

The church at Sardis thought they were a big deal. They had a lofty impression of their local body. Believers in Sardis had a self-proclaimed reputation of tremendous character. Just ask them. The name of Sardis was full of pride.

“This is the church at Sardis! We are hot stuff and welcome to our exclusive Country Club!”

…that you are alive…The church at Sardis was ζαο/zao in the Greek. The syntax of the verse indicates they viewed themselves in a continual state of greatness. They perceived themselves to have an abundant zeal for Christian living and lifestyle. The local body in Sardis thought they were the model church, refreshing with vitality. Humility was not a strong suit.

Zao is defined as: to live, breathe, be among the living (not lifeless, not dead); to have true life and worthy of the name; active, blessed, endless in the kingdom of God; living water, having vital power in itself and exerting the same upon the soul. Metaphorically: to be in full vigor; to be fresh, strong, and efficient. (Strong’s Concordance)

 

There is how a church or a believer views themselves, then there is how Jesus assesses the situation.

…but you are dead. Jesus said those in Sardis wereνεκροσ/nekros. Here is the word defined by Strongs’: One that has breathed his last, lifeless; deceased, departed, one whose soul is in heaven or hell; destitute of life, without life, inanimate. Metaphorically: spiritually dead; destitute of a life that recognizes and is devoted to God, because given up to trespasses and sins; inactive as respects doing right; destitute of force or power, inactive, inoperative.

The church at Sardis viewed itself in a continual state of life and living. Jesus viewed the local believers in a continual state of physical and spiritual death. Jesus saw them as a group who had been turned over to their sins. The two views stood in complete, polar opposites.

The practical application for us as believers is to get over our inflated opinions of self. What Jesus thinks of us is more important than how we see ourselves.

 

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Paul Lehr

About Paul Lehr

Paul Lehr is a Speech Pathologist and home health provider. The majority of his work focuses on swallowing disorders in neurologically impaired patients. He has been a business owner for the past 20+ years. Paul earned his BS in Speech Pathology and Audiology from Oklahoma State University. His MA was completed in Speech Pathology at Oklahoma State University. When Paul’s son was born prematurely in 2003, there was lots of support from family and friends. Keeping up with phone calls was too much. So he provided e-mails with updates on health and well-being. In time, his son was healthy and came home. The e-mails stopped but Paul was encouraged to keep writing. Three years later, Paul was asked to assist in writing a Sunday school curriculum. The lessons were well received by the local body and on the church website. Again, he was encouraged to keep writing. Next, Paul taught a Sunday School class for junior high and high school students. He would share notes with others from the class he was teaching. In 2010, a young man at a local church encouraged Paul to start a blog. The website focuses on topical studies such as creation, God’s Appointed Holidays and Feasts, the Gospel of Jesus Christ, end times prophecy, ancient Hebrew cultural customs, the Prophet Isaiah, and various topical studies. Three years later, Paul’s 10 year old son told me, “Dad, you need to do updates on how the news is tied to the Bible.” The “Trend Update” was born. In the spring of 2016, a friend and fellow Boy Scout father encouraged Paul to start a YouTube channel. His friend thought it was a natural fit considering the content and subscribers from the website. God’s prophetic words have reached millions in over 190 countries. Isaiah 55:11 So will My word be which goes forth from My mouth; it will not return to Me empty, without accomplishing what I desire, and without succeeding in the matter for which I sent it. That same Boy Scout father would later introduce Paul to the movies of Trey Smith and the God in a Nutshell Project… Guest speak and presenter duties have focused on the topics of the Gospel of Jesus Christ in God’s Appointed Spring Feasts, Mystery Babylon, the antichrist, Ezekiel 38-39, and current events related to Bible prophecy. At this time, Paul would like to encourage each individual to learn about who God is. Because one way or another, we are all eternal. The issue is our destiny. Welcome to PaulthePoke and www.paulthepoke.com
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