Revelation Study Guide: Week 3, Chapter 2:1-7
By Coty Pinckney
Read Chapters 2 and 3, preferably in one sitting. As you read, construct a table summarizing the parallel structure of these letters. Put each of the seven churches in vertical columns, and the following seven rows:
"I know something good about you . . ."
"But I know something bad . . ."
Therefore . . ."
Call to hear
Promise to the overcomer.
Not all letters contain all points, and some points will not differ between letters.
After this, focus on the letter to Ephesus, 2:1-7, reading it several times. Also look at these Old Testament passages: Genesis 2:9, 3:22-24, Deut 6:4-9, Psalm 104:31-35, Psalm 139:19-24, Proverbs 3:13-18, Jeremiah 2:2-13.
(1) What is the importance of the description of Jesus in verse 1? In what way, if any, is this particular description related to the problems and challenges of this church?
(2) Consider verses two and three. Try to paraphrase what Jesus says here, using more words than are in the text. Do you individually live up to this church's example? Do we corporately as a church live up to this church's example? Compare also to the descriptions of other churches in chapters 2 and 3 (look at your chart); which other churches fall short on these points?
(3) Given all that is positive in verses 2 and 3, why is Jesus' statement in verse 4 so important? See also Matt 24:12-13, Mark 12:28-34, Phil 3:7-14.
(4) Compare verse 5 to verse 2. Jesus commends the church for its deeds in verse 2, but tells them to do the deeds they did at first in verse 5. In what sense were they not doing the deeds they did at first?
(5) What would happen to a church which lost its lampstand?
(6) Why are the Ephesians commended for hating the deeds of the Nicolaitans (see OT passages above)?
(7) What happens to those who eat of the tree of life?
(8) How can we ensure that we do not fall into the error of the Ephesians? How can we reignite that first love if we have lost it?
Now read Stedmanís second sermon, which is all on this chapter, and Wilcock, 42-44. Focus on the last third of Stedman's sermon, beginning with the quote from John Newton. Think again about these questions in light of the commentaries.
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