Bible Society of South Africa
Gerhard Lindeque

Seven days of inspiration from Revelation - Day 6

I will keep you safe

Bible text(s)

The Message to Philadelphia

7“To the angel of the church in Philadelphia write:

“This is the message from the one who is holy and true. He has the key that belonged to David, and when he opens a door, no one can close it, and when he closes it, no one can open it. 8I know what you do; I know that you have a little power; you have followed my teaching and have been faithful to me. I have opened a door in front of you, which no one can close. 9Listen! As for that group that belongs to Satan, those liars who claim that they are Jews but are not, I will make them come and bow down at your feet. They will all know that I love you. 10Because you have kept my command to endure, I will also keep you safe from the time of trouble which is coming upon the world to test all the people on earth. 11I am coming soon. Keep safe what you have, so that no one will rob you of your victory prize. 12I will make those who are victorious pillars in the temple of my God, and they will never leave it. I will write on them the name of my God and the name of the city of my God, the new Jerusalem, which will come down out of heaven from my God. I will also write on them my new name.

13“If you have ears, then, listen to what the Spirit says to the churches!

Revelation 3:7-13GNBOpen in Bible reader

The key that belonged to David in this passage probably refers to Isaiah 22:22, where Eliakim is given the responsibility of controlling the entrance to the king’s palace in Jerusalem. Through Jesus Christ, we now get free access to the kingdom of God. Jesus Christ is the key that makes it possible for people to be part of God’s kingdom. The consolation for the church is that nothing or no one can close this door again. What Jesus Christ has done, cannot be undone.

The synagogue of Satan refers to people who are enemies of God and his church. In the first century after Christ there were, among others, also Jews who persecuted the church. They believed that they were the true people of God. However, the church, that is all who believe in Jesus Christ, are God’s people. We are still part of God’s people today; this is precisely why we can expect hostility and opposition.

The expression “I will keep you” is used three times in this passage. First, it is used as a confirmation that the believers held unto Jesus Christ’s message of perseverance in times of suffering, then as a promise that God will keep them safe in difficult times and, finally, as a call to the church to hold on to their crown – indicating that we share in the kingdom of God.

Suffering and trials are part of every believer’s life. God does not promise that we will not suffer, but that he will keep us safe and be with us. We, as his church, live in anticipation of Jesus’ return. It gives us hope. We are important to God. Like a pillar in the temple, God is always in our presence. He has a personal and intimate relationship with us because we each get a new name from God. It makes us people with a new identity, who live differently.

Think about:

  1. 1.Is it always easy to be part of God’s kingdom?
  2. 2.What change should it make to our lives?

Bible Society of South Africav.4.14.1
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