Following Jesus 91

 Revelation 2:8-11. “And to the angel of the church in Smyrna write: ‘the words of the first and the last, who died and came to life. “‘I know your tribulation and your poverty but you are rich) and the slander of those who say that they are Jews and are not, but are a synagogue of Satan. 10 Do not fear what you are about to suffer. Behold, the devil is about to throw some of you into prison, that you may be tested, and for ten days you will have tribulation. Be faithful unto death, and I will give you the crown of life. He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. The one who conquers will not be hurt by the second death.’
What is a living church? Vs. vs.8-9. A living church is one which believes in Jesus Christ of the gospel. Vs. 8. 
“And to the angel of the church in Smyrna write: ‘The words of the first and the last, who died and came to life.’” Jesus is speaking to the Church of Smyrna through the Apostle John. The word angel many mean in this context the pastor of the church. 
Jesus identifies Himself as the first and the last. He is first in importance and priority along with being the conclusion of all things. He not only physically died but also physically rose from the dead. Jesus’ statement refers to not only His deity but also His humanity. It is a concise statement regarding the gospel. 
What is the Gospel? 
  • God exists (Genesis 1:1). 
  • God is holy (Isaiah 6:1-8). 
  • Man is sinful (1 Kings 8:46; 2 Chronicles 6:36; Psalm 143:1-2; Proverbs 20:9; Isaiah 64:6; Jeremiah 17:9; Ecclesiastes 7:20; Romans 3:10-20); God became man (John 1:14; Romans 1:1-3; Galatians 4:4; Philippians 2:7; 1 Timothy 3:16; Hebrews 2:14; 1 John 1:1; 4:1-2; 2 John 7). 
  • God, Jesus Christ, lived a righteous and sinless life (2 Corinthians 5:21; Hebrews 4:14-15). 
  • Jesus Christ died a substitutionary death on behalf of sinners (Isaiah 52:13-53:12; Romans 3:21-26; Galatians 3:10-14; 2 Corinthians 5:21); 
  • Jesus Christ resurrected from the grave (Romans 1:1-5; 1 Corinthians 15). 
  • Jesus Christ ascended to heaven (Acts 1:1-11; 2:29-33). 
  • Salvation from the penalty, power and eventual presence of sin is by grace alone, through faith alone, in Jesus Christ alone (Ephesians 2:1-10). 

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