The church in Thyatira had many good qualities and works, and their works were increasing. But, they had the cart before the horse, so to speak. Right relationship with the Son and Father will lead to good works, but good works alone can never lead to right relationship with the Son and the Father. Jesus told a story that has always put the fear of God into me –
“Not everyone who says to Me, Lord, Lord, shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. Many will say to Me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done wonders in Your name? And then I will declare to them, I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!” – Matthew 7:21-23
Who then can be saved? Those who are not lawless and obey Him. God told King Saul, through Samuel, “Obedience is better than sacrifice.”
While Thyatira was doing many good things, they were allowing disobedience to God’s word in their midst. They were allowing women to usurp the authority God placed in men. I know many today will disagree with my interpretation of this but, I must be faithful to declare the truth that God has revealed, not what a politically correct culture declares. Pastor John MacArthur gives a very clear teaching on this topic in the following video.
“And I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man, but to be in silence. For Adam was formed first, then Eve. And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived, fell into transgression. Nevertheless she will be saved in childbearing if they continue in faith, love, and holiness, with self-control.” – 1 Timothy 2:12-15
God also reveals His plan for womanhood and marriage through Malachi where He declares that He hates divorce –
“And did not he make one? Yet had he the residue of the spirit. And wherefore one? That he might seek a godly seed. Therefore take heed to your spirit, and let none deal treacherously against the wife of his youth.” – Malachi 2:15
The devil has been successful in destroying not only many families because of this lack of understanding but he has also corrupted the Church with his lies just like he did to the church of Thyatira with Jezebel.
The Jezebel spirit is alive and thriving in American churches today. And we can see that many of the so-called women pastors have been deceived into supporting Satan’s causes in the name of Christianity.
The letter to the church in Thyatira reminds us why these churches were picked by Jesus out of all the churches that existed in that time – because the church in these end-times will be facing the same issues they did. How do we react to these deceptions in the church? Jesus gives the answer –
“Now to you I say, and to the rest in Thyatira, as many as do not have this doctrine, who have not known the depths of Satan, as they say, I will put on you no other burden. But hold fast what you have till I come. And he who overcomes, and keeps My works until the end, to him I will give power over the nations—” Revelation 2:24-26
His coming is not far away – hold fast! Love the Lord with all your heart and follow His word. As we draw near to Him, He will draw near to us.