To the Church in Smyrna
8 These are the words of him who is the First and the Last, who died and came to life again.
9 I know your afflictions and your poverty—yet you are rich! I know about the slander of those who say they are Jews and are not, but are a synagogue of Satan.
10 Do not be afraid of what you are about to suffer. I tell you, the devil will put some of you in prison to test you, and you will suffer persecution for ten days. Be faithful, even to the point of death, and I will give you life as your victor’s crown.
11 Whoever has ears, let them hear what the Spirit says to the churches. The one who is victorious will not be hurt at all by the second death.
(We know when the Bible speaks of ten days, it means ten years because it tells us a year is like a day to God)
The seven churches were located in, what is now western Turkey. But these churches have spread world-wide so are still very relevant. The book of Revelation was put there for Christians to know what was to come in the last days.
It follows that whatever church you attend falls into the description of one of the seven churches, so churches must still look at themselves and heed the warnings. The church you attend won't fall into every category but it WILL fall into one of them.
At this time, we can look at the church that was in Smyrna and realize that churches all over the world are in danger. Particularly in the middle east where Christians are being arrested, thrown into prisons for years, and tortured for not renouncing Jesus Christ.
When you live in a country where we're assured, by our Constitution, the freedom to worship as we choose, we tend to ignore or forget in other countries our brothers and sisters are having to die because they believe in Jesus Christ.
Fortunately we Americans don't have to worry about that. YET. But that could change quickly if we don't guard against losing our freedoms. If you don't believe that, you've got your head in the sand and you're not paying attention.
Islam is the fastest growing religion in the world. Countries are being taken over and threatened. Churches are being bombed for their belief in Christianity. Even the countries that have always been considered neutral are now threatened.
It doesn't matter what your religion or lack of religion is, if you allow our freedom of religion to be taken away, you WILL be killed as a heretic if we lose our freedom.
The general opinion of atheists seems to be, they want freedom from Christianity. They now have that. But lose our freedom of religion means you lose the right to choose. America allows you the right to choose. God allows you the right to choose. If we allow our country to be brought down by the muslims, we will no longer have ANY freedom.
Does it then follow we are to hate our muslim neighbors? Absolutely not. Christians are to love. That's what makes us different. The Bible tells us to be gentle as a dove and wise as a serpent. It doesn't tell us to be stupid.
Pay attention and keep your eyes on Israel and on what's happening here in America.