Hold Fast To The Name Of Christ
"I know your works, and where you dwell, where Satan's throne is. And you hold fast to My name, and did not deny My faith even in the days in which Antipas was My faithful martyr, who was killed among you, where Satan dwells" (Rev. 2:13).
The church in Pergamos received some sharp rebukes and condemnations in the verses that follow, however, we ought to be greatly impressed with the commendation that they received from Christ in this verse. This city was a very difficult place for a Christian to live and remain faithful. After all, this is where Satan's throne was - this is where Satan dwelt. This is where pagan worship was prevalent and emperor worship was enforced. But in spite of the pressures and persecution these saints faced, they held fast to the name of Christ and did not deny the faith of Christ. Even when one of their own, Antipas, was killed because of his fidelity to Jesus, they remained loyal to their Lord and steadfast to His cause.
How strong is our faith? Would we hold up under the pressure of threats, persecution, and even death? If our life was on the line, would we continue to confess the name of Christ or deny Him to save our own neck?
Jesus says to His disciples: "If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me. For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it" (Matthew 16:24-25). If we struggle to muster up the courage to confess Christ and share His gospel with an unbelieving world in the absence of persecution, how would we fare in the midst of it?
Let us be moved and inspired by the faith, courage, and loyalty of our brethren in the first century. And let us be resolved to hold fast to Christ's name and not deny His faith no matter the cost!
Jesse A. Flowers
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