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Bobby Stafford Pergamos (The church in Hell's headquarters)
Revelation 2:12-17   Lesson 6


The Letter to the Church at Pergamos

Lesson 6

Text:  Revelation 2:12-17 


Pergamos, the ancient capital of the province of Asia, means “Citadel” in Greek.  This city was on a rocky hill about 55-60 miles north of Smyrna. It had a great library of 200,000 volumes, second only to the one in Alexandria.  Parchment was developed here and named after the city.  Many pagan gods were worshipped here, especially Aesculapis, the god of healing.  The god was represented by the symbol of a snake coiled around a rod or staff.


I.  The One with a Sharp Sword  (Verse 12)

  • Sword of the Spirit – The Word of God  (Ephesians 6:17)

  • Power of the Sword – The Word of God  (Hebrews 4:12)  This sword is not a physical weapon.  (II Corinthians 10:4)

II.  Positive Qualities of the Church  (Verse 13)

  • Christ knew all about them.  They were serving Christ in an evil city.

  • “Satan’s throne”  Satan is enthroned here by many.  There is a possible allusion to the altar of Zeus or a seat of emperor worship.  (Colossians 1:22-23)

  • They were remaining faithful despite the circumstances, a dangerous situation.  One of their number, Antipas, had even suffered martyrdom.  Tradition says he was burned inside a brass bull.

III.  Negative Qualities of the Church  (Verses 14-15)

  • A few things (not many) needed to be fixed.  They were tolerant of false teaching.  False teachers needed to be disciplined.  (Romans 16:17-18, Ephesians 5:11)

  • “Doctrine of Balaam”  Balaam enticed Israel to sin. (II Peter 2:15-16)  This led them into idolatry and fornication.  (II Peter 2:18)

  • “Teaching of Nicolaitans”  These followers of Nicolas practiced immorality and wickedness.  They felt free to do what they wanted. 

  • Christians in Pergamos needed to separate themselves from this lifestyle and not be seduced.  (II Corinthians 6:14-18)

IV.  The Solution  (Verses 16-17)

  • Repent!  Those tolerating false teaching needed to stop immediately!  If not, the Lord would come quickly and deal with them.  (II John :9-11)

  • One of the church’s greatest temptations is to compromise with the world.  Tolerating sin is not the loving thing to do.

  • To the conquerors, “over comers,” there is victory in our faith.  (I John 5:4-5) They will be given the “hidden manna,” food at God’s banquet, a table in heaven, rich blessings. [This is in contrast to the pagan banquets.] I will give a “white stone.”  This is a reference to being justified (acquitted) and victorious.  There is “a new name,” known only to the one receiving it and appropriate for him/her.


What glory and blessings await those who over come, those who hold fast to their faith and do not compromise it. 

Bobby Stafford


 More Sermons & Studies

Church of Christ Lessons on the Revelation of Jesus Christ

1.  Understanding Revelation
2.  Symbolic Objects in Revelation
3.  Understanding the Numerical Symbolism in Revelation
4.  Identifying the Opposition Characters in Revelation
John's Introduction to the Churches of Asia

6.  John's Vision of Jesus Christ
7. The Church who Left Her First Love, Ephesus
8.  Smyrna, the Suffering Church
9.  Pergamum, the church in Hell's Headquarter
10.  Thyatira, the church that Condoned Sin
11. Sardis (The Dead Church)
12. Philadelphia (The Church With Opportunity)
13.  Laodicea (The Lukewarm Church)

14.  Letter to Your Church
15.  John's Throne Vision (chapter 4)
16.  God the Redeemer Revealed  (chapter 5)
17.  God the Avenger of His Children (Chapter 6)
18.  Who Will Be Able To Stand  (Chapter 7)
19.  The First Four Trumpets
(Chapter 8)
20.  The Fifth Trumpet (Chapter 9:1-12)
21.  The Sixth Trumpet Announcement (Chapter 9:13-21)
22. The Little Book and the Unutterable Thunders (Rev 10)
23.  The Seventh Trumpet Announcement (Rev 11)
24. The Conflict (Revelation 12)
25.  Revelation 13 (Identification of the First Beast)

26.  Revelation 13 (Identification of the Second Beast)

27.  Chapter 14 (The Victorious Lamb and the Redeemed)
28.  Revelation 14 (The Turning Point)
29.  Revelation 14 (The Sickle and the Winepress)
30.  Chapter 15 (Comfort for the Saints)
31.  Chapter 16 (Bowls of Wrath)
32.  Chapter 16 (The Battle of Armageddon)
33.  Chapter 17 (The Scarlet Woman)
34.  Chapter 18 (Fallen  is Babylon)

35.  King of Kings and Lord of Lords (Chapter 19)
36.  The Fall of Satan  (Chapter 20)
37.  Heaven, the Home of the Soul  (Chapter 21)
38.  The Spirit and the Bride Say Come  (Chapter 22)
39.  The Dating of the Revelation

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Revelation 21:5-7

And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new. And he said unto me, Write: for these words are true and faithful.  And he said unto me, It is done. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life freely.  He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son.