Revelation 2:4
Parallel Verses
New International Version
Yet I hold this against you: You have forsaken the love you had at first.

New Living Translation
"But I have this complaint against you. You don't love me or each other as you did at first!

English Standard Version
But I have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first.

New American Standard Bible
But I have this against you, that you have left your first love.

King James Bible
Nevertheless I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
But I have this against you: You have abandoned the love you had at first.

International Standard Version
However, I have this against you: You have abandoned the love you had at first.

NET Bible
But I have this against you: You have departed from your first love!

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
“But I have something against you, because you have left your former love.”

GOD'S WORD® Translation
However, I have this against you: The love you had at first is gone.

Jubilee Bible 2000
Nevertheless I have against thee that thou hast left thy first love, charity.

King James 2000 Bible
Nevertheless I have somewhat against you, because you have left your first love.

American King James Version
Nevertheless I have somewhat against you, because you have left your first love.

American Standard Version
But I have this against thee, that thou didst leave thy first love.

Douay-Rheims Bible
But I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first charity.

Darby Bible Translation
but I have against thee, that thou hast left thy first love.

English Revised Version
But I have this against thee, that thou didst leave thy first love.

Webster's Bible Translation
Nevertheless, I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love.

Weymouth New Testament
Yet I have this against you--that you no longer love Me as you did at first.

World English Bible
But I have this against you, that you left your first love.

Young's Literal Translation
'But I have against thee: That thy first love thou didst leave!
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

2:1-7 These churches were in such different states as to purity of doctrine and the power of godliness, that the words of Christ to them will always suit the cases of other churches, and professors. Christ knows and observes their state; though in heaven, yet he walks in the midst of his churches on earth, observing what is wrong in them, and what they want. The church of Ephesus is commended for diligence in duty. Christ keeps an account of every hour's work his servants do for him, and their labour shall not be in vain in the Lord. But it is not enough that we are diligent; there must be bearing patience, and there must be waiting patience. And though we must show all meekness to all men, yet we must show just zeal against their sins. The sin Christ charged this church with, is, not the having left and forsaken the object of love, but having lost the fervent degree of it that at first appeared. Christ is displeased with his people, when he sees them grow remiss and cold toward him. Surely this mention in Scripture, of Christians forsaking their first love, reproves those who speak of it with carelessness, and thus try to excuse indifference and sloth in themselves and others; our Saviour considers this indifference as sinful. They must repent: they must be grieved and ashamed for their sinful declining, and humbly confess it in the sight of God. They must endeavour to recover their first zeal, tenderness, and seriousness, and must pray as earnestly, and watch as diligently, as when they first set out in the ways of God. If the presence of Christ's grace and Spirit is slighted, we may expect the presence of his displeasure. Encouraging mention is made of what was good among them. Indifference as to truth and error, good and evil, may be called charity and meekness, but it is not so; and it is displeasing to Christ. The Christian life is a warfare against sin, Satan, the world, and the flesh. We must never yield to our spiritual enemies, and then we shall have a glorious triumph and reward. All who persevere, shall derive from Christ, as the Tree of life, perfection and confirmation in holiness and happiness, not in the earthly paradise, but in the heavenly. This is a figurative expression, taken from the account of the garden of Eden, denoting the pure, satisfactory, and eternal joys of heaven; and the looking forward to them in this world, by faith, communion with Christ, and the consolations of the Holy Spirit. Believers, take your wrestling life here, and expect and look for a quiet life hereafter; but not till then: the word of God never promises quietness and complete freedom from conflict here.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 4. - But I have (this) against thee, that thou didst leave thy first love. The Authorized Version unwarrantably softens the censure by inserting "somewhat;" the Greek means rather, "I have (this grave thing) against thee." In "hath aught against thee" (Matthew 5:23) and "have aught against any" (Mark 11:25), the "aught" (τι) is expressed in the Greek; here nothing is expressed. "Thy first love" is expressed very emphatically with the article repeated; "thy love, thy first one." The meaning of it is much disputed. It cannot mean "thy former gentleness towards evil men and false apostles." It may mean "thy love of the brethren," so much insisted upon in St. John's First Epistle. More probably it means "thy first love for me." Christ is here speaking as the Bridegroom, and addresses the Church of Ephesus as his bride (comp. Jeremiah 2:2-13). This thought would be familiar to the Ephesians from St. Paul's teaching (Ephesians 5:23-33). It shows strange ignorance of human frailty and of history to argue that "a generation at least must have passed away, and the thirty years from Nero to Domitian must have elapsed, ere the change here noted could come to pass." Does this writer forget the Epistle to the Galatians? In a very few years the Churches of Galatia had left their first love. The frequent and rapid lapses of Israel into idolatry show the same thing from the time when Aaron made the calf down to the Captivity. This verse is certainly no obstacle to the theory that the Apocalypse was written about A.D. .

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

Nevertheless I have somewhat against thee,.... So the Jews represent God saying, concerning their fathers, "Abraham", &c. "I have something against them" (a). Christ has nothing against his people, his faithful ministers, and true churches, in a judicial way, or to their condemnation, for there is none to them that are in him; but he has often many things to complain of in them, and to rebuke and chastise them for, in a way of providence: and what he had against the church at Ephesus, and against the churches in the period which that represents, follows,

because thou hast left thy first love: by which is meant, not hospitality to strangers, or an affectionate care of the poor of the church, or a zealous concern to feed the flock, and maintain church discipline; but the love of the saints to God, and Christ, and one another, which appeared at the beginning of this church state, when they were all of one heart and one soul, as generally at first conversion love is the warmest; and so it was at the first planting of Gospel churches, and therefore here called first love. Now this, though it was not lost, for the true grace of love can never be lost, yet it was left; it abated in its heat and fervour; there was a remissness in the exercise of it; what our Lord had foretold should be before the destruction of Jerusalem was fulfilled in this period of time, the love of many waxed cold, Matthew 24:12; through the prevalence of corruption in some; and through an over love to the world, as in Demas, and others; and through a desire of ease and freedom from reproach and persecution; and through the introduction of errors, which damp the heat of love, and spirit of religion; and through the contentions and divisions among themselves, as at Corinth, Galatia, and elsewhere, which greatly weakened their love to one another, and to divine things; and which was very displeasing to Christ, who, for the restoring of them, gives the following advice. Compare with this 2 Timothy 1:15.

(a) Pesikta Rabbati apud Yalkut Simeoni, par. 2. fol. 60. 4.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

4. somewhat … because—Translate, "I have against thee (this) that," &c. It is not a mere somewhat"; it is everything. How characteristic of our gracious Lord, that He puts foremost all He can find to approve, and only after this notes the shortcomings!

left thy first love—to Christ. Compare 1Ti 5:12, "cast off their first faith." See the Ephesians' first love, Eph 1:15. This epistle was written under Domitian, when thirty years had elapsed since Paul had written his Epistle to them. Their warmth of love had given place to a lifeless orthodoxy. Compare Paul's view of faith so called without love, 1Co 13:2.

Revelation 2:4 Additional Commentaries
Context
Message to the Church in Ephesus
3and you have perseverance and have endured for My name's sake, and have not grown weary. 4But I have this against you, that you have left your first love. 5'Therefore remember from where you have fallen, and repent and do the deeds you did at first; or else I am coming to you and will remove your lampstand out of its place-- unless you repent.…
Cross References
Jeremiah 2:2
"Go and proclaim in the hearing of Jerusalem: "This is what the LORD says: "'I remember the devotion of your youth, how as a bride you loved me and followed me through the wilderness, through a land not sown.

Matthew 24:12
Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold,
Treasury of Scripture

Nevertheless I have somewhat against you, because you have left your first love.

I have.

Revelation 2:14,20 But I have a few things against you, because you have there them …

because.

Revelation 3:14-17 And to the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; These things …

Jeremiah 2:2-5 Go and cry in the ears of Jerusalem, saying, Thus said the LORD; …

Matthew 24:12,13 And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold…

Philippians 1:9 And this I pray, that your love may abound yet more and more in knowledge …

Philippians 3:13-16 Brothers, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing …

1 Thessalonians 4:9,10 But as touching brotherly love you need not that I write to you: …

2 Thessalonians 1:3 We are bound to thank God always for you, brothers, as it is meet, …

Hebrews 6:10,11 For God is not unrighteous to forget your work and labor of love, …

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