To the angel of the church of Ephesus write; These things said he that holds the seven stars in his right hand…
The Ephesian Church highly commended for many things - for "toil" in service and for "patience" in tribulation; unwearied endurance in suffering; repudiation of "evil men," and fidelity in trying them "which call themselves apostles, and they are not;" and even" hating the works" which the Lord says, "I also hate." But the works of the Church are all known to him who "walketh in the midst of the seven golden candlesticks;" and he has an accusation to bring against the otherwise faithful Church: "I have this against thee, that thou didst leave thy first love." Love is the very core of the Church's life; it is the central, hidden spring of all good service; it is the truest evidence of the purity and reality of the Church's health. The departure from the first love is -
I. THE SIGNAL OF THE LOSS OF THE VITAL SPRING OF THE CHURCH'S RELIGIOUS LIFE. The outward forms may be perfect, zeal may be maintained, patience unwearied, orthodoxy untarnished; but if love - the soul's secret energy - be impaired, time only is needed to bring the Church to utter decay.
II. IT IS AT ONCE THE CAUSE AND INDICATION OF A FALLEN CONDITION OF THE CHURCH. "Remember therefore from whence thou art fallen."
III. IT EXPOSES TO THE JUDICIAL LOSS OF ALL. "Or else I come to thee, and will move thy candlestick out of its place." The means of recovery are:
1. Recollection. The thoughtful recall of the Church to its earlier condition. The very watchword of the epistle is "remember" - compare, contrast thy present with thy past state.
2. Repentance - ever to follow the recollection, which is the needful after thought, the first step in the process of true repentance. How would a faithful review bring the keen sense of loss, and lead the Church to rue its loss and fall and danger!
3. Renewal. "Do thy first works." A true repentance will declare itself in works answerable to amendment. To every one that truly heareth and "overcometh," the words of promise hold out the cheering assurance of life "in the Paradise of God." - R.G.
Parallel VersesKJV: Unto the angel of the church of Ephesus write; These things saith he that holdeth the seven stars in his right hand, who walketh in the midst of the seven golden candlesticks;
WEB: "To the angel of the assembly in Ephesus write: "He who holds the seven stars in his right hand, he who walks among the seven golden lampstands says these things: