And to the angel of the church in Thyatira write; These things said the Son of God, who has his eyes like to a flame of fire…
With the highest title, "the Son of God," the Lord of the Church speaks - the Lord who searches as with eyes of flame and with burning, consuming fire, and treads down his enemies beneath his feet. The vision is unusually impressive, as the state of the Church is unusually momentous. The letter is extended, and describes the commendable condition of the Church, the subtle danger that threatens its life, the terrible judgments pronounced upon the corrupters of the Church's purity, the one word of demand, the watchword of the epistle - "Hold fast" - "Hold fast that which ye have till I come;" with the abundant promise to him who, doing so, triumphantly "overcometh." Leaving ampler exposition, our eye rests upon the one word, "Hold fast."
I. This call to fidelity is RAISED ON THE COMMENDABLE STATE OF THE CHURCH. Happy they to whom the Lord can say, "Hold fast," keep that thou hast, persevere. Of this Church the Lord knows - and knows to commend - its "works, and love, and faith, and ministry, and patience," and growing usefulness.
II. IT IS SIGNIFICANT OF THE LORD'S APPROBATION OF THE CHURCH'S STATE. Here is no word of exhortation to repent. The keen, searching glance of the flaming eyes does not detect any fault in the body of the Church. In the absence of condemnation is the Divine justification and approval. His smile is upon his faithful ones, against whom no accusation can be raised. If a few are faulty in one particular, the bulk of the Church is pure. A difference is drawn between her children and the rest that are in Thyatira: "as many as have not this teaching." The Lord delights in his Church characterized by zeal, by love, by triumphant faith, by unwearied patience, by abundant works.
III. The call to fidelity is MADE NECESSARY BY THE PRESENCE OF GRIEVOUS AND SUBTLE DANGERS. False teachers are abroad - or, at least, a false teacher - against whom, as would seem, some one in power had not been sufficiently guarded. "Thou sufferest," etc. The holiest and most active Church has its dangers from the subtle breath of error - even zeal and love may be drawn aside. The very fervour of spirit which is commended lays itself open, by its own honesty of purpose, to the deceits of the designing. "Hold fast" warns of danger near as truly as it approves of the possession held.
IV. The exhortation is further enforced by A VIEW OF THE TERRIBLE JUDGMENT THREATENED AGAINST THE SEDUCTRESS. (Vers. 21-23.)
V. BY THE EVER-PRESENT THOUGH GRACIOUSLY VARIED PROMISE TO THE FAITHFUL. (Vers. 26-28.) - R.G.
Parallel VersesKJV: And unto the angel of the church in Thyatira write; These things saith the Son of God, who hath his eyes like unto a flame of fire, and his feet are like fine brass;
WEB: "To the angel of the assembly in Thyatira write: "The Son of God, who has his eyes like a flame of fire, and his feet are like burnished brass, says these things: