Revelation 3:1 Index
"And unto the angel of the church in Sardis write; These things saith he that hath the seven Spirits of God, and the seven stars; I know thy works, that thou hast a name that thou livest, and art dead."
Research Material

HISTORICAL BACKGROUND:

  • Sardis was the home of a church whose past glory and present failure called forth the rebuke that it had the name of living but was dead. This must have remained the Sardians of the lost glory of their city, the once proud capital of Lydia, and of the fact that twice its impregnable fortress had been captured through negligence -- an unnoticed fault in the crumbling rock of the cliff had offered foothold to the enemy. How significant was the warning, "Be watchful, and strengthen the things which remain" (Revelation 3:2). (Froom 93)
  • Sardis is located thirty-five miles from Thyatira at the foot of Mt. Tomolus, which is 6,700 feet high. Sardis was built on a plateau of crumbling rock at 1,500 feet. The walls of the plateau on which the city was built ere almost perpendicular. The only way into the city was a narrow passage that could easily be guarded and defended. Because of the strategic location, it was looked upon as being impregnable.
    • One of Alexander's soldiers was watching the city, trying to figure out a way into it. He saw one of the Lydian soldiers accidently drop his helmet down the mountainside. Making his way down the embankment, he picked up his helmet and made his way back up the wall. That night, a group of Alexander's soldiers followed the Lydian soldier's path and made their way up the wall into the city, overthrowing Lydia's Persian capital city. (KC 61)

GREETING: The salutation to the church Jesus is addressing: "And unto the angel of the church in Sardis write..." (KC 60)

IDENTIFICATION: Presents an aspect of Jesus's life that will be an encouragement to the church: "These things saith he that hath the seven Spirits of God, and the seven stars..." (KC 60)

CONDITION: The Condition of the church locally and in the church age. "I know thy works, that thou hast a name that thou livest, and art dead." (KC 60)

"...unto the angel of the church in Sardis..."

  • The word Sardis means "Birthstone." (KC 60)