Self-sufficiency always directs us to apathy toward Christ. The church in Laodicea was materially rich but spiritually bankrupt. Yet Jesus graciously called them to return and to restore intimacy with them.
The church in Philadelphia appeared weak in the eyes of the world. But in the eyes of Jesus, they were strong as they held fast to the name of Jesus. Strength comes through the person of Christ and the Word of Christ.
Looks can get deceiving. Jesus accused the church in Sardis of acting spiritual on the outside but lacking vitality on the inside. But there is hope in Christ through repentance and earnest pursuit of Him.
Inward desires and outward pressure from the world may lure us from holding fast to God’s truth. Jesus rebuked the church of Thyatira for tolerating sexual immorality and idolatry to go on in their lives. The one who holds fast will receive eternal blessings from God.
In 1 John 2:12-27, John continued to give his audience the third test to check their relationship with God. The third test is a theological test – a test of conviction. As believers, we are faced with two oppositions from Satan: 1) the way of this world 2) false teachers. Our conviction in our triune God affirms our identity in Christ and empowers us to remain faithful to God.