From the beginning of the creation, the love between man and His Creator abounds. Adam would then be so much blessed to experienced that wonderful love attention of God. That unconditional love that sees only the good and welfare of His creation. He provided all that satisfies his longings even knowing the dangers it will cause. Yet He covered him with guidance and protection. If He has a selfish love, then freedom will not be possible with man. Haven’t you considered this love as the reason why you’re alive? Haven’t you realized that from the beginning He should be your first love? Would you take an action to return to that love and give it a second chance in your life to grow and flourish once again?
When the end times prophecies are felt everywhere, dissecting and absorbing the Scripture is the best thing to do. The first phase of the book of Revelation revealed to us the letters to the seven churches. We can see the state of each of these seven churches comparing to our very own state of our walk with Jesus. The church of the Ephesus came first on His lists.
“To the angel of the church in Ephesus write: These things saith he that holdeth the seven stars in his right hand, he that walketh in the midst of the seven golden candlesticks:” Revelation 2:1 ASV
THE CITY OF EPHESUS:
Ephesus: Was a famous city in the ancient world, with an equally famous church. Paul ministered in Ephesus for three years (Acts 19:1, Acts 19:10, Acts 20:31). Aquilla and Priscilla, with Apollos served there (Acts 18:24-28). Paul’s close associate Timothy (1 Timothy 1:3) worked in Ephesus. According to strong and consistent historic tradition, the Apostle John also ministered there. This great city was also world-famous as a religious, cultural, and economic center of the region. Ephesus had the notable temple of Diana, a fertility goddess worshipped with immoral sex. This tremendous temple to Diana in Ephesus was regarded as one of the seven wonders of the ancient world. It was supported by 127 pillars, each pillar 60 feet tall, and it was adorned with great sculptures. https://www.blueletterbible.org/kjv/rev/2/1/
i. “The Temple of Artemis was also a major treasury and bank of the ancient world, where merchants, kings, and even cities made deposits, and where their money could be kept safe under the protection of deity.” (Longenecker in his commentary on Acts)
ii. “Ephesus was a stronghold of Satan. Here many evil things both superstitious and satanic were practised. Books containing formula for sorcery and other ungodly and forbidden arts were plentiful in that city.” (Longenecker in his commentary on Acts)
THE CHURCH IN EPHESUS:
Jesus describes Himself to the church at Ephesus: “These things says He who holds the seven stars in His right hand, who walks in the midst of the seven golden lamp stands” . Here was emphasize the AUTHORITY of JESUS in the CHURCH (He holds the seven stars) and His immediate presence in the Church (He walks in the midst of the seven golden lampstands). This introduction stresses that Jesus is central to the church, and should be recognized as central to the church. The churches belong to Jesus, not to the leaders of the churches or to the people of the churches. JESUS HOLDS them. From here, the LOVE OF THE CREATOR TO HIS CREATION (man) STILL LINGERS. This is a reason why the enemy, the evils in this world wanted to erase His presence in the church and totally destroy the church in which Jesus has established as He’s the Bridegroom.
What Jesus knows about the Christians of Ephesus?
“I know your works, your labor, your patience, and that you cannot bear those who are evil. And you have tested those who say they are apostles and are not, and have found them liars; and you have persevered and have patience, and have labored for My name’s sake and have not become weary.” Rev. 2:2-3
Jesus looked at His church with great love, and He knew its condition. There may be sin or corruption hidden in a congregation, but it isn’t hidden to Jesus. He would say the same thing to us today, both as individuals and as a congregation: “I KNOW YOUR WORKS”. Your works, your labor, your patience: Jesus knew what this church did RIGHT and it’s FAILURE. You cannot bear those who are evil: The Ephesian church pursued doctrinal purity as Paul warned the Ephesians in Acts 20:29-31. From this commendation of Jesus, we know that the Ephesians took Paul’s warning seriously. They were complimented because they hated the deeds of the Nicolaitans — but who were the Nicolaitans and what were their deeds? The doctrine of the Nicolaitans is also condemned in Revelation 2:15, and in that passage it is related to immorality and idolatry. ( expounded in David Guzik Bible Commentary )…
Irenaeus (writing in the late second century) described what he knew of the Nicolaitans: “The Nicolaitanes are the followers of that Nicolas who was one of the seven first ordained to the diaconate by the apostles. They lead lives of unrestrained indulgence. The character of these men is plainly pointed out in the Apocalypse of John, as teaching that it is a matter of indifference to practice adultery, and to eat things sacrifice to idols.” The words that make up the name Nicolaitans is “Nikao-laos” means literally “to conquer the people.” Based on this, some point to presumptuous claims of apostolic authority and to the heart that sets up hierarchies and separates the “clergy” from the “laity.” Perhaps the Nicolaitans fulfilled all these aspects, being both an idolatrous immorality and a presumptuous, hierarchical, “hidden mysteries” system typical of Gnosticism. The Nicolaitans, like all deceivers that come from the body of Christ, claimed “not that they were destroying Christianity, but that they were presenting an improved and modernized version of it.” (L. Morris quoting Barclay)
YOU LEFT YOUR FIRST LOVE:
“Nevertheless I have this against you, that you have left your first love.” Rev. 2:4
Despite all the good in the Ephesian church, there is something seriously wrong. They have LEFT— not LOST — their FIRST LOVE. They once had a love that they don’t have anymore. This can be described as “a definite and sad departure.” (Robertson). The distinction between LEAVING and LOSING is important. Something can be lost quite by accident, but leaving is a deliberate act, though it may not happen suddenly. When we lose something we don’t know where to find it; but when we leave something, we know where to find it. Though they had left their first love, everything looked great on the outside. If you would have attended a service of the church at Ephesus, you might have thought, “This is a great church. They are doing so much, and they really guard the truth.” At the same time, you might have had a vague, uneasy feeling — yet it would probably be hard to pin down. It wasn’t hard for Jesus to see the problem, even though everything probably looked wonderful on the outside. The problem was serious. Without love, all is vain. No wonder Jesus said, “Nevertheless I have this against you.” “A church has no reason for being a church when she has no love within her heart, or when that love grows cold. Lose love, lose all.” (Spurgeon)
Left your first love: What love did they leave?
I was born and raised in a Christian home, I’m truly blessed by the faith legacy our parents had passed on to us. I have grown and known the church all because of JESUS. I consider Him as my “FIRST LOVE” at the age of seven, I let Him entered my heart. That relationship grows, and at younger age I long to constantly read His love letters the “Bible”, and listen to stories about Him. In my eighteen years, I committed my life to the call to follow Him. His love flows abundantly as I share this personal Savior relationship to others. Until the gods of this world keep knocking in the door of my heart. Offering trickery love that made me open my heart to enter in. Since then I became like the church in Ephesus: I’m not LOSING MY FIRST LOVE BUT I’m LEAVING MY FIRST LOVE. Slowly in a way I never expected and perceived because I’m still within the church, in ministry and service. The ignition of that love to Jesus was not the same anymore. Trapped and marred by the deceiving manipulations of satan in this world.
Jesus say: “I KNOW YOUR WORKS, YOUR HEART, BUT YOU HAVE LEFT YOUR FIRST LOVE “. I put Priority to the people I love, my job, my dreams, my wants, my needs, my happiness , myself and everything revolves around me, Jesus became an Option in my life, in which I’m still His priority. I leave aside my love to Him behind without knowing it. He then changed everything, that seed of love in my heart sprouting again. This time it’s roots are digging deeper anchoring tightly to the huge roots of the main Tree ( Jesus), sipping mindfully the nutrients of the Vine remaining to it in order for me to live with His love. He could never be your FIRST LOVE IF HE IS NOT AT THE PEDESTAL OF YOUR HEART SITTING IN THE VERY THRONE OF IT. A driving force in your life and not at a side track of it. In this way HIS LOVE WILL RADIATE IN YOUR HEART, The HOLY SPIRIT EMPOWERING YOU TO LET HIS “LOVE” BE YOUR “LIFE”. This love will crashes down the inner pride and cleanse you from sinful nature that entangled within. A “LOVE LIFE” WITH JESUS WILL NEVER BE HIDDEN IT’S FRUITS ARE VERY VISIBLE. A relationship with Jesus is the ultimate one. It’s YOUR LIFE : WITHOUT QUESTIONS AND WITHOUT RIVALS. If you’re in a relationship, protect it and be faithful to the one you love , the more if He’s your FIRST LOVE, YOUR PERSONAL SAVIOR Or else like the church in Ephesus your candlestick will be removed out of place in God’s kingdom. Do not be deceived! Discern! and Pray!
“Remember therefore whence thou art fallen, and repent and do the first works; or else I come to thee, and will move thy candlestick out of its place, except thou repent.” Revelation 2:5 ASV
“Jehovah appeared of old unto me, saying, Yea, I have loved thee with an everlasting love: therefore with lovingkindness have I drawn thee.”Jeremiah 31:3
Read the corresponding article to The Church in Laodicea here: https://inspirationalkin.com/2022/03/05/lukewarm-faith-a-spiritual-disease/