The Church at Sardis Was Spiritually Dead

Each week in America, paramedics arrive on the scene of an accident where the victim has crossed the barrier between life and death. There is no heartbeat. Breathing has stopped. All the vital signs of life are absent. But the paramedics do not accept this death as final. They be … More


Sardis is about 30 miles south of Thyatira, a wealthy city, and the capital of Lydia. The people were proud and thought they could not be overtaken but Cyrus the Great of Persia stormed the city and took it over in the sixth century. From a religious standpoint it was a center of pagan worship and site of the temple of Artemis, the ruins of which remain to this day. Sardis was a dead church, full of empty professions. Like the Pharisees, their outward appearance was a facade hiding their lack of life (v. 1). They were exalted to wake up from their spiritual slumbers and to repent of their falling away (vv. 2-3). His message to them was to REMEMBER, REPENT AND OBEY.

While the church as a whole was dead or dying, Christ recognized a godly remnant who had remained true to the Lord (v. 4). He promised that true believers will be dressed in white (symbolic of the righteousness of God) and their names will be recorded in the book of life (vv. 5-6). The letter to Sardis should be a searching message to churches today that are full of activity and housed in beautiful buildings but never see anyone saved or changed lives among the Christians. They are unable to recognize the difference between profession and possession. The need today is the same as it was in the Church at Sardis and that is to “remember,” “repent” and “obey”.


Lord, help me to evaluate the present true spiritual status of my family and my own personal life? Am I doing all I can to keep myself and my family spiritually alive and productive?

Revelation 3:1-6 (English Standard Version)

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