Smyrna City Church
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Smyrna Church
(Revelation 2.8-9)
Page 36

"To the angel of the church in Smyrna write, 'These are the words of him who is the First and the Last, who died and came to life again. I know your afflictions and your poverty, yet you are rich! I know about the slander of those who say they are Jews and are not, but are a synagogue of Satan.'" (Revelation 2.8-9)

Female Deity Roma

Ancient SmyrnaThe name "Smyrna," means "bitterness" and may have been derived from the same word as "myrrh" which was the chief export of the city in ancient times. "Smyrna," now known as Izmir in modern Turkey is located about twenty five miles north of Ephesus on the Mediterranean Coast. It was nicknamed "Port of Asia" because it had a deep harbor for ships on the Aegean Sea. The Smyrna Church was materially poor, but spiritually rich.

Church Struggled

Godess RomaThe Smyrna church struggled against two hostile forces, a Jewish population strongly opposed to Christianity, and people who supported emperor worship or worshipped the female deity "Roma." Roma was a godess who personified the City of Rome. Persecution and suffering were inevitable in this environment. The Smyrna church had stood up well but Jesus reminded them here that he was the "First and the Last," and the "Alpha and Omega." He was the only one to be worshipped, rather than the imperial emperor cult or the female deity Roma.

"Smyrna Church"
by Ron Meacock © 2018

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