The symbolic chronological purpose or identification of the seven churches, with their respective characteristics, serve as a prophetical preview of the seven great periods in Christendom from Pentecost to the Rapture. The symbolic suggested outline for this predictive panorama may be seen as follows:
1. Ephesus (A.D. 30-300) – Its name means “Desirable” and it was known as the Apostolic Church.
2. Smyrna (A.D. 100-313) – Its name means “Myrrh” and it was known as the Martyr Church.
3. Pergamos (314-590) – Its name means “Marriage” and it was known as the Compromising Church.
4. Thyatira (590-1517) – Its name means “Continual Sacrifice” and it was known as the Roman Catholic Church.
5. Sardis (1517-1700) – Its name means “Remnant” and it was known as the Reformation Church.
6. Philadelphia (1700-1900) – Its name means “Brotherly Love” and it was known as the Revival Church.
7. Laodicea (1900-rapture) – Its name means “People’s Rights” and it was known as the Worldly Church.
As you consider the nature of each of the seven churches and their assigned period within Christendom you should be able to see more clearly the cyclical nature of the church and its relationship with the Lord Thy God.
Bible reading plans can help you grow as a follower of Christ. They guide you through reading the Bible, so that you can see God’s plan for this world and why it matters.
An intentional Bible reading plan also helps you stay committed. The regular cadence of reading, studying and applying God’s Word will help you develop Bible reading as a habit — something you work into your everyday routine.
Going through a reading plan makes sure that you don’t just camp out on your favorite Bible passages. Some of the stories in the Bible will surprise you. Some passages may puzzle you. Some verses you’ve never seen before will jump off the page. The element of surprise as you read through the entire Bible is one of the great reasons you should consider a reading plan.
But most importantly, it’s life change that we’re after. You’re not following a reading plan just to check off your Bible reading for the day. You’re meeting with God, who inspired the words of this Book. A reading plan that keeps God’s Word in front of you in a systematic and consistent way is a tool that God can use powerfully in your life.
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