February 27, 2022

restore Love

restore Love
  • We see the birth of the church in Ephesus in Acts 19:1-7
  • So, there was a small group of believers already in Ephesus when Paul passes through.
    • But they were trying to do church and the Christian life without the Holy Spirit.
  • Later Paul returns to Ephesus and stays there for two years teaching them.
  • Acts 18:19 Aquila and Priscilla Were also instrumental in the start of the church in Ephesus.
  • Now let’s look at the city itself.
  • From both scripture and from extra-biblical history we also know that this city was the home to some of the Greek gods.
  • Acts 19:35 tells us that there was even a temple here for the Greek god Artemis.
  • So, the city may have also been a destination for those who would worship Artemis.
  • Rev 2:2 tells us the city of Ephesus was also prone to the false Apostles of the day
    • All of that to say the he city of Ephesus was a city ripe with syncretism.
  • In Acts 20:29-30 Paul had warned this would happen.
  • Rev 2:2 Jesus commends them for fighting against what was false and evil
  • Rev 2: 3 Jesus commends them again for not growing weary in this fight.
  • Rev 2:4 But Jesus does have something against them.
  • In this constant fight against , while they may not have grown weary, Jesus does say they have lost their___________.
  • So here in Rev 2:4 when Jesus says “you have lost the love you had at first,” He means both their love of God and their love of neighbor.
    • Now I would imagine that they had to lose their love of God first.
    • This happened because their focus was on being right, rather than having their focus on God.
    • The Greek word translated as “forsaken” means “abandoned” and can even mean “divorce.”
      • Jesus is saying that they have abandoned him or even divorced themselves from Him.
      • And they have also abandoned or divorced themselves from their neighbors.
    • In the constant battle to fight against syncretism they lost both their love for God and for people in general.

Verse Rev 2:5-6 This loss of love is so serious that Jesus says it is sin, otherwise He would not tell them to repent.

  • The are two parts to this.
    • First, Where is my love level with God?
    • Second, and where is my love level with other people, even people I disagree with?