Pastor Herman Kneller Editorials
John, the revelator, is given a view of the fifth church, which is the church following the reformation. Persecution has totally ceased. Reformed churches were built but the work of reform had almost completely stopped. Those who followed the early reformers has lost their zeal for the word of God and were now willing to accept what the reformers had worked for.
The abuses brought into the church earlier were accepted into the reformed churches. For example, the theory of what happens to the person going to Heaven at death. What kind of Heaven would it be if the parent or the grand-parent could see the abuser and problem that their loved ones are going through. God in His mercy has put them to sleep so they don't know anything that goes on in this world.
There is also the theory of eternal fire. How could we love God if we believed He is burning our loved ones continually? The whole theory comes out of the Garden of Eden when God told Adam if he ate of the forbidden tree that he would surely die. Satan says to Eve that she shall not surely die. Satan had no idea what death was for there had never been a death in the universe for there had never been sin. Satan was only contradicting God (and man has believed him ever since.)
There also was the observance of the first day of the week. When God had set aside and hallowed the Seventh day, not the first. God said, “I change not. I am the same yesterday, today and forever.” Because He doesn't change we can trust Him. The change of the day of worship was strictly made by man, not God.
Then John saw the sixth church and commended them for what they were doing even though they held these errors. They were thinking of others. During that period, churches began to send messages to other countries to tell them of the love of Jesus and of Heaven. In the end, every message to the different churches is the same. The principal is the same to the many or few who follow Jesus no matter what their circumstances may be. If they follow, to the best of their knowledge, and trust Jesus' promise that there is always a home in Heaven then when Jesus comes He will bring the rewards.