Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
October 7, 1954

The Ideal And The Undesirable

Steve Butters, Brawley, California

In this paper I have attempted to present two churches, the Ideal and the Undesirable. I have lifted fragments of sentences, and sometimes complete sentences, from Revelation 2-3, and have fitted them into a continuous narrative, in the form of two letters, using only as many of my own words as was necessary to accomplish the correct grammatical construction.

When you have read the two letters, fill in the blank which is fitted to you with the name of the congregation of which you are a member. Then do your level best to maintain or to correct the situation, as the case may be.

And to the angel of the church of________ write:

These things saith he that holdeth the seven stars in his right hand, he that walketh in the midst of the seven golden candlesticks, the first and the last, who was dead, and lived again, he that hath the seven Spirits of God, and the seven stars, he that is holy, he that is true, he that hath the key of David, he that openeth and none shall shut, and that shutteth, and none openeth, the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God:

I know thy works and thy toil and patience, and that thou canst not bear evil men, and didst try them that call themselves apostles, and they are not, and didst find them false; and thou hast patience and didst bear for my name's sake, and hast not grown weary. And this thou hast, that thou hatest the works of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate. I know thy love and faith and ministry, and patience, and that thy last works are more than the first. Thou hast a little power, and didst keep my word, and didst not deny my name. I know thy tribulation and thy poverty (but thou art rich), and the blasphemy of them that say they are Jews, and they are not, but are a synagogue of Satan. I know where thou dwellest, even where Satan's throne is: and thou holdest fast my name, and didst not deny my faith, even in the days of Antipas my witness, my faithful one, who was killed among you, where Satan dwelleth. Verily, I have some who did not defile their garments.

Fear not the things which thou art about to suffer: behold, the devil is about to cast some of you into prison, that ye may be tried; and ye shall have tribulation ten days. Be thou faithful unto death. That which ye have hold fast till I come, that no one take thy crown.

To him that overcometh, to him will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the paradise of God. And I will give thee the crown of life, and thou shall not be hurt of the second death. I will give of the hidden manna, and I will give him a white stone, and upon the stone a new name written, which no one knoweth but he that receiveth it. Ye shall walk with me in white, for ye are worthy. He that overcometh shall thus be arrayed in white garments, and I will in no wise blot his name out of the book of life, and I will confess his name before my Father, and before his angels. And to you I say, as many as have not the teaching of Jezebel, the adulteress, who know not the deep things of Satan, as they are wont to say; I cast upon you none other burden. He that keepeth my works, unto the end, to him will I give authority over the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron, as the vessels of the potter are broken to shivers; as I also have received of my Father: I will give him the morning star. Behold, I give of the synagogue of Satan, of them that say they are Jews, and they are not, but do lie; behold, I will make them to come and worship before thy feet, and to know that I have loved thee. I also will keep thee from the hour of trial, that which is to come upon the whole world, to try them that dwell upon the earth. I come quickly. He that overcometh, I will make him a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go out thence no more: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, the new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God, and mine own new name.

And to the angel of the church of_________ write:

These things saith he that hath the sharp two-edged sword, the Son of God, who hath his eyes like a flame of fire, and his feet are like unto burnished brass, he that searcheth the reins and hearts:

I have this against thee, that thou didst leave thy first love, thou hast a name that thou livest, and thou art dead, thou art neither hot nor cold: I would thou wert cold or hot. I have found no works of thine perfected before my God. Thou hast there some that hold the teaching of Balaam, who taught Balak to cast a 'stumbling block before the children of Israel, to eat things sacrificed to idols, and to commit fornication. So hast thou some that hold the teachings of the Nicolaitans in like manner. Thou sufferest the woman Jezebel, who calleth herself a prophetess; and she teacheth and seduceth my servants to commit fornication, and to eat things sacrificed to idols. And I gave her time that she should repent; and she willeth not to repent of her fornication. Thou sayest, I am rich, and have gotten riches, and have need of nothing; and knoweth not that thou art the wretched one and miserable and poor and blind and naked.

Remember thou whence thou art fallen, and repent and do the first works. Repent, therefore, and be thou watchful, and establish the things that remain, which were ready to die. Remember therefore how thou hast received and didst hear: and keep it and repent. I counsel thee to buy of me gold refined by fire, that thou mayest become rich; and white garments, that thou mayest clothe thyself, and that the shame of thy nakedness be not made manifest; and eye salve to anoint thine eyes, that thou mayest see. As many as I love I rebuke, and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent.

Because thou art lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spew thee out of my mouth, and will move thy candlestick out of its place, except thou repent. Behold, I cast Jezebel into a bed, and them that commit adultery with her into great tribulation, except they repent of her works. And I will kill her children with death; and I will give unto each one according to your works. If therefore thou shalt not watch, I will come as a thief, and thou shalt not know what hour I will come upon thee.

Behold, I stand at the door and knock: if any man hear my voice and open the door, I will come to him, and will sup with him, and he with me. He that overcometh, I will give to him to sit down with me in my throne, as I also overcame and sat down with my Father in his throne.

He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith to the churches.