Thyatira the Corrupt Church

There are only a few archaeological ruins of Thyatira, the fourth church John writes to in Revelation. In the modern city of Akhisar, you can see its ancient walls scattered among apartment buildings where Paul and Silas may once have preached.

Thyatira was a city of artisans, home to several guilds, including linen weavers, potters, bakers, and more. One of the biggest trades in Thyatira was the bronze trade. The city is now known for its olive, tobacco, and textile industries and today is home to more than 100,000 people. (tobacco drying By Nenad Bumbić – Own work, CC BY 3.0, (Clean Machine olives by Leandroid is licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0.)

John begins his message to the church at Thyatira, praising the love, faith, service, and perseverance of the Christians there. But then he moves to condemn Jezebel, a woman who he says misleads Christians into sin. He says that God will strike her children dead and that only those who do not hold to her teachings will be saved.

(Revelation 2:18-29) NKJ  18“And to the angel of the church in Thyatira write, ‘These things says the Son of God, who has eyes like a flame of fire, and His feet like fine brass: 19 “I know your works, love, service, faith, and your patience; and as for your works, the last are more than the first. 20 Nevertheless, I have a few things against you because you allow that woman Jezebel, who calls herself a prophetess, to teach and seduce My servants to commit sexual immorality and eat things sacrificed to idols. 21 And I gave her time to repent of her sexual immorality, and she did not repent. 22 Indeed I will cast her into a sickbed, and those who commit adultery with her into great tribulation, unless they repent of their deeds. 23 I will kill her children with death, and all the churches shall know that I am He who searches the minds and hearts. And I will give to each one of you according to your works.

24 “Now to you I say, and to the rest in Thyatira, as many as do not have this doctrine, who have not known the depths of Satan, as they say, I will put on you no other burden. 25 But hold fast what you have till I come. 26 And he who overcomes, and keeps My works until the end, to him I will give power over the nations—He sha rule them with a rod of iron; They shall be dashed to pieces like the potter’s vessels’—as I also have received from My Father; 28 and I will give him the morning star.