Reading the commendation and rebuke of the 7 churches in Rev 2 and 3, I come away with these observations that these are the seven characteristics of a church that our Lord desires.
- A loving church (Ephesus). A church that continues to love the Lord and loving one another. Rev 2:4-5
- A suffering church (Smyrna). A church that is prepared to suffer ostracism, tribulation and poverty. Rev 2:9.
- An externally-uncompromising church (Pergamum). A church that will not yield and compromise with the excesses of the outside world. Rev 2:14-16.
- An internally-uncompromising church (Thyatira). A church that will not tolerate false teaching within. Rev 2:20-21.
- An unpretentious church (Sardis). A church that will actually complete her works instead of putting up enough just for her image. Rev 3:1-2.
- A faithful church (Philadelphia). A church that stays the course despite having little power. Rev 3:8.
- A humble church (Laodicea). A church that is not proud and living in prosperous and care-less ease. Rev 3:17-18.