10 Fear nothing that you are about to suffer. Be aware that the devil is about to throw some of you into prison, that you may be tested [in your faith], and for ten days you will have tribulation. Be faithful to the point of death [if you must die for your faith], and I will give you the crown [consisting] of life.11 He who has an ear, let him hear and heed what the Spirit says to the churches. He who overcomes [the world through believing that Jesus is the Son of God] will not be hurt by the second death ([a]the lake of fire).’
Message to Pergamum
12 “And to the angel (divine messenger) of the church in [b]Pergamum write:
“These are the words of Him who has and wields the sharp two-edged sword [in judgment]:
Revelation 2:11The Valley of Hinnom located south of Jerusalem was the place where garbage burned continuously. Often regarded in ancient times as symbolic of hell (the lake of fire), reserved for the wicked. Paradise or Abraham’s bosom (cf Luke 16:22) was the place reserved for the good in anticipation of heaven. Mentioned in Matt 5:22, 29, 30; 10:28; 18:9; 23:15, 33; Mark 9:43, 45, 47; Luke 12:5; James 3:6.
Revelation 2:12Pergamum (modern Bergama, Turkey) was built on a promontory about sixteen miles from the Aegean Sea. It was famous as a worship center for many pagan gods including Zeus (Jupiter, king of gods), Dionysus (Bacchus, god of wine and intoxication), and Asklepios (god of healing). The enormous altar dedicated to Zeus is on display in the Pergamon Museum in Berlin. Pergamum also had an important temple dedicated to the worship of Caesar. Refusal to take part in the imperial cult was considered treason. A culturally sophisticated city as well as a center for pagan worship, Pergamum’s library, believed to contain over 200,000 volumes, was second only to the Library of Alexandria.
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