“I know your works, love, service, faith, and your patience; and as for your works, the last are more than the first“
I know your works
Although there was a great deal that was wrong in the church at Thyatira, yet Jesus commends them for certain things. He knows everything about their production.
A church can do many wonderful things and still be out of phase with God.
The Thyatiran church had a disposition to love others. Jesus commended none of the other six churches for their “love.” Love is no panacea that covers other wrongs.
This church ministered to others. If a church does not produce, then it is out of business. A church is not a supposed to be a social club or a rest home.
Some Christians in Thyatira walked by faith (Colossians 2:6,7).
and your patience
The word “patience” literally means to remain under. Patience is the ability to hang in there. They were people of perseverance (2:2). They did not throw in the towel when things got tough. They had fortitude and tenacity.
Patience has to do with our understanding of God’s sovereignty. If we know that God is control of our circumstances, then we keep at it for we know that God is working out the situation according to an eternal plan.
And as for your works, the last are more than the first
Most of us would have been impressed with this church. They were a bustling church. They were busy about doing God’s work. That is how most of us evaluate a church — by how active it is.
It is possible for a church to be orthodox in some things and heterodox in other things.
Although a church may hold zeal for certain Christian qualities, distortions neutralize its effectiveness for Christ. It is possible to have orthodoxy in some things but heterodoxy in something else. Thyatira was a church that did many wonderful things but they distorted the Christianity in other things. This is true of many churches today.
If someone gave you an ice cream banana float with one drop of poison in it, you would say, “I don’t want the banana split. No matter how good the rest of the banana split, I do not want to risk eating the poison.” Some people say there is good in all churches. However, if there is some false doctrine (poison) in the church, why go to that church at all? Sadam Hussein has some good in him. He must love his mother. All churches have some good in them.