Those of us who know the scriptures know of a truth that the 2nd and 3rd chapters of the Revelation are 7 letters to the churches; which are not only letters to 7 actual churches which existed in the period of time when John the apostle received the Revelation from Jesus (about A.D. 90), but also are letters to the whole church of Jesus Christ which, in chronological order, reveal the dispensations within the “church age” (the period of time beginning with the birth of the church in the 2nd chapter of Acts, and culminating in the catching away of the church prior to God’s future dealing with Israel and the sinners of the world – 1 Thessalonians 4:16-5:11).
In the 1st chapter, we see that Jesus had in his right hand seven stars. These seven stars are the angels of the seven churches (Rev. 1:20).
What does that mean?
The scripture reveals that clearly…
God appeared and spoke by his angel several times in the Bible.
Galatians 3:19 “…it [the law of Moses] was ordained by angels in the hand of a mediator…”
Hebrews 2:2 “For if the word spoken by angels was steadfast…”
Acts 7:53 “Who have received the law by the disposition of angels, and have not kept it.”
These are referring to times when God spoke his word to Moses by sending his angel, which is the same as God himself speaking. (see Exodus 14:19, 32:34, Numbers 22:22-35, etc…)
Jesus sent his angel to give John the Revelation of himself.
Revelation 22:16 “I Jesus have sent mine angel to testify unto you these things in the churches…”
Yet this angel was not a created being, speaking the words of Jesus in the second person (in other words, he was not saying, “he says”, or “he wants you to do this”, as a messenger would speak for his master); but the actual presence of Jesus himself in the form of his angel.
Acts 12:15 “Then said they, It is his angel.”
In this instance they were speaking of Peter, because they supposed that Herod had killed him, and that it was not Peter in the flesh appearing at their door, but rather his angel. The angel of Peter would not be a messenger sent by him, but rather Peter himself in the spirit. That is what is meant in the Bible by the angel of a person, or by the angel of a church. It is the very spiritual essence and personality of that person or church; not a separate entity sent as a messenger.
The angels of the seven churches are the very churches themselves; the very heart and personality of them; the spirit of them; the mind of them. And the Lord Jesus declared with a surety that he has them in the palm of his right hand; which means that he knows, and even guides, their every thought and deed according to his own perfect wisdom and eternal purpose. And thus the 7 letters to the churches lay out the sequence of events of some 2,000 years in the church, which was ordained of the Lord in the beginning; and when we search the scriptures, we can see that it is an exact and miniature timeline of events that exactly mirrors the evolution of Israel, even as a parenthesis within a parenthesis. But I digress…that is another subject…
The doctrine of the Nicolaitanes is not a concept that began with the New Testament church; however it is in the New Testament that this doctrine and practice is first addressed as such…much in the same way that MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH (Revelation 17:5), which now wears the mask of the Roman Catholic Church and her Protestant daughters, is a system of religion which predates the Roman Church even back to the days of Cain and Abel; but in these last days it is referred to as such.
The word “Nicolaitanes” (Revelation 2:6, 15) is a transliteration of the Greek word, “Nikolaites” (Strong’s # 3531), which means an adherent of “Nikolaos” (strong’s # 3532), which is a compilation of two words– “Nikos” (#3534), which means “Conquest, triumph, or victory”, and,“Laos”(#2992), which means “a people”.
The word Nicolaitanes means those who are of the group or order that have conquered the people. In other words, they are the ones who have exalted themselves to be in control, and better than the rest, and therefore to be revered as above the body and without reproach.
In both places that mention the Nicolaitanes (Revelation 2:6,15), it is clearly stated that Jesus HATES their doctrine and deeds.
It was the doctrine of the Nicolaitanes that Jesus himself exposed and reproved when he called the Pharisees, Sadducees, and lawyers hypocrites, vipers, and children of their father the Devil. They had exalted themselves above the people, and changed the law of God for their own vain traditions; and the Lord said that whenever they converted anyone to their religion, they only made him twofold more a child of hell than themselves (Matthew 23:15)!
And today it is the doctrine of the Nicolaitanes that has the religious multitudes deceived and enslaved unto vanity and liturgy with the satanic concept of “clergy and laity”, which is the FALSE precept that some in the church are meant to be in charge, and others are meant to just sit and be entertained and told what to do.
This concept is totally foreign to the church of Jesus Christ in the New Testament of the Bible. Yes, in the church God has ordained apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors, and teachers; but nowhere in the New Testament has it been ordained of God that these men (yes, they are men, and not women) should wear costumes, or be called by flattering titles, or exercise control over the church.
The Bible tells the saints of God (Christians) to be subject to those who are in authority (1 Thessalonians 5:12,13, Hebrews 13:17); but also maintains with clarity that those who are overseers must be accountable to those over whom they are placed…
“…neither as being lords over God’s heritage, but being ensamples to the flock.” (1 Peter 5:3).
Likewise when Peter the apostle of Christ said, “Ye younger, submit yourselves unto the elder.”,
…he also finished by saying,
“Yea, all of you be subject one to another, and be clothed with humility (not with red and purple robes of pride and self exaltation!): for God resisteth the proud, and giveth grace to the humble.” (1 Peter 5:5).
Brethren, when you walk into one of the many man made organizations called “churches” today, and you see men wearing costumes, or allowing themselves to be called “reverend”…
(“Reverend” is from the Latin word “august”, which the Roman Caesars called themselves. Caesar Augustus means “the King is god”. Later on, this pagan tradition was instituted in the Roman church by the pagan priests [who are priests of nothing], who decided that the people should call them “reverend”, which means, “to be worshiped as God”.)
…or to be called, “pastor so and so”, or “apostle so and so”, or “elder so and so”, or when you see these ungodly men sitting in “special” seats in the front of the church-
(for they love the chief seats in the synagogues, and to be called of men, Rabbi, Rabbi–Matthew 23:6,7)
…you can know of a truth that these men are the Nicolaitanes, and that God hates what they are doing!
They honour each other and pat each other on the back as if they were holy men of God, but they are hypocrites and liars, and usurpers of authority. Come away from them! They know not the honour that cometh from God, nor do they care for it. They desire the honour and reverence of men, and that is their reward. The blackness of darkness forever is reserved for them, and soon the empire that they have built for themselves, which they have blasphemously called by Jesus’ name, will fall like a bowing and a tottering wall, and sudden destruction shall come upon them, and there shall be no escape. They are vipers, children of hell; and those whom they beget in their hypocrisy (the converts they make and teach) are literally twofold more the children of hell than they are. A corrupt tree cannot bring forth good fruit. It is just not possible. Corruption only begets corruption. Wherefore come out from among them, and be separate, and touch not the unclean thing, and I will receive you, saith the LORD…
The meeting of the church is for the saints to gather together and worship God, enjoy his fellowship in the praises of his people, and experience his power and gifts in the form of teaching, prophecy, tongues and interpretation, healing, etc…, and although there may be those who are called and equipped to teach, the Bible says that,
“ye may all prophesy one by one, that all may learn, and all may be comforted.”
But in the churches today, the “elders” have the whole show worked out and timed just so, that there is no place for a word from the Lord if any man or woman had one. Plus that they are so protective of their self made empires that they are afraid to let anyone speak in the church who has not been given permission by the pastor, because that person might speak a word from the Lord Jesus Christ that will wake up the people and tear down the false authority they have established by their “clergy and laity” system of the Nicolaitanes…
Where in the Bible does anyone declare that a saint of God needs permission from the pastor before he speaks a word in the church? That is ridiculous! The Bible says, Let the prophets speak two or three, and let the other judge (by the scripture, whether the word is from Jesus or not–1 Corinthians 14:29-31)!
Anyone who forbids you to speak in the church without knowing what you are going to say is a Nicolaitane, and he is afraid that you are going to topple his established control over the people with the truth! Period! There is no other reason for that kind of unscriptural dominance. I personally have been physically removed from a denominational church for trying to speak a word from the Lord without the pastor’s prior approval and permission. What a shame it is when the Lord sends his word to a church to help them learn and be saved, and they throw him out so they can keep their religion as they have established it.
That, brethren, is why the Lord Jesus Christ is OUTSIDE of the church today, saying,
“Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.”(Revelation 3:20)
Jesus in this verse is talking to the CHURCH, not the world; and he is pleading for anyone who will COME OUT of that filthy abominable religion of the Laodiceans (which is Greek for, “the people of my wrath”), and come to have fellowship with him. To “sup” is to break bread together, which is an intimate form of fellowship, and also a covenant privilege. But in order to do that, we must first “open the door”, which means to come out of the denominations and their religious nonsense, and meet Jesus outside.
When he said,
“I will come in to him, and will sup with him…”,
…he was definitely NOT saying that he would come in to the denomination from whence we have come to meet him: but rather to “come in” to someone means to have intimate fellowship with him; even as with a man and his wife.
So, in order to have that intimate fellowship with the Lord Jesus Christ that we need and desire greatly (if we are of his seed), we must necessarily come out of the religious system that he hates. To just sit there so as to not offend men, and still profess to love Jesus, will only anger him more.
A friend of the world is verily the enemy of God. No man may serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other.
“Come out of her, my people”, saith the Lord; and so say I his minister. Come out and live, or abide therein and perish. It is black and white. It is just that simple.
Brethren and friends, now you know how to identify the doctrine and the deeds of the Nicolaitanes. You know also that Jesus Christ hates them, because they are oppressors of his people and usurpers of his authority over them. They are of the wicked one, and their spiritual offspring are children of hell even as they are. They can offer you nothing but death and destruction, and the confusion of their “theological” rhetoric.
(Theology is nonsense at least, and witchcraft at most, because it is an illicit tool to twist and pervert the meaning of the word of God!)
They are in the business of making merchandise of you, and desire to glory in your flesh.
Jesus Christ our Lord is the Good Shepherd who has laid down his life for the sheep. Let us be washed with water by his word, and come out from among the children of his wrath so we can bask in the sunshine of his wisdom and love and joy! And when we come together to break bread and have fellowship in his presence, let us not be bound by the yoke of the ungodly who desire to have us for their disciples; but rather let us in liberty worship God our Saviour and rejoice in the power of his love and the wondrous gifts he hath bestowed on every man and woman in his house.
“When he ascended up on high, he led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men.”
(Ephesians 4:8, Psalm 68:18)
To him be honour and glory and power forevermore.