Revelation 2:1-7: Ears to hear.
‘To the angel of the church in Ephesus write: These are the words of him who holds the seven stars in his right hand and walks among the seven golden lampstands. 2 I know your deeds, your hard work and your perseverance. I know that you cannot tolerate wicked people, that you have tested those who claim to be apostles but are not, and have found them false. 3 You have persevered and have endured hardships for my name, and have not grown weary.4 Yet I hold this against you: you have forsaken the love you had at first. 5 Consider how far you have fallen! Repent and do the things you did at first. If you do not repent, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place. 6 But you have this in your favour: you hate the practices of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate.7 Whoever has ears, let them hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To the one who is victorious, I will give the right to eat from the tree of life, which is in the paradise of God.” NIV
Each of the seven letters follows a similar pattern. For example, each one draws from some aspect of the vision of Christ found in chapter one. Also, each short epistle contains the words:
He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.’’
As we read the letters, it will become obvious that the Spirit is not saying identical things to all the churches. Rather, although there may be some overlapping points, there is a message tailored to fit each individual congregation.
As local churches, we need to be prayerfully attentive to what the Lord is saying to us. So much is at stake.
May God help us to listen and obey.