We should applaud those members of Churches who though they might feel their Church or denomination has lost its way they remain faithful and continue to worship and bring their witness by staying. Sardis shows us that even if you are in a Church that has lost its way it doesn’t mean you have!
Before we read these next verses it is worth noting the following. At this time the people who worshipped false deities would approach their temples wearing white and within their cities when a citizen was about to face the death penalty their name would be blotted from the register of that city so that it would not stain its reputation.
“Yet you have a few people in Sardis who have not soiled their clothes. They will walk with me, dressed in white, for they are worthy. 5 The one who is victorious will, like them, be dressed in white. I will never blot out the name of that person from the book of life, but will acknowledge that name before my Father and his angels. 6 Whoever has ears, let them hear what the Spirit says to the churches.” (Revelation 3 v 4-6)
You’re one of the few.
You walk with Jesus and you do so continually battling against sin knowing this journey is marked by the cleansing work of the cross for your life. Our whole life of discipleship is less about your performance and more about His work on the cross. This is the only way for the soiled clothes to be white. We will not have arrived until we walk with him beyond this life.
Your name is never blotted out. There must have been some thought to Exodus 32:32-33 when Moses offered to have his name blotted out of God’s book for the sin of His people. In the same way Jesus stood for us in our place of execution and took this punishment upon Him.
You will be acknowledged in heaven. We are immediately taken back to the same phrase Jesus had already spoken to his disciples (Matt 10:32). Living life as a disciple, one of the few, means the hard work of holding on will be repaid in full. Whatever happens here happens there for you.