The Book of Revelation Part 4: Smyrna and the Cult of Cybele
9 “‘I know your tribulation and your poverty (but you are rich) and the slander[a] of those who say that they are Jews and are not, but are a synagogue of Satan. 10 Do not fear what you are about to suffer. Behold, the devil is about to throw some of you into prison, that you may be tested, and for ten days you will have tribulation. Be faithful unto death, and I will give you the crown of life. 11 He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. The one who conquers will not be hurt by the second death.’-Revelation 2:8-11
Verse 8: Smyrna was, and is, an important strategic port city, located in modern Turkey, about thirty-five miles north of Ephesus. The city as John knew it is said to have been inspired by Alexander the Great, though it was actually built under Antigonus (316-301 B.C.) and Lysimachus (301-281 B.C.). The city had a temple to Zeus Akraios on the western slope of a rounded hill known as Pagos. Here again we have a potential connection to the Book of Enoch. If indeed, as Derek Gilbert suggests in his book Last Clash of the Titans, Zeus is actually Satan (Lucifer), then we have an actual temple to the ultimate adversary of Christians in close proximity to the church of Smyrna. Just outside the city, to the east, stood the temple of Cybele, a Mother Goddess whose rites including orgies. She was one of the Titans, known also as Rhea, which would also connect her to the Enochian history.
Today the city is known as Izmir.
The "angel" of Smyrna was most probably John's own disciple, Polycarp.
|Prophetic oracle at Smyrna.|
|The martyrdom of Polycarp|
Verse 11: Those who suffer for the Faith seem to be overcome by their enemies, but if they persevere to the end they are the real victors. They suffer death of the body, but ultimately win eternal life. "He that shall lose his life for my sake, shall find it." He need not fear the second death which is eternal damnation of body and soul.
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