“And to the angel of the church in Philadelphia write, ‘These things says He who is holy, He who is true, “He who has the key of David, He who opens and no one shuts, and shuts and no one opens”: “I know your works. See, I have set before you an open door, and no one can shut it; for you have a little strength, have kept My word, and have not denied My name. Indeed I will make those of the synagogue of Satan, who say they are Jews and are not, but lie — indeed I will make them come and worship before your feet, and to know that I have loved you. Because you have kept My command to persevere, I also will keep you from the hour of trial which shall come upon the whole world, to test those who dwell on the earth. Behold, I am coming quickly! Hold fast what you have, that no one may take your crown. He who overcomes, I will make him a pillar in the temple of My God, and he shall go out no more. I will write on him the name of My God and the name of the city of My God, the New Jerusalem, which comes down out of heaven from My God. And I will write on him My new name. “He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.”Revelation 3:7-13
In the book of Revelation chapter 3 from verses 7 to 13, Jesus spoke to the church in ancient Philadelphia, West Asia Minor, describing them as a faithful church; though they have little strength, but they remained faithful to His Word, and they have not denied Christ in their deeds. The church of Philadelphia is one of the seven churches in Revelation that received good commendation from Christ.
We also learned from Revelation 3:9, that one of the most palpable characteristics of the faithful church is that members will be tremendously added unto them. The Bible said people from the “synagogue of Satan”, i.e. the false churches, the liars, will lose their members to these faithful churches in the last days. The Lord said clearly, He will make them (people from false churches) come and worship before their feet (the faithful churches) and that these converts who migrate from false churches, will be able to see the truth and believe that God loves the churches that are faithful to Him.
Christ also promised the faithful churches in Revelation 3:10, that they will be kept from the hour of trial that is coming. Note the words that Jesus used in this verse; that they WILL BE KEPT from the hour of trial, and He did not say that they will have to go through the trial. The faithful churches in the last days are the ones that will be spared and skipped from trials and testings.
This literally means that faithful churches are shielded and exempted from God’s wrath in the last days as opposed to the rest that are likely going to be put through the tests and tribulations, to refine and purify them before actual glorification. Therefore, we should be able to identify them, the faithful churches, as people who need not suffer when pestilence invaded the land, or they will likely still have water, food and provisions when famine strikes. People from faithful churches are also the ones who need not fear death, as thousands and tens of thousands may fall, but death shall not come near them (Psalm 91:7). These fearless people are affirmed as faithful people who abide and trust in Him (Psalm 91:1-2).
The faithful churches are also the ones that HAVE BEEN GIVEN their crowns. In 1 Corinthians 9:25, the Bible tells us that the “crown” is an imperishable wreath. And in 2 Timothy 4:8, it is the “crown” of righteousness. Likewise, another pertinent characteristic of people from faithful churches is this; they are very likely to be people who understood God’s righteousness both in action and in words, they speak and do righteousness before men, in contrast to those who only honor God with their lips but having hearts that are far from the truth and from God’s righteousness (Matthew 15:8).
Jesus also warned people from faithful churches, to hold fast to their crown of righteousness, that no one may take away their crown. He who overcomes (he who successfully guard his crown of righteousness), he will be made a pillar in the temple of God, and he shall no longer wander in the wilderness. Revelation 3:12.
Examples Of Faithful Churches
One of the methods I use to gauge exemplary churches is that it must have more than one serving pastor holding a decent track record of preaching sound doctrines. This might not be the perfect approach, but unless there are several good preachers in a team, each playing the role to balance the others, and unless they keep each other continually in check and holding one another to high standards, the probability of an organization falling to become a false church is very conceivable, and very likely to happen.
In the United States, some notable examples of organizations holding on to sound doctrine, faithfulness to Godly righteousness and with numbers increasingly added unto them, include – the Grace Community Church in California led by John MacArthur, Heartcry Missionary headed by Paul Washer and OnePassion Ministries by Dr Steve Lawson.
In Malaysia, good examples include the Full Gospel Assembly located at Goodwood Gardens, Kuala Lumpur and the Damansara Utama Methodist Church in Petaling Jaya, Selangor. And in Singapore, the City Harvest Church headed by Kong Hee – the once touted “corrupt” church that today appears to be rapidly changing and fitting itself more as a faithful church than not. These are just some names of the better ones I could think of for now, but there may be more that are yet to be discovered by this blog.
In most of these organizations, we will usually find sound biblical doctrines being taught, communities that are abundantly blessed by God and their numbers are rapidly increasing, especially in these final days before the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Not only that these faithful churches are abundantly blessed, but believers from other churches will migrate and join them, leaving false churches eventually desolate (Matthew 23:38-39), because they saw and found God’s love in the faithful churches (Revelation 3:9). This is a biblical truth that is difficult even for pastors from faithful churches to preach at the pulpit without offending other churches around them, but the impartial standing enjoyed by this blog, enables us to report and explain this without fear or favor, and given the option to assess the facts more objectively.