Read verses 10-11
Q: What is the reciprocity expressed in v.10?
A: Because “you have kept the word of My perseverance, I also will keep you from the hour of testing”.
Q: Why is the Word connected to “perseverance”?
A: Philadelphia did not merely read or even study Scripture, but put it into practice and thus lived it. It wasn’t just informational but practical.
Application: Those whose choices, decisions, and behavior strictly conform to God’s Word will find that they will successfully ßendure and overcome this world by the Word.
Q: What and when is the “hour of testing”?
A: There are two very important details which need to be properly understood in order to interpret this correctly:
- It will “come upon the whole world”. It is not confined to a single location or limited to a few select nations or groups.
- The purpose is “to test those who dwell on earth”.
This is speaking of one of the most featured aspects in God’s Word when it comes the End Times: “the day of the Lord”.
Point: “The day of the Lord” is that time when all that remains is the pouring out of God’s wrath, from which believers are exempt.
For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men who suppress the truth in unrighteousness,
Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from the wrath of God through Him.
For God has not destined us for wrath, but for obtaining salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ,
1 Thessalonians 5:9
Q: But isn’t that “hour of testing” the whole final week of years?
A: The specification that it is only for “those who dwell on the earth” consigns it to that phase closing out those 7 years known as “the day of the Lord”.
Point: “Those who dwell on earth” is a common designation found within God’s prophetic Word which refers to those who have not accepted Christ as Savior—that is, those associated with rejecting the Messiah. (Rev. 6:10; 8:13; 11:10; 13:8, 14; 17:2, 8)
Q: What is the warning given to Philadelphia?
A: “I am coming quickly”.
Q: So how are they to prepare for His return?
A: “…hold fast what you have, so that no one will take your crown.”
Application: Just as persecution must be endured, likewise faithfulness must continue uninterrupted to the very end. This is the only way to escape “the hour of testing” and secure the crown of our salvation.