Bible Reading: 1 John 4:2-3
Among the seven churches of Asia Minor, the church of Philadelphia was the one church for which Christ had no condemnation, but only commendation. For this reason, it is known as the church that Jesus loved. In Revelation 3:8, Jesus commends the church in Philadelphia because it “had not denied [His] name.” Every church that Jesus loves is one that does not deny His name. Regardless of the hostility of this world or the severity of the persecution suffered at its hands, the church that Jesus loves will not be silenced in its proclamation of the Gospel or in its public profession of Jesus Christ!
O’Henry is a well-known short story author famous for his surprise endings. Before becoming a successful author, O’Henry was a jailbird. He actually decided to pursue a career in writing while incarcerated. His cellmate at the time was an elderly man everyone called “O’Henry.” When released from jail, the now famous writer requested and received permission to use his cellmate’s moniker as his pen name. On his way out the jailhouse door, his elderly cellmate yelled at him, “Take care of the name.”
The job of the church and the Christian in the world today is to take care of the name; the name of Jesus! Every church loved by Christ and every professed believer who truly loves Christ will do so. Any “church” that denies His name and any “Christian” who refuses to publicly profess it are proven spurious. They’re of the devil, seized by the spirit of antichrist, void of the Spirit of God, and bear a most distinguishing mark of a hypocrite.