Archives for October 20, 2021

Greece and Turkey – Day 8

On Tuesday, October 12, we visited the ancient remains of three of the seven churches in modern-day Turkey that received letters from Christ In Revelation 2 and 3 via the apostle John. 

First, we visited the ancient remains of Smyrna, which today is the port city of Izmir, Turkey, with a present population of 4.5 million (picture #1). Smyrna is still being excavated and was known for being a suffering church that was greatly blessed by Christ in NT times. Christ had no word of reproof for these strong believers. It was moving to be there, knowing of Smyrna’s faithfulness, even though the archeological remains here were not as overwhelmingly impressive as in Ephesus. 

The seven churches of Asia were located on a clockwise, circular mail delivery route in the time of John and Paul. So, our next stop was Pergamum known in biblical times as Pergamus. We took a cable car to the very windy and scenic hilltop of this dramatic archeological site (picture #2). Many gods were represented in this ancient worldly city where Jesus said that Satan’s seat is. Happily, there was a faithful remnant in Pergamus, including Antipas, Christ’s “faithful martyr.” We also visited the temple of Dionysus and the medical center of Asclepius, which was on a lower level, near the present day city of Bergma. Here we took a group picture (picture #3) and got a spontaneous shot of a gypsy leading his sheep and goats, all the while talking to them (picture #4). Shortly after he was feeding the lead goat, the goat butted him in the back.

(Thyatira to follow in the next post.)

Greece and Turkey – Day 16

Monday afternoon, October 11, we drove to Sardis, Turkey, one of the seven churches of Asia that was known for its spiritual deadness, with the exception of a faithful remnant. The Jewish synagogue where Paul probably preached was being renovated so we could only see the outside (picture #1).

The gymnasium, built during the Byzantine Period is nearby (picture #2). On the other side of town is a small fourth century Byzantine chapel that the Christians built on the ruins of the Temple of Artemis (picture #3).