It is human nature to want to fit in. Nobody wants to be labeled as strange or weird. The flesh will always seek to compromise in order to “keep the peace.” But as Bible-believing Christians we need to realize that compromise and peace do not even exist in the same dictionary (2 Corinthians 6:14-18).
Pergamos was a church that refused to draw the line. As we will see they did things that were commendable, and even had a member that Jesus Himself called a “faithful martyr”. However, The Lord Jesus rebukes this congregation because they tolerated compromise doctrinally and morally, which is a sure recipe for disaster. That is one reason why Jesus introduces Himself to them as “He Who has the sharp two-edged sword” (Revelation 2:12).
God’s Word is two-edged (Hebrews 4:12) and needs to be rightly divided (2 Timothy 2:15). The message of redemption rightly divided is a gospel that clearly reveals a deliverance from this world, not a license to return to its vomit (2 Peter 2:20-22). God calls this present world system evil (Galatians 1:4). Solomon calls it vanity or emptiness (Ecclesiastes 1:2). That is why we are commanded by the apostle John to not love the world or the evil things within it (1 John 2:15-17).
The “doctrine of Balaam” was a doctrine that taught a cheap grace, a grace that even gave license to sinful living (Romans 6:1,2; Jude 3,4; 1 Peter 1:13 – 16). But the gospel of The Lord Jesus Christ delivers us from the power of darkness (Colossians 1:12,13; Acts 26:16-18). God’s will for every saint is sanctification (1 Thessalonians 4:3-7). Thus sound doctrine is vital for holy living. Pergamos was being corrupted by the immoral and ungodly doctrines of Balaam and the Nicolaitans (Revelation 2:15), which The Lord Jesus hates. The solution? Repent and submit to the teaching of God’s Word.
Saints, don’t tolerate a message that makes provision for the flesh (Romans 13:11-14). Seek God’s approval, not men’s (Galatians 1:10). Seek to be holy, not popular. May we submit ourselves to the authority of Scripture, and not fall prey to the false glamour of this fallen world!