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pageId="iii"The Catholic Study Bible A special version of the New American Bible, with a wealth of background information useful to Catholics.

Chapter 2

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Text Commentary

To Ephesus. 1*“To the angel of the church in Ephesus, write this:

“ ‘The one who holds the seven stars in his right hand and walks in the midst of the seven gold lampstands says this: 2*“I know your works, your labor, and your endurance, and that you cannot tolerate the wicked; you have tested those who call themselves apostles but are not, and discovered that they are impostors. 3Moreover, you have endurance and have suffered for my name, and you have not grown weary. 4Yet I hold this against you: you have lost the love you had at first. 5Realize how far you have fallen. Repent, and do the works you did at first. Otherwise, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place, unless you repent. 6*But you have this in your favor: you hate the works of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate.

7k 11, 17, 29; 3:6, 13, 22; 13:9; Mt 11:15.*“ ‘ “ Whoever has ears ought to hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To the victor I will give the right to eat from the tree of life that is in the garden of God.” ’

To Smyrna. 8*“To the angel of the church in Smyrna, write this:

“ ‘The first and the last, who once died but came to life, says this: 9l Jas 2:5.*“I know your tribulation and poverty, but you are rich. I know the slander of those who claim to be Jews and are not, but rather are members of the assembly of Satan. 10Do not be afraid of anything that you are going to suffer. Indeed, the devil will throw some of you into prison, that you may be tested, and you will face an ordeal for ten days. Remain faithful until death, and I will give you the crown of life.

11m 20:6, 14; 21:8.* “ ‘ “Whoever has ears ought to hear what the Spirit says to the churches. The victor shall not be harmed by the second death.” ’

To Pergamum. 12*“To the angel of the church in Pergamum, write this:

“ ‘The one with the sharp two-edged sword says this: 13*“I know that you live where Satan’s throne is, and yet you hold fast to my name and have not denied your faith in me, not even in the days of Antipas, my faithful witness, who was martyred among you, where Satan lives. 14n Nm 22–24; 25:1–3; 31:16; 2 Pt 2:15; Jude 11.*Yet I have a few things against you. You have some people there who hold to the teaching of Balaam, who instructed Balak to put a stumbling block before the Israelites: to eat food sacrificed to idols and to play the harlot. 15Likewise, you also have some people who hold to the teaching of [the] Nicolaitans. 16Therefore, repent. Otherwise, I will come to you quickly and wage war against them with the sword of my mouth.

17o Is 62:2; 65:15.*“ ‘ “Whoever has ears ought to hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To the victor I shall give some of the hidden manna; I shall also give a white amulet upon which is inscribed a new name, which no one knows except the one who receives it.” ’

To Thyatira. 18*“To the angel of the church in Thyatira, write this:

“ ‘The Son of God, whose eyes are like a fiery flame and whose feet are like polished brass, says this: 19“I know your works, your love, faith, service, and endurance, and that your last works are greater than the first. 20*Yet I hold this against you, that you tolerate the woman Jezebel, who calls herself a prophetess, who teaches and misleads my servants to play the harlot and to eat food sacrificed to idols. 21I have given her time to repent, but she refuses to repent of her harlotry. 22So I will cast her on a sickbed and plunge those who commit adultery with her into intense suffering unless they repent of her works. 23p 1 Sm 16:7; Jer 11:20; 17:10.*I will also put her children to death. Thus shall all the churches come to know that I am the searcher of hearts and minds and that I will give each of you what your works deserve. 24*But I say to the rest of you in Thyatira, who do not uphold this teaching and know nothing of the so-called deep secrets of Satan: on you I will place no further burden, 25except that you must hold fast to what you have until I come.

26q 12:5; Ps 2:8–9.*“ ‘ “To the victor, who keeps to my ways until the end, I will give authority over the nations. 27He will rule them with an iron rod. Like clay vessels will they be smashed,

28just as I received authority from my Father. And to him I will give the morning star.

29“ ‘ “Whoever has ears ought to hear what the Spirit says to the churches.” ’

Notes:

k: 11, 17, 29; 3:6, 13, 22; 13:9; Mt 11:15.

l: Jas 2:5.

m: 20:6, 14; 21:8.

n: Nm 22–24; 25:1–3; 31:16; 2 Pt 2:15; Jude 11.

o: Is 62:2; 65:15.

p: 1 Sm 16:7; Jer 11:20; 17:10.

q: 12:5; Ps 2:8–9.

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