Journey by Lamplight A visit to the seven churches of Asia — Part 4 -- By: Paul W. Wallace
BSP 5:4 (Autumn 1976) p. 101
Journey by Lamplight
A visit to the seven churches of Asia — Part 4
Philadelphia — The City Of The Open Door
And to the angel of the church in Philadelphia write: “The words of the holy one, the true one, who has the key of David, who opens and no one shall shut, who shuts and no one opens.
“I know your works. Behold, I have set before you an open door, which no one is able to shut; I know that you have but little power, and yet you have kept my word and have not denied my name. Behold, I will make those of the synagogue of Satan who say that they are Jews and are not, but lie — behold, I will make them come and bow down before your feet, and learn that I have loved you. Because you have kept my word of patient endurance, I will keep you from the hour of trial which is coming on the whole world, to try those who dwell upon the earth. I am coming soon; hold fast what you have, so that no one may seize your crown. He who conquers, I will make him a pillar in the temple of my God; never shall he go out of it, and I will write on him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, the new Jerusalem which comes down from my God out of heaven, and my own new name. He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.” (Rev. 3:7–13)
Up the Cogamis valley, 28 miles to the southeast from Sardis, lies Philadelphia. This valley begins at the coast at Smyrna, and Philadelphia is the city at the opposite (eastern) end. East of Philadelphia the terrain rises until it becomes the great central plateau of Asia Minor. The mountains which form the Cogamis valley represent the western rim of this plateau. The Cogamis valley is therefore a funnel leading to the plateau.
The city was founded by Attalus II Philadelphus (159-138 B.C.), from whom it was also named, although a local tradition ascribed its founding to Egyptians (Test. 3). Attalus’ purpose in founding the
BSP 5:4 (Autumn 1976) p. 102
city where he did was presumably to establish a relationship with the cities of the plateau to the east, for all traffic from northern Phrygia to the Aegean would have run past Philadelphia.
BSP 5:4 (Autumn 1976) p. 103
The city has almost no history and is rarely mentioned in ancient literature. It was situated near the Katacecaumene (Bu...
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