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Write The Vision. - General
Written by Warren W. Wiersbe   

The Following is an excerpt from "Pastors and the Church Part 1."

Special Note :

¶ The Deeds and Doctrine of the Nicolaitans affords the following explanation from Warren W. Wiersbe .

Commentry on Revelation 2:6 . The Church at Ephesus. "The Deeds of the Nicolaitans ".

¶ Ephesian Christians separated themselves not only from false doctrine but also from false deeds (Rev. 2:6 ). The word Nicolaitan means "to conquer the people." Some Bible students believe this was a sect who "lorded it over" the church and robbed the people of their liberty in Christ (see 3 John` 9-11). They initiated what we know today as "clergy" and "laity," a false division that is taught nowhere in the New Testament. All God's people are "kings and priests" (1 Peter 2:9; Rev. 1:6) and have equal access to the Father through the blood of Christ (Heb. 10:19ff). We shall meet this dangerous sect again when we study the message to the church at Pergamos .

Commentry on Revelation` 2:15. The Church at Pergamos and "The Doctrine of the Nicolaitans ".

¶ "Despite their courageous stand against persecution, the believers in Pergamos were not faultless before the Lord. Satan had not been able to destroy them by coming as the roaring lion (1 Peter` 5:8), but he was making inroads as the deceiving serpent. A group of compromising people had infiltrated the church fellowship, and Jesus Christ hated their doctrines and their practices.

These infiltrators are called "Nicolaitans ," whom we met already at Ephesus (Rev`. 2:6 ). The name means "to rule the people." What they taught is called "the doctrine of Balaam" (Rev. 2:14.). The Hebrew name Balaam also means "lord of the people" and is probably synonymous with Nicolaitans . Sadly, this group of professed believers "lorded it over" the people and led them astray.

Understanding the story of Balaam helps us interpret this insidious group more accurately (see Num. 22-25). Balaam was a true prophet who prostituted his gifts in order to earn money from King Balak , who hired him to curse the people of Israel. God prevented Balaam from actually cursing the nation—in fact, God turned the curses into blessings!—but Balak still got his money's worth. How? By following Balaam's advice.... (Israel) ate meat from idolatrous altars and committed fornication as part of heathen religious rites".

Warren Wiersbe. Bible Exposition Commentary (BE Series) - New Testament - Volume 2. (WORDsearch Bible program.)

¶ Administrator Comment: How grave is this matter today of the Church being plundered, and it is amazing that the congregations of people are unaware that they are being dealt with as merchandise! [2 peter 2:3 .] Balaam was a spiritual man but covetous and his 'spiritual' service was for personal gain. For his trouble he suffered death! How awful is the connection that Jesus makes between Balaam and the doctrine of the Nicolaitanes. There is an evil and subtle parallel. Balaam manipulated the saints in sin. The Nicolaitanes had ambitions of manipulation for the many gains of position and power over the people. Horror of horrors, they formed a 'doctrine' to substantiate this higher level of position, title and honour among the saints of God. Of course money and paid professionalism is a subtle part of all of this, but false doctrine, by the use of scripture is used as a camouflage of the covetous aspirations of position, honour and monetary benefit. No wonder Jesus, who gave all of himself and Heaven's glory for the saints, hates such doctrine of lies and the pride of man in the Church. Paul said -

"For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, that ye through his poverty might be rich". [2 Corinthians 8:9.]
Can we stretch our imagination to think that the Lord is proud to behold men parading themselves in robes and dress and any notation of their position and honour among men? Did Jesus set the standard of being impressive in his own person? Is the cross of Jesus a close comparison of men today, in the grandeur of titled positions of power in the Church?

How great is "the falling away" in these last days as we look for that glorious appearing of our great God and Saviour, Jesus Christ. [Titus 2:13 .]