How did Pastor Armstrong arrive at the meaning of the names of the Seven Churches in Revelation? I am having trouble finding those definitions in my own research.
Some of the meanings of the names of the Seven Churches provided in our Revelation Study can be determined through the etymology of the names themselves, while in other cases Pastor Armstrong relied on the work of other scholars, who have researched the meaning.
The sources for determining the meaning of each city name are provided below:
- Smyrna ("myrrh") - from the Greek word smurna, meaning myrrh
- Pergamum ("married") - from the Greek word pergamos, which is a combination of two Greek words: pergos and gamos. These words combine to mean either "citadel" or "united by marriage."
- Thyatira ("sacrifice") - a Greek word meaning "the castle of Thya." An alternative meaning of "sacrifice offering" was suggested by "Hitchcock’s New and Complete Analysis of the Holy Bible" and by Dr. Arnold Fruchtenbaum in his book "Footsteps of the Messiah."
- Sardis ("escaping") - Three meanings have been proposed: "prince of joy," "that which remains," and "those escaping." We relied on Dr. Fruchtenbaum's scholarship which supports "escaping."
- Philadelphia ("brotherly love") - From the Greek word philadelphos, meaning "brotherly love."
- Laodecia ("people ruling") - From the Greek word laodikeia, which is a combination of two Greeks words: laos (meaning peoples) and dike (meaning justice or judgment).