Synagogue of Satan

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Just as the Pharisees and Sadducees justified what they were doing with religious rhetoric and great swelling words[1] about what they believed, modern Christians are praying at the altars of the Fathers of the earth, They strain at gnats while swallowing camels.[2]

In Revelation 2:9[3] and in Chapter 3 verse 9[4] we see a reference to the Synagogue of Satan which is a reference to a congregation of people who claimed to be Jews but were not.

The Christians at that time thought of themselves as Jews and Jesus as the king of the Jews. That is why they called Jesus the Christ, because Christ means anointed, the same as the Hebrew word Messiah, and the kings of Israel were anointed. Jesus was the highest son of David and therefore He was the rightful anointed king. Those who said they had no king but Caesar and did not accept Jesus as the Christ could say they were Jews, but to the followers of the King they were no longer Jews. But because they continued to do the opposite of what Jesus the king commanded, they were considered to be the adversaries of Christ.

The word Satan[5] does mean adversary in the Greek and in Hebrew. Those who were not with Christ, following His way were considered against him and will be scattered.[6]

There were others who did things in the name of Christ but did not gather with Jesus' appointed Church.[7] But Jesus told the Church not to forbid or hinder them, if they are not actually against the Called out.[8]

Those called the Synagogue of Satan were against Christ and the appointed Church, and they would eventually kill James and persecute the followers of Christ.

Presbyterian Church, like many other denominations, is often a top-down organization. It is a General Assembly at the national level.  Then, Synods that reported to General Assembly for each region.  Then, Presbyteries reported to the Synods.  And, then, Sessions (a group of elected Elders) in each church that reported to Presbyteries. 

When I first heard this, I knew that the Greek word Presbyter was the word for elder and an elder was the head of a family. We see elders being appointed to some position or task in the Church. What were those tasks?

Over the centuries, things have moved away from the model used by Christ for His Church. We should instinctively know that this highly centralized hierarchical model is not what Christ established.  But, many do not. We may need to change the way we think about Church altogether.

Christ's way was different than the way of the world which was not bearing fruit.

What was that alternative?

Who is the head of the Church?[9]

If Christ is the head of the Church and the corner stone of the living temple of God, then who is second in command?

That would be you.

You are not to rule over your neighbor, but only yourself. But still, Christians were clearly organized over a vast area of the Roman Empire and beyond. How can this be?

It is very clear that Jesus chose to call out certain men and appoint the kingdom to them. They were not only told to not exercise authority one over the other, but Jesus taught them to take care of the needy and feed his sheep through the exercise of of charity. He also commanded those chosen disciples to make the people sit down in small companies of tens in ranks of one hundred until they were all networked.

These small companies of tens functioned like home churches, meaning they consisted of about ten families who could gather as free assemblies or congregations. But in order for them to "rightly divided bread from house to house in a daily ministration of Charity, it was important to network. As the rightful minister of Jesus the Christ, the ministers of the called out did this in the Temple.[10]

The word "rank" is from the Greek word prasia from a Hebrew idiom.[11] This has nothing to do with rank of authority but a way to network the different groups of ten so that there can be a proper division of the bread from house to house. Without that network the daily ministration -- especially over the whole Roman Empire, as we see being done in Acts -- would be impossible. Each company of elders would pick one elder to gather together with nine men like himself to create a small group of ten men who could oversee a righteous distribution to a hundred.

The Emperors and Senators of Rome were the Conscripted fathers who were "Men called father upon the earth". They held the office of Parens Patriae. The temples of Rome and Judea were all providing government services and the welfare of society. Because people today imagine that religion is "what you think about God", they are brought under a Strong delusion so that they believe a lie.

Religion was always what you did and do about the natural moral duty to God and your fellow man and Pure Religion was doing that without looking to the rulers of the world who are the conscripted fathers of the earth. You either take care of the needs of society through faith, hope, and charity, or you do it through men who exercise authority one over the other through force, fear and violence. While the Father who art in heaven provides daily bread through charity and its participants are the kingdom of God, the "fathers of the earth" use force, taxation and intimidation etc and they are the synagogue of Satan.[12]

There were different factions at the altars in Judea vying for power and control. Some said "they are Jews, and are not, but are the synagogue of Satan"[13].

Many will say they are Christians according to Christ, but they are actually workers of iniquity. To be a denomination of Christ, you must simply conform to Christ. Most all denominations today who claim Christ are actually doing many things condemned by Christ and they will not do what He commanded.

Being a congregant with His Church does not limit your gathering with any other Church or group. Any denomination that wants you to exclusively attend their gatherings is attempting to exercise authority over your activities. No one should desire to belong to a denomination, but everyone should desire to belong to God.

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  1. 2 Peter 2:18 For when they speak great swelling [words] of vanity, they allure through the lusts of the flesh, [through much] wantonness, those that were clean escaped from them who live in error. While they promise them liberty, they themselves are the servants of corruption: for of whom a man is overcome, of the same is he brought in bondage. 20 For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning.
    Jude 1:16 These are murmurers, complainers, walking after their own lusts; and their mouth speaketh great swelling words, having men’s persons in admiration because of advantage.
  2. Matthew 23:24 [Ye] blind guides, which strain at a gnat, and swallow a camel. 25 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye make clean the outside of the cup and of the platter, but within they are full of extortion and excess. 26 Thou blind Pharisee, cleanse first that which is within the cup and platter, that the outside of them may be clean also. 27 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are like unto whited sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men’s bones, and of all uncleanness. 28 Even so ye also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within ye are full of hypocrisy and iniquity.
  3. Revelation 2:9 I know thy works, and tribulation, and poverty, (but thou art rich) and I know the blasphemy of them which say they are Jews, and are not, but are the synagogue of Satan.
  4. Revelation 3:9 Behold, I will make them of the synagogue of Satan, which say they are Jews, and are not, but do lie; behold, I will make them to come and worship before thy feet, and to know that I have loved thee.
  5. 4567 ~Σατανᾶς~ Satanas \@sat-an-as’\@ of Aramaic origin corresponding to 4566 (with the definite affix); TDNT-7:151,1007; {See TDNT 703} n pr m AV-Satan 36; 36
    1) adversary (one who opposes another in purpose or act), the name given to
    1a) the prince of evil spirits, the inveterate adversary of God and Christ
    1a1) he incites apostasy from God and to sin
    1a2) circumventing men by his wiles
    1a3) the worshippers of idols are said to be under his control
    1a4) by his demons he is able to take possession of men and inflict them with diseases
    1a5) by God’s assistance he is overcome
    1a6) on Christ’s return from heaven he will be bound with chains for a thousand years, but when the thousand years are finished he will walk the earth in yet greater power, but shortly after will be given over to eternal punishment
    1b) a Satan-like man
  6. Matthew 12:30 He that is not with me is against me; and he that gathereth not with me scattereth abroad.
    Luke 11:23 He that is not with me is against me: and he that gathereth not with me scattereth.
  7. Luke 9:49 And John answered and said, Master, we saw one casting out devils in thy name; and we forbad him, because he followeth not with us.
  8. Mark 9:39 But Jesus said, Forbid him not: for there is no man which shall do a miracle in my name, that can lightly speak evil of me. Luke 9:50 And Jesus said unto him, Forbid him not: for he that is not against us is for us. 40 For he that is not against us is on our part.
  9. Ephesians 5:23 For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body. Colossians 1:18 And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence. Colossians 2:10 And ye are complete in him, which is the head of all principality and power: Colossians 2:19 And not holding the Head, from which all the body by joints and bands having nourishment ministered, and knit together, increaseth with the increase of God. 1 Peter 2:7 Unto you therefore which believe he is precious: but unto them which be disobedient, the stone which the builders disallowed, the same is made the head of the corner,
  10. Acts 2:46 And they, continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart,
  11. 4237 ~πρασιά~ prasia \@pras-ee-ah’\@ perhaps from prason (a leek, and so an onion-patch); ; n f AV-in ranks 1, not tr. 1; 2
    1) a plot of ground, a garden bed
    2) Hebrew idiom i.e. they reclined in ranks or divisions, so that several ranks formed, as it were separate plots
  12. Revelation 2:9 I know thy works, and tribulation, and poverty, (but thou art rich) and I know the blasphemy of them which say they are Jews, and are not, but are the synagogue of Satan. [Today this would include those who say they are Christians
    Revelation 3:9 Behold, I will make them of the synagogue of Satan, which say they are Jews, and are not, but do lie; behold, I will make them to come and worship before thy feet, and to know that I have loved thee.
  13. Revelation 2:9 I know thy works, and tribulation, and poverty, (but thou art rich) and I know the blasphemy of them which say they are Jews, and are not, but are the synagogue of Satan.
    Revelation 3:9 Behold, I will make them of the synagogue of Satan, which say they are Jews, and are not, but do lie; behold, I will make them to come and worship before thy feet, and to know that

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