God’s Reward?

Q.  In Revelation 3:12, Jesus said that he shall go no more out. What does that mean?

Joan McKenzie

A. Here’s a reply from Father Reginald Martin:

This part of the third chapter of Revelation (vv. 7-13) is addressed to the Church in Philadelphia, a city noted for wine production — and frequent, devastating earthquakes. These caused the city’s residents to flee to the countryside. Therefore, God’s promise to make the faithful believer a pillar in his temple, with the assurance “never shall he go out of it” (v. 12, RSV), would have been very welcome words.

The speaker in the book of Revelation praises Philadelphia’s faithfulness in the face of various trials, despite having few resources. The promise of physical safety is definitely part of God’s reward, but the moral stability that makes one an immovable part of God’s house is an even greater promise, and the Church’s early writers agree this appears to be the reward God promises here. Venerable Bede commented on these verses and said those who conquer trials become glorious in the temple of the church and need never again fear adversity.