Revelation 1: 12:20:
"Then I turned to see the voice that spoke with me. And having turned I saw seven golden lampstands, and in the midst of the seven lampstands One like the Son of Man, clothed with a garment down to the feet and girded about the chest with a golden band. His head and hair were white like wool, as white as snow, and His eyes like a flame of fire; His feet were like fine brass, as if refined in a furnace, and His voice as the sound of many waters; He had in His right hand seven stars, out of His mouth went a sharp two-edged sword, and His countenance was like the sun shining in its strength. And when I saw Him, I fell at His feet as dead. But He laid His right hand on me, saying to me,* "Do not be afraid; I am the First and the Last. I am He who lives, and was dead, and behold, I am alive forevermore. Amen. And I have the keys of Hades and of Death. Write* the things which you have seen, and the things which are, and the things which will take place after this. The mystery of the seven stars which you saw in My right hand, and the seven golden lampstands: The seven stars are the angels of the seven churches, and the seven lampstands which you saw* are the seven churches".
The Apostle John was now in exile on the Isle of Patmos, banished there by the Roman authorities for the "Word of God and the "Testimony of Jesus Christ" While in banishment, John hears a voice saying to him:
" I am Alpha and Omega, the first and the last: and, What thou seest, write in a book, and send it unto the seven churches which are in Asia; unto Ephesus, and unto Smyrna, and unto Pergamos, and unto Thyatira, and unto Sardis, and unto Philadelphia, and unto Laodicea".
Afterwards, the Bible said John looked around having heard the majestic voice of Jesus Christ he saw seven "golden candlesticks," seven lampstand and seven "stars". These seven lamps represented the seven churches, in which the light of God was continually shining, and the love of God continually burning. And they are here represented as golden, in order to show how "precious" they were in the sight of God. The "stars" are afterward interpreted as representing the seven "angels", "messengers", or the "bishops" of the seven churches. The reason these "stars" of messengers are shown being in the right hand of Christ is because this shows us all that they are under his special care and most powerful protection. They are to proclaim The Word of God as led by the Holy Ghost. The Bible said "Out of his mouth (Christ) went a sharp "two-edged sword"! John here in this passage conveys to us that this is no doubt intended to point out the judgments about to be pronounced by Christ against the rebellious Jews and persecuting Romans; God's judgments were just now going to fall upon both. The sharp two-edged sword may represent the word of God in general, according to that saying of the apostle, (Hebrews 4:12): "The Word of God is quick and powerful, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, etc. And the Word of God is termed the sword of the Spirit, (Ephesians 6:17). "the ministers" of the seven churches, who are under his direction, have all their light and influence from him, and are secured and preserved by him.
There is not a Christian service held, of which we are not authorized to say, The Lord is there. He is in his churches, not only by his word, but also by his sacraments, by his ministers, by his authority, power and Spirit. He is there himself, as the Son of man. He is present as Priest, as Lord, as Judge; and hence, in his own proper person, as the God-man. There is another, nearer, and more manifest presence, to be realized when he shall come again; but not more true or real than that by which he is even now in the midst of us. Were these dull, dim senses of ours but unlocked and energized, after the style of that transformation for which the saints are taught to look, we would see our Saviour, present tonight, as really as John saw him "walking in the midst of the seven golden candlesticks" according to Revelation 1:20 thru 2:1. It is a solemn and startling thought; but it is true.
Christ walks among the candlesticks, but Jesus Christ also holds every called minister in his right hand. The "democratic idea" of church organization, which make the claim that all power (authority)proceed from the members in so many ways attempts to make the position of minister or Pastor nothing more another Christian with a "glorified" title.,While in most institutional churches, each member has the right and expresses the power of voice and vote, at times they forget that God called the minister and not them. Ministers positionally have both relations to Christ and also to the Church, which make them more than an ordinary church members. The "called" preacher/pastor partake directly of Christ's authority, and are responsible directly to him, and are upheld by his right hand. (undergirded by Christ's intrinsic authority), This makes their fate beyond the power of human beings or angels to displace them. What a lesson for ministers, as to the holiness of their office, the solemnity of their responsibilities, the necessity of unswerving fidelity, and the exercise of every confidence in their sacred functions.
Again, the ministers are in Christ's hand. If they are unfaithful to Christ and to their divine call, no one can deliver them out of Christ's "divine" hand. Conversely, if the called minister remains true to their calling and position in Christ, walking in obedience to Jesus, nobody can touch them, or quench their light. They shall shine as the stars forever and ever. What a lesson for the people as to the authority of those ministrations which they are so prone to despise. Dealing with the regular ministers of the churches, you are dealing with the jewels on Christ's right hand.TOUCH NOT THE "ANNOINTED' OF GOD AND DO HIS MINISTERS ABSOLUTELY NO HARM!
And what a lesson for all as to the divine majesty and glory of our Lord! The Pauls, and Johns, and Husses, and Luthers, and Cranmers, and Knoxes, and Wesleys, and all the hosts of those who have been teaching and guiding the churches for these 1,800 years, are no more than the rings upon his fingers. But the ministers are jewels to him. Jesus holds them as precious. Disregarded as they ususally are by people, the called ministers are dear to him. He holds them, as a man holds what he most esteems. He holds them, for service now, and for judgment when he cometh. He holds them, for success against the hosts of evil, for glorious honor if they are faithful, and for eternal disgrace if they are not.
The churches are compared to candlesticks, because they hold forth the light of the gospel to advantage. The churches are not candles: Christ only is our light, and his gospel our lamp; but they receive their light from Christ and the gospel, and hold it forth to others. They are golden candlesticks, for they should be precious and pure, comparable to fine gold; not only the ministers, but the members of the churches ought to be such; their light should so shine before men as to engage others to give glory to God.
Finally, the word translated "angel" occurs seventy-six times in the Revelation. Fundamentally, the word means messenger. Some believe this simply refers to some leading person in each church; others say that this implies that each church has its representative angel in heaven. These "angels" are at least the ones through whom these messages are to be conveyed to the seven churches.