II. To the church in Smyrna (vs 8 – 11).
“….These things saith the first and the last, which was dead, and is alive;  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.  Fear none of those things which thou shalt suffer: behold, the devil shall cast some of you into prison, that ye may be tried; and ye shall have tribulation ten days: be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life.  He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; He that overcometh shall not be hurt of the second death.” Revelation 2:8-11 KJV
He takes notice of the improvement they had made in their spiritual lives.
“…be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life.”
I’m glad he said it, one day we shall all die, and a crown of life awaits only those faithful unto death, those poor in this world, but rich in the spirituals; poor in spirit but rich in grace.
Sometimes your outward poverty is key for your spiritual riches, don’t you despise it. “For who hath despised the day of small things? for they shall rejoice, and shall see the plummet in the hand of Zerubbabel with those seven; they are the eyes of the Lord , which run to and fro through the whole earth.” Zechariah 4:10
Many who are rich in the things of this world are most likely poor in spiritual things. Some who are poor outwardly are inwardly rich, rich in faith and in good works, rich in hope and rich in God. Spiritual riches are usually the reward of great diligence; the diligent hand makes rich. Where there is spiritual plenty, outward poverty may be better borne; and when God’s people are impoverished, for the sake of Christ and a good conscience, he makes all up for them in spiritual riches, which are much more satisfying and enduring.
“…I know thy works, and tribulation, and poverty…”
Like I always say, those who will be faithful to Christ must expect to go through many tribulations, do not turn them away for Jesus Christ takes particular notice of all your troubles.
When in affliction, he is also afflicted with you, and he will recompense tribulation to those who trouble you.
“…I know the blasphemy of those that say they are Jews, but are not…”
He knows all those who pretends to be somewhat when they’re nothing.
Be thou faithful to death, and I will give thee a crown of life. He has said it that is able to do it; and he has undertaken that he will do it. They shall have the reward from his own hand, and none of their enemies shall be able to wrest it out of his hand, or to pull it from their heads.
A crown of life, to reward those who are faithful even unto death, who are faithful till they die, and who part with life itself in fidelity to Christ. The life laid down in his cause, shall be rewarded with another and a much better life that shall be eternal.