1 “Write to the angel of the church in Sardis:
“The One who has the seven spirits of God and the seven stars says: I know your works; you have a reputation for being alive, but you are dead.
The church in Sardis seemed to those around them that they were very active in the activities of God but the Lord looks at the heart. The outward appearance seemed alive but inside their hearts, they were dying.
2 Be alert and strengthen what remains, which is about to die, for I have not found your works complete before My God.
The word alert in Greek means to be vigilant or watchful spiritually which is pertaining to obedience to God’s Word. The reason Jesus says this is because Satan looks for those who are asleep and not living according to God’s Word. Just like a lion which looks for the weakest prey amongst the group, so does Satan among those who profess faith in Jesus (1 Peter 5:8).
3 Remember, therefore, what you have received and heard; keep it, and repent. But if you are not alert, I will come like a thief, and you have no idea at what hour I will come against you.
Here we have those who are asleep spiritually by living in sin and Jesus is warning them to repent of their sinful lifestyle or else judgment will come upon them when they least expect it.
4 But you have a few people in Sardis who have not defiled their clothes, and they will walk with Me in white, because they are worthy.
This verse gives a contrast between those who are not alert to those who are. Apparently, the ones who are alert are those who have been washed by the blood of the Lamb. Only those who have been saved are given white clothes which make them worthy because of their faith in Jesus.
The logical conclusion is that if alertness describes having white clothes (sins were forgiven) then the opposite is true.
There are some in the church who have not truly placed their faith in Jesus Christ yet and it is evident by their lifestyle of sin and unrepentant heart.
Not everyone who goes to church is saved but the Holy Spirit is dealing with them, wanting them to repent and get saved before it’s too late.
5 In the same way, the victor will be dressed in white clothes, and I will never erase his name from the book of life but will acknowledge his name before My Father and before His angels.
The words “victor & white clothes” mean the same thing, salvation. Once a person puts their trust and faith in Jesus Christ, their names will never be removed from the Book of Life.