Smyrna Ruins

July 11, 2014

Smyrna Agora
(photo credit: Brian Kaylor
I visited some ruins of Smyrna yesterday. One of the seven cities in Revelation, Smyrna is today known as Izmir, Turkey (for background see my Ethics Daily article from Tuesday and an Ethics Daily video I shot with Jim Hill of Churchnet). Much of Smyrna remains lost under the modern city but there are some efforts being made to excavate and preserve some ruins. The ruins, known as the Agora, are of structures that likely date to just after a devastating earthquake in 178 AD. Although not a massive area of ruins, it was nice to take a stroll back into history. And I enjoyed the short walk there along Turkish shops and street vendors. Hopefully the excavations in Smyrna can help shed light on society in the time of the early church and help highlight Turkey's biblical heritage.

Smyrna Agora
(photo credit: Brian Kaylor
Paul likely preached in Smyrna during his long stay in nearby Ephesus, and may have even started the church here. John writes of the resurrected Jesus saying to the church in Smyrna:
"To the angel of the church in Smyrna write: 'These are the words of him who is the First and the Last, who died and came to life again. I know your afflictions and your poverty—yet you are rich! I know about the slander of those who say they are Jews and are not, but are a synagogue of Satan. Do not be afraid of what you are about to suffer. I tell you, the devil will put some of you in prison to test you, and you will suffer persecution for ten days. Be faithful, even to the point of death, and I will give you life as your victor’s crown. Whoever has ears, let them hear what the Spirit says to the churches. The one who is victorious will not be hurt at all by the second death.'"
You can view more photos of the Agora here.

Smyrna Agora
(photo credit: Brian Kaylor

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