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Home ▸ Catalog ▸ Judean & Biblical Coins ▸ Biblical Coins ▸ Churches of RevelationView Options:  |  |  | 

Churches of Revelation

The Book of Revelation discusses the churches of seven cities. This page lists some of our coins from those cities.

- Ephesus, Ionia (Revelation 2:1-7) - the church that had forsaken its first love (2:4).
- Smyrna, Ionia (Revelation 2:8-11) - the church that would suffer persecution (2:10).
- Pergamon, Mysia (Revelation 2:12-17) - the church that needed to repent (2:16).
- Thyatira, Lydia (Revelation 2:18-29) - the church that had a false prophetess (2:20).
- Sardis, Lydia (Revelation 3:1-6) - the church that had fallen asleep (3:2).
- Philadelphia, Lydia (Revelation 3:7-13) - the church that had endured patiently (3:10).
- Laodicea, Phrygia (Revelation 3:14-22) - the church with the lukewarm faith (3:16).

Ephesos, Ionia, c. 166 - 50 B.C.

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Ephesos, on the west coast of Anatolia, was one of the twelve cities of the Ionian League. It was famous for its Temple of Artemis, completed around 550 B.C., one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. The cult image of the Ephesian goddess has a mummy-like body with the feet placed close together, is many-breasted, and from each of her hands hangs a long fillet with tassels at the ends. At her side stands a stag raising its head to the image of the goddess. The usual symbols of this nature-goddess are the torch, stag, and the bee. Coins of Ephesos most frequently depict a bee on the obverse. The high-priest of the temple of Artemis was called the King Bee, while the virgin priestesses were called honey-bees (Melissae). Ephesus was one of the seven churches of Asia cited in the Book of Revelation and the Gospel of John may have been written there.
GB72555. Bronze AE 17, SNG MŁnchen 80; SNG Cop 301; BMC Ionia p. 62, 137; SNGvA 1842 var. (magistrate); SNG TŁbingen 2795 ff. var. (same) SNG Keckman 221 ff. (same), VF, nice patina, weight 2.155 g, maximum diameter 16.9 mm, die axis 0o, Ephesos mint, Roman rule, c. 166 - 50 B.C.; obverse E−Φ, bee within wreath; reverse stag standing right, date palm tree in background center, ∆ left, ΩΠA monogram right, magistrate's name ∆HMHTPI/OC in exergue; ex Forum (2008); $120.00 SALE PRICE $108.00

Thyateira, Lydia, Early 3rd Century A.D., Pseudo-Autonomous Coinage

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Thyateira (also Thyatira) is the ancient name of the modern Turkish city of Akhisar ("white castle"). In Revelation, Thyatira is the church that had a false prophetess (Revelation 2:20).
RP68779. Bronze AE 17, BMC Lydia p. 299, 46; Mionnet IV 858; SNG BnF 1398; SNG Leypold I 1261; SNG Cop -; SNGvA -; SNG Keckman -; Weber -; Lindgren -; SGICV -, aVF, weight 2.819 g, maximum diameter 16.5 mm, die axis 180o, Thyatira mint, early 3rd century A.D.; obverse head of Dionysos right; reverse ΘYATEIPHNΩN, Nike advancing left, raising wreath in right, palm frond over shoulder in left; extremely rare; SOLD

Smyrna, Ionia, Time of Mithridates VI, c. 88 - 85 B.C.

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GB81290. Bronze AE 25, SNG Cop 1206, BMC Ionia 118, VF, weight 12.917 g, maximum diameter 25.2 mm, die axis 0o, Smyrna mint, c. 88 - 85 B.C.; obverse Diademed head of Mithridates VI right; reverse EPMOΓENHΣ ΦPIΞOΣ ΣMYPNAIΩN, Nike advancing right, holding wreath and palm; rare; SOLD


Other coins that relate to the Book of Revelation include coins of Nero and coins of the Parthian kings with an archer reverse. Verses 13 and following are a symbolic reference to Parthians attacking Rome for its vile behavior in persecuting Christ's church. Parthians themselves aren't envisioned as doing the attacking, but the serve as a great image for the diabolical forces Revelation's author had in mind. Suetonius, in The Twelve Caesars, writes of a belief among the Romans after Nero's death that he hadn't really died but would be returning with the Parthians. Nero has been identified as the 666 of Revelation (his name in gematria equals 666). Verse 8 refers to the Parthians long hair, "They had hair like woman's hair." Verse 10 includes a subtle reference to Parthian archer-horseman and their perfected technique of the parting shots, shooting over the rear of their animal while feigning retreat, "They had tails like scorpions, with stingers." Verse 14 refers to the Parthian heartland across the Euphrates.

Catalog current as of Friday, November 27, 2015.
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Churches of Revelation