April 11, 2017

St. Antipas - Living Near Satan's Throne, Yet Holding Fast to the Name of Jesus

St. Antipas
A Mosaic From Hosios Loukas - A Walled Monastery in Boeotia, Greece
© Photo: Wikipedia / Shakko
St. John's Note to the City of Pergamum within the Book of Revelation:
“To the angel of the church in Pergamum, write this:
“‘The one with the sharp two-edged sword says this:
“I know that you live where Satan’s throne is, and yet you hold fast to my name and have not denied your faith in me, not even in the days of Antipas, my faithful witness, who was martyred among you, where Satan lives.

According to The New Jerome Biblical Commentary (1990) ... 

The metaphor of "the one with the two-edged sword" connects to a later verse:  Therefore, repent.  Otherwise, I will come to you quickly and wage war against them with the sword of my mouth.  ~Revelation 2:16 

Indeed, the word of God is living and effective, sharper than any two-edged sword, penetrating even between soul and spirit, joints and marrow, and able to discern reflections and thoughts of the heart. ~Hebrews 4:12

Satan's Throne could refer to an altar in Pergamum dedicated to Zeus, a shrine to Asclepius, a temple dedicated to Roma and Augustus, and/or the seat of the Roman governor. 

The word "witness" suggests that Antipas was detained and questioned by Roman authorities.

It's intriguing to consider the details of how St. John the Evangelist (the purported author of the Book of Revelation) and St. Antipas met.  Pergamum (now ruins near the modern Turkish city of Bergama) was about 80 miles from Ephesus - where St. John is believed to have taken care of Mary after the death of Jesus.  Pergamum is about 150 miles from the island of Patmos - where St. John was exiled when he wrote the Book of Revelation. Whatever the circumstances, it's nice that St. John included St. Antipas's name in the Book of Revelation so that we can know the name of one more saint in heaven. 



Ruins of Pergamum - the City of St. Antipas
Photo Credit: Haluk Comertel


Traditions assert that Antipas was martyred by having been placed in a brazen ox that was set to burn.

It is also claimed that oils from St. Antipas's relics secret a healing oil.

St. Antipas somehow became the patron of tooth ailments, and he shares a feast day with St. Stanislaus of Kracow - April 11.

St. Antipas Church - Russia

St. Antipas Charm/Pendant

A "Brazen" Longhorn :)

Complete With the Ability to Roast or Grill ... But Not Holy People 0:)

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