“But you have this, that you hate the work of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate.” Revelation 2:6
Nicolaitans – There aren’t many expression where the Alpha and Omega, the Lamb of God, says that He hates certain people, so when we read these words, we better pay attention. Most of us will see nothing more here than an obscure reference to some first century sect. We’ll dismiss the bold remark as a lost bit of apocalyptic literature. We need to be much more careful.
The Greek word nikolaiton comes from two other words, nike and laos. Literally, it means those who have victory over the people. Now the words start to become ominous. Which category of human beings has victory over the people? We usually call them “leaders.” Suddenly this verse carries a very contemporary judgment. Is Yeshua saying that He hates leaders? Hardly! But there is a kind of leadership that ranks high on the list of detestable things. It is the leadership that inserts human authority between the believer and God. In other words, Yeshua is saying that wherever we find human beings asserting that their authority stands between God and His children, we are looking at the Satanic order.
It’s possible that we just might find Nicolaitans in the middle of the church, or even in our homes. How can we say this? Because the priesthood of all believers, asserted by God Himself in the designation of Israel, boldly proclaims that you and I have direct access to God. We are not required to go through the elders, the deacons, the pastor, the bishop or any other figure in the religious hierarchy. In fact, although God loves order and certain functions within the Body are performed at His calling and direction, no human being has authority to act as your mediator before God. Yeshua, the Messiah, fills that role – and only He can do it. Other members of the Body may be able to offer you advice and counsel, but God expects you to come to Him for life instruction. That’s why He was so careful (and gracious) to tell us how to live.
This applies to the home as well. Everyone in the household has direct access to God. There is no hierarchy that requires a wife to access God through her husband. Order is not the same as intimacy. There is one head of the church, and since the church is the assembly of all believers, there is only one head for each believer in that community – and it isn’t the man of the house. Whenever husbands begin to act as though they are the spiritual access point for all in the family, they are walking the path of the Nicolaitans. Be very careful.
We might agree with all this theoretical discussion, but that is not the purpose of adopting a biblical worldview. The purpose is to change our behavior. It is to align ourselves with God and become transparent transporters of God’s design. So, it’s time to ask how you’re doing? Are you yielding to a Nicolaitan in disguise? Are you acting as though some human being has spiritual authority between you and God? Or perhaps you are tending to be a Nicolaitan. Perhaps you’ve asserted that you are the one the people need to consult before they can know the will of God. Satan loves to tweak the original design just enough to detour us. Don’t become part of his order or participate in any community that follows his influence. Jesus hates those who try to replace Him.
Topical Index: Authority