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The Word Of My Perseverance

Related Bible studies:

  • Holding Fast To The Lord

  • The Test

  • Reprobate

  • Binding And Loosing

  • Perpetual Priesthood

  • Many Are Called But Few Are Chosen (book)

Revelation 3:10-13See the note below, and the Bible studies Holding Fast To The Lord and The Test.

10 'Because you have kept [5083] the word of My perseverance [5281], I also will keep [5083] you from the hour of testing [3986], that hour which is about to come upon the whole world, to test those who dwell on the earth.

11 'I am coming quickly; hold fast [2902] what you have [2192], so that no one will take your crown [4735].

12 'He who overcomes, I will make him a pillar in the temple of My God, and he will not go out from it anymore; and I will write on him the name of My God, and the name of the city of My God, the new Jerusalem, which comes down out of heaven from My God, and My new name.

13 'He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.'


NT:5083 tereo (tay-reh'-o)

(Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance)

from teros (a watch; perhaps akin to NT:2334); to guard (from loss or injury, properly, by keeping the eye upon; and thus differing from NT:5442, which is properly to prevent escaping; and from NT:2892, which implies a fortress or full military lines of apparatus), i.e. to note (a prophecy; figuratively, to fulfil a command); by implication, to detain (in custody; figuratively, to maintain); by extension, to withhold (for personal ends; figuratively, to keep unmarried); by extension, to withhold (for personal ends; figuratively, to keep unmarried):

KJV - hold fast, keep (-er), (pre-, re-) serve, watch.

(Thayer’s Greek Lexicon)

to attend to carefully, take care of

a. properly, to guard: tina, a prisoner (Matthew 27:36,54)

b. metaphorically, to keep: tina, one in that state in which he is (1 Corinthians 7:37)

c. to observe: namely, poos k.t.l., (Revelation 3:3)

d. to reserve: to undergo something (2 Peter 2:4)

NT:3986 peirasmos (pi-ras-mos')

(Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance)

from NT:3985; a putting to proof (by experiment [of good], experience [of evil], solicitation, discipline or provocation); by implication, adversity:

KJV - temptation, try.

(Thayer’s Greek Lexicon)

an experiment, attempt, trial, proving

a. universally, trial, proving (Galatians 4:14)

b. specifically, the trial of man's fidelity, integrity, virtue, constancy, etc. (1 Peter 4:12)

c. "temptation" (i. e., trial) of God by men, i. e. rebellion against God, by which his power and justice are, as it were, put to the proof and challenged to show themselves (Hebrews 3:8)

NT:2902 krateo (krat-eh'-o)

(Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance)

from NT:2904; to use strength, i.e. seize or retain (literally or figuratively):

KJV - hold (by, fast), keep, lay hand (hold) on, obtain, retain, take (by).

(Thayer’s Greek Lexicon)

1. to have power, be powerful; to be chief, be master of, to rule:

2. to get possession of

a. to become master of, to obtain:

b. to take hold of (Matthew 9:25)

c. to lay hold of, take, seize: tina, to lay hands on one in order to get him into one's power

(Matthew 14:3)

3. to hold

a. to hold in the hand:

b. to hold fast (Revelation 2:25)

c. to continue to hold, to retain:

NT:2192 echo (ekh'-o)

(Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance)

including an alternate form scheo (skheh'-o); used in certain tenses only); a primary verb; to hold (used in very various applications, literally or figuratively, direct or remote; such as possessions; ability, continuity, relation, or condition):

KJV - be (able, hold, possessed with), accompany, begin to amend, can (+-not), conceive, count, diseased, do eat, enjoy, fear, following, have, hold, keep, lack, go to law, lie, must needs, of necessity, need, next, recover, reign, rest, return, sick, take for, tremble, uncircumcised, use.

(Thayer’s Greek Lexicon)

to have

I. Transitively

1. to have equivalent to hold

a. to have (hold) in the hand (Revelation 1:16)

b. in the sense of wearing of garments, arms and the like (Matthew 3:4; 22:12)

c. tropically, to have (hold) possession of the mind

d. to hold fast, keep (Luke 19:20)

e. to have (in itself or as a consequence), comprise, involve (James 1:4; 2:17)

f. to regard, consider, hold as

2. to have equivalent to own, possess

a. external things such as pertain to property, riches, furniture, utensils, goods, food, etc. (Luke 21:4)

b. Under the heading of possession belongs the phrase echein tina as commonly used of those joined to anyone by the bonds of nature, blood, marriage, friendship, duty, law, compact, and the like:

c. of attendance or companionship (Matthew 15:30)

d. to have a thing in readiness, have at hand, have in store (Matthew 14:17)

e. a person or thing is said echein those things which are its parts or are members of his body:

f. one is said to have the diseases or other ills with which he is affected or afflicted:

g. one is said to have intellectual or spiritual faculties, endowments, virtues, sensations, desires, emotions, affections, faults, defects, etc. (Revelation 17:9)

h. of age and time:

i. echein ti is said of opportunities, benefits, advantages, conveniences, which one enjoys or can make use of:

j. echein ti is used of one on whom something has been laid, on whom it is incumbent as something to be borne, observed, performed, discharged:

k. echein ti is used of one to whom something has been entrusted:

l. in reference to complaints and disputes the following phrases are used:

m. phrases of various kinds:

n. echoo, with an infinitive

1. with the subjunctive, equivalent to be able (Matthew 18:25)

2. is used of what there is a certain necessity for doing:

II. Intransitively

a. to hold oneself or find oneself so and so, to be in such or such a condition:

b. impersonally (1 Timothy 5:25)

III. the middle voice to hold oneself to a thing, to lay hold of a thing, to adhere or cling to; to be closely joined to a person or thing

NT:5281 hupomone (hoop-om-on-ay')

(Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance)

from NT:5278 (“to stay under, remain, persevere”); cheerful (or hopeful) endurance, constancy:

KJV - enduring, patience, patient continuance (waiting).

(Thayer’s Greek Lexicon)

1. steadfastness, constancy, endurance (James 5:11)

2. a patient, steadfast waiting for;

3. a patient enduring, sustaining (2 Cor. 1:6)

NT:4735 stephanos (stef'-an-os)

(Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance)

from an apparently primary stepho (to twine or wreathe); a chaplet (as a badge of royalty, a prize in the public games or a symbol of honor generally; but more conspicuous and elaborate than the simple fillet, NT:1238), literally or figuratively:

KJV - crown.

(Thayer’s Greek Lexicon)

a crown (with which the head is encircled)

a. properly, as a mark of royal or (in general) exalted rank

b. metaphorically,

1. the eternal blessedness which will be given as a prize to the genuine servants of God and Christ (2 Timothy 4:8)

2. that which is an ornament and honor to one: so of persons (Philippians 4:1)

The “word of My perseverance” is the word of the Lord to “hold fast what you have”, to keep standing firm in Him to the end. It’s to remain abiding in Him by not moving away from Him in apathy with an apostate heart. As we’ll see, the Bible has much to say about this. By definition of the Greek, it’s to remain steadfastly waiting for Christ, to cheerfully and hopefully endure, to patiently endure, to remain faithfully under His lordship, not drifting away in unbelief, but to do His will thereby proving the genuineness of our faith.

The promise from the Lord is that IF we will keep persevering in obedience to Him, attending carefully to our hearts in regard to what He has said to do, thereby remaining near Him, that He will keep us (guard and protect us) during the extreme time of testing (“a trial, time of proving”) that is coming upon the entire earth.

Jesus clearly says that by holding fast to what we have, no one will take our crown (see the Bible study Receiving The Crown). “What we have” refers to what we have received in Christ. The question you may now have is, “Does this have anything to do with our salvation, or just our rewards?” We need to look at the verses that use the same Greek word that we interpret in English as “crown” to get a clearer understanding (for this see the Bible study Holding Fast To The Lord). As Paul stated, “Consider what I say, for the Lord will give you understanding in everything.” (2 Timothy 2:7/NAS)

Revelation 1:9John refers not only to the perseverance that are in Jesus but also to the tribulation.

9 I, John, your brother and fellow partaker in the tribulation and kingdom and perseverance [5281] which are in Jesus, was on the island called Patmos because of the word of God and the testimony of Jesus.


Revelation 2:1-5 - The Lord’s word to the church in Ephesus began with Him letting them know of the good things that they were doing, including their perseverance.

1 "To the angel of the church in Ephesus write: The One who holds the seven stars in His right hand, the One who walks among the seven golden lampstands, says this:

2 'I know your deeds and your toil and perseverance [5281], and that you cannot tolerate evil men, and you put to the test those who call themselves apostles, and they are not, and you found them to be false;

3 and you have perseverance [5281] and have endured [941] for My name's sake, and have not grown weary. [see Galatians 6:9, Hebrews 12:3]

4 'But I have this against you, that you have left your first [4413- “foremost (in time, place, order or importance)”] love.

5 'Therefore remember from where you have fallen, and repent and do the deeds you did at first; or else I am coming to you and will remove your lampstand out of its place — unless you repent.


NT:941 bastazo (bas-tad'-zo)

(Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance)

perhaps remotely derived from the base of NT:939 (through the idea of removal); to lift, literally or figuratively (endure, declare, sustain, receive, etc.):

KJV - bear, carry, take up.

(Thayer’s Greek Lexicon)

1. to take up with the hands (John 10:31)

2. to take up in order to carry or bear; to put upon oneself (something) to be carried; to bear (John 19:17)

3. simply to bear, carry (Matthew 3:11)

to carry on one's person (Luke 10:4)

4. to bear away, carry off nosous, to take away or remove by curing them (Matthew 8:17)

Revelation 2:18-19As with the church in Ephesus, the Lord’s word to the church in Thyatira began with Him letting them know of the good things that they are doing, including their perseverance.

18 "And to the angel of the church in Thyatira write: The Son of God, who has eyes like a flame of fire, and His feet are like burnished bronze, says this:

19 'I know your deeds, and your love and faith and service and perseverance [5281], and that your deeds of late are greater than at first.


Revelation 13:8-10In this chapter, John describes the beast he saw coming out of the sea that all whose names are not written in the book of life will worship. The perseverance and faith of the saints will be necessary during this extremely challenging time period.

8 All who dwell on the earth will worship him, everyone whose name has not been written from the foundation of the world in the book of life of the Lamb who has been slain.

9 If anyone has an ear, let him hear.

10 If anyone is destined for captivity, to captivity he goes; if anyone kills with the sword, with the sword he must be killed. Here is the perseverance [5281] and the faith of the saints.


Revelation 14:9-13The temptation to give into the beast and compromise our faith because of fear will test every heart that follows Christ. I believe it will either make us stronger or weaker, that there will be no in-between. As many fellow believers throughout the world have already experienced, the true state of our commitment to Christ will be revealed when facing the possibility of death.

9 Then another angel, a third one, followed them, saying with a loud voice, "If anyone worships the beast and his image, and receives a mark on his forehead or on his hand,

10 he also will drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is mixed in full strength in the cup of His anger; and he will be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels and in the presence of the Lamb.

11 "And the smoke of their torment goes up forever and ever; they have no rest day and night, those who worship the beast and his image, and whoever receives the mark of his name."

12 Here is the perseverance [5281] of the saints who keep the commandments of God and their faith in Jesus.

13 And I heard a voice from heaven, saying, "Write, 'Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord from now on!'" "Yes," says the Spirit, "so that they may rest from their labors, for their deeds follow with them."


1 Corinthians 9:24-27See the note below. (This passage is also in the Bible study Holding Fast To The Lord.)

24 Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but only one receives the prize [see Philippians 3:12-14]? Run in such a way that you may win.

25 Everyone who competes in the games exercises self-control in all things. They then do it to receive a perishable wreath [4735], but we an imperishable [“not liable to corruption or decay, immortal”].

26 Therefore I run in such a way, as not without aim; I box in such a way, as not beating the air;

27 but I discipline my body and make it my slave, so that, after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified [96].[See the Bible study Reprobate.]


NT:96 adokimos (ad-ok'-ee-mos)

(Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance)

from NT:1 (as a negative particle) and NT:1384; unapproved, i.e. rejected; by implication, worthless (literally or morally):

KJV - castaway, rejected, reprobate.

(Thayer’s Greek Lexicon)

not standing the test, not approved [remember Revelation 3:10; “the hour of testing”]

In this passage Paul refers to the imperishable wreath, or crown that is bestowed upon all who finish the course (see 2 Timothy 4:7-8 below). As I have said through many of my writings, a good start does not guarantee a good finish. Any runner will tell you this. It is through endurance training that you are able to finish. The author of Hebrews said, “For you have need of endurance, so that when you have done the will of God, you may receive what was promised.” (Hebrews 10:36/NASU; also see Hebrews 12:1-3) Many preachers teach that as long as you have started the race of salvation you will automatically receive the crown of eternal salvation, that it doesn’t matter afterwards whether or not you do the will of God and finish according to God’s rules for running. If that’s the case then Paul wasted his breath in this writing, and a few others. He also said, “if anyone competes as an athlete, he does not win the prize [“an honorary wreath, to crown, to adorn”] unless he competes according to the rules.” (2 Timothy 2:5/NASU) The guidelines of God are revealed to us in the word by the Holy Spirit.

How is endurance developed in the Christian’s life? James tells us how; “Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” (James 1:2-4/NIV; see Chapter Four, Not Lacking Anything in my book Many Are Called, But Few Are Chosen) Perseverance (endurance) occurs through the many kinds of trials we will face in our life. Only through the testing of our faith and are learning to hold fast to Christ by the strength of the Holy Spirit will we be able to stand firm in the hour of testing that is coming upon the whole world. To fail the test now is to be rejected, or disqualified, later.

Self-control and discipline are key characteristics that must be developed through the training of the Holy Spirit in the lives of all followers of Christ. Paul is not making a cute statement to be funny, like many preachers today, but is clearly saying that preachers can be disqualified in this race of salvation. The Greek for “disqualified” is adokimos (ad-ok'-ee-mos). It's defined as “not approved, i.e. rejected; by implication, worthless (literally or morally), not standing the test.” As Jesus proclaimed, “By your endurance you will gain your lives.” (Luke 21:19/NASU; see the Bible study Worthless Men)

(For more on testing, see Psalm 105:16-20 in the Bible study Binding And Loosing. Also see Luke 13:10-17 which tells of the “bent double” woman being “released” on the Sabbath from Satan’s binding, allowing her to live an “upright” life, a life lived righteously.)

Luke 8:11-15In this parable of the sower and the seed, Jesus refers to the different heart conditions of those who hear His word. The ones referred to as soil like a rock are said to have received the word with joy, but they have no root, or no depth in Christ. They are shallow root Christians. Every new follower of Christ is like this, like a new plant, but they are not expected to remain in this condition. Like a plant they should be growing up in Christ, gaining a greater measure of depth in Him, or becoming more deeply rooted in Him by retaining (keeping) the word and by persevering (see the Bible study Holding Fast To The Lord.). These type of Christians are the ones Paul spoke of who will fall away with an apostate heart during the very difficult time right before Christ returns (2 Thessalonians 2:1-4). They are those who Jesus said do not remain in Him, the Vine, and have therefore dried up, resulting in their being cast into the fire (John 15:1-11). Their negligence in remaining near Christ will result in a lack of their coming to completion, or perfection in Christ.

11 "This is the meaning of the parable: The seed is the word of God.

12 Those along the path are the ones who hear, and then the devil comes and takes away the word from their hearts, so that they may not believe and be saved.

13 Those on the rock are the ones who receive [1209] the word with joy when they hear it, but they have no root. They believe [4100- “to have faith in, to entrust, to be persuaded of, place confidence in”] for a while [2540- “a measure of time”], but in the time of testing [3986] they fall away [868- “cause to withdraw, to revolt, to desert”].

14 The seed that fell among thorns stands for those who hear, but as they go on their way they are choked by life's worries, riches and pleasures, and they do not mature [5052- “to be a bearer to completion (maturity), i.e. to ripen fruit (figuratively), to bring to perfection”].

15 But the seed on good soil stands for those with a noble and good heart, who hear the word, retain [2722] it, and by persevering [5281] produce a crop.


NT:1209 dechomai (dekh'-om-ahee)

(Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance)

middle voice of a primary verb; to receive (in various applications, literally or figuratively):

KJV - accept, receive, take. Compare NT:2983.

(Thayer’s Greek Lexicon)

1. to take with the hand (Luke 16:6 f)

2. to take up, receive

a. used of a place receiving one (Acts 3:21)

b. with the accusative of person to receive, grant access to, a visitor; not to refuse contact or friendship (Luke 9:11)

c. with the accusative of the thing offered in speaking, teaching, instructing; to receive favorably, give ear to, embrace, make one's own, approve, not to reject (Luke 8:13)

d. to receive equivalent to take upon oneself, sustain, bear, endure (2 Cor. 11:16)

3. to receive, get (Acts 22:5)

NT:2722 katecho (kat-ekh'-o)

(Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance)

from NT:2596 and NT:2192; to hold down (fast), in various applications (literally or figuratively):

KJV - have, hold (fast), keep (in memory), let, make toward, possess, retain, seize on, stay, take, withhold.

(Thayer’s Greek Lexicon)

1. to hold back, detain, retain

a. tina, from going away, followed by tou mee with an infinitive (Luke 4:42)

b. to restrain, hinder (Romans 1:18)

c. to hold fast, keep secure, keep from possession of: with the accusative of the thing, ton logon (Luke 8:15)

2. equivalent to Latin obtinere

a. to get possession of, take (Matthew 21:38)

b. to possess (1 Corinthians 7:30)

Luke 21:17-19To persevere is to gain our lives.

17 and you will be hated by all because of My name.

18 "Yet not a hair of your head will perish.

19 "By your endurance [5281] you will gain your lives.


Luke 21:19

19 By standing firm [5281] you will gain life.


Matthew 10:22This verse alone confirms the necessity of developing perseverance in the Christian’s life. Without it we simply will not be saved (Matthew 24:13 and Mark 13:13 say the same thing). Jesus was letting His twelve disciples know what lie ahead for them. Theirs, and ours, is a difficult road if we choose to continue following Christ, especially in a world that is getting more and more hostile toward His followers. Jesus makes it clear that in order to receive Christ’s salvation we must endure to the end, no matter what the cost. The good news is that the Lord is there for us, if we look to Him.

Paul says in 2 Timothy 2:12, “if we endure [5278- see def. below], we will also reign with him. If we disown him, he will also disown us…” Without endurance in following Christ we cannot reign with Him.

22 "You will be hated by all because of My name, but it is the one who has endured [5278] to the end who will be saved.


NT:5278 hupomeno (hoop-om-en'-o)

(Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance)

from NT:5259 and NT:3306; to stay under (behind), i.e. remain; figuratively, to undergo, i.e. bear (trials), have fortitude, persevere:

KJV - abide, endure, (take) patient (-ly), suffer, tarry behind.

(Thayer’s Greek Lexicon)

1. to remain i. e. tarry behind (Acts 17:14)

2. to remain i. e. abide,

a. to persevere: absolutely and emphatically, under misfortunes and trials to hold fast to one's faith in Christ (Matthew 10:22)

b. to endure, bear bravely and calmly: absolutely, ill-treatment (1 Peter 2:20)

James 1:12James tells us that it is by persevering under trial that we are “approved” and will thereby receive the crown of life (see the section Crowns In The Bible in the Bible study Perpetual Priesthood).

12 Blessed is a man who perseveres [5278] under trial; for once he has been approved [“stood the test”], he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him.


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