The Hidden Manna and White Stone

Wim Malgo (1922-1992)

An interpretation of the last book of the Bible. Part 25. Revelation 2:14-17.

The Nicolaitans and the followers of Balaam, referred to in Revelation 2:14-15, were not two different groups. Rather, the Nicolaitans advocated Balaam’s teaching. They emulated him and won other members of the church at Pergamos over to their apostate position. It’s evident from these verses that the Nicolaitans and Balaamites are the same; the Lord’s accusation is summarized in that statement, where it says, “But I have a few things against thee, because thou hast there them that hold the doctrine of Balaam, who taught Balac to cast a stumblingblock before the children of Israel, to eat things sacrificed unto idols, and to commit fornication. So hast thou also them that hold the doctrine of the Nicolaitanes, which thing I hate.”

Isn’t that the grave situation facing the Church of Jesus today? Uncompromising on the outside, but inwardly lazy and rotten? Biblically-oriented on the outside, but inwardly corrupt throughout? This is why the exalted Lord—who judges the enemies of the church with His sharp, two-edged sword—directs that same sword with relentless severity against the individual child of God, in order to separate him.

If Satan cannot bring down a child of God outwardly, he will do everything in his power to bring him down inwardly. The Lord Jesus presents the alternative to the church in Pergamos (and, by extension, us): “Repent; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will fight against them with the sword of my mouth.”

The war, the divorce court, has already taken place in many hearts. If this passage applies to your life, your exile can be lifted by the judgment that took place on Calvary, through your repentance. Because if we judge ourselves, we will not be judged.

To those who repent, the promise for overcomers in verse 17 applies: “To him that overcometh will I [firstly] give to eat of the hidden manna”; that is, the bread of life that is the Lord Himself. Here the Lord is evoking Israel, to whom He gave manna from heaven every day in the desert for forty years. The Lord Jesus says: “I am the living bread which came down from heaven: if any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world” (John 6:51).

Secondly, “…and will give him a white stone” (Rev 2:17). What is this white stone? It is Jesus, the stone “cut out without hands” (Dan 2:34); the precious cornerstone (1 Pet 2:6); the foundation stone: “For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ” (1 Cor 3:11). Here in Revelation, He is called the “white stone,” a depiction of the glorified Christ.

Thirdly, “…and in the stone a new name written, which no man knoweth saving he that receiveth it.” “In the stone” means carved into the stone. Isn’t that what the Lord promised Isaiah? “Behold, I have graven thee upon the palms of my hands” (Is 49:16a).

The stone also evokes the high priest Aaron, who wore precious stones on his chest before the Lord. The Lord had commanded: “And thou shalt make the breastplate of judgment with cunning work; after the work of the ephod thou shalt make it; of gold, of blue, and of purple, and of scarlet, and of fine twined linen, shalt thou make it. Foursquare it shall be being doubled; a span shall be the length thereof, and a span shall be the breadth thereof. And thou shalt set in it settings of stones, even four rows of stones: the first row shall be a sardius, a topaz, and a carbuncle: this shall be the first row. And the second row shall be an emerald, a sapphire, and a diamond. And the third row a ligure, an agate, and an amethyst. And the fourth row a beryl, and an onyx, and a jasper: they shall be set in gold in their inclosings. And the stones shall be with the names of the children of Israel, twelve, according to their names, like the engravings of a signet; every one with his name shall they be according to the twelve tribes […] And Aaron shall bear the names of the children of Israel in the breastplate of judgment upon his heart, when he goeth in unto the holy place, for a memorial before the LORD continually” (Ex 28:15-21, 29).

Now we understand the promise to overcomers in Revelation 2:17 much better: “To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the hidden manna, and will give him a white stone, and in the stone a new name written, which no man knoweth saving he that receiveth it.”

This promise to overcomers includes the most intimate fellowship with God through our high priest Jesus Christ, who bears our new name before the Father. He sits at the right hand of majesty on high and prays for us. And the overcomer, who has become one with Him in this way, experiences being drawn to God through the high priest Jesus Christ. As Paul says in Colossians 3:3: “For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God.”

Are you established on the foundation and carved into the precious white stone, or do you need to be judged by His sword?

Midnight Call - 11/2021

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