Biblical Turkey Guide
The city of Pergamon, which was the capital city of famous Pergamon Kingdom and home of famous Pergamon Library, is now one of the spectacular archeological sights of Turkey. Galen, one of the greatest physicians of antiquity was from Pergamon and worked at the healing center there.
During the time of John's letters, the city of Pergamon was one of the most important cities of the first century with its Zeus, Dionysus, Athena and Imperial Cult temples. Especially the cult of the Emperor Augustus and Goddess Roma was very strong, and the city was full of statues of the emperor and Roman divinities. So the fight between the Imperials cult and young Christian church was inevitable.
According to ancient sources, Gaius was the first bishop of Pergamon. He was followed by dentist Antipas. The letter, written to the church in Pergamon, is full of praising and accusations. People of Pergamon are accused to eat the food offered to pagan gods and practice the immortality.
The seat of Satan, mentioned in the letter of the John, is accepted as the Zeus Altar by many bible scholars. Also some other scholars claim that the Seat of Satan was either the healing center of Asclepios or temples of the Imperial Cult.
Although we don't know the location of the Synagogues, there is mention of Hellenistic Jews in Pergamon.
Christians in Pergamon suffered from the persecutions during the time of Decius. In the 4th century, the bishops from Pergamon took part in the religious meeting in Sofia and Constantinople. Having a revolutionary character, the people of Pergamon were always after anti Roman and anti Byzantine policies.
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