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     A big part of the city, that is in the borders of Alaşehir district of Manisa Province, has remained under modern residence today. Philadelphia, which has been founded by Attalos Philadelphos the 2nd, who is a Pergamon king, has been called as "Small Athena" due to the excess number of its temples and the festivals held in the city in Roman Period. The city, which kept its importance in Byzantine Period, has been surrounded with a strong wall in that period. In the excavations performed in Philadelphia, a theater and a temple dated to the Roman Period have been found. During the excavation works performed in the theater, a big part of the scene (stage building) and a small part of the cavea (sitting part) has been brought into daylight. From the temple, which is thought to be constructed in the 2nd century, only base and some marble architrave blocks have reached today. One of the most magnificent monuments of the city is St. Jean church, only three pillars of which could be protected. The basilica constructed in the 6th century has been subject to repairs in the later periods. Another building found during the excavations is an entrance door called as "Eastern Door" belonging to the Byzantine city walls. The door protected with two towers, one of which has a semi - circular and the other has a rectangular plan, has been closed during the Turkish attacks and has not been used since that date.

Anabatours - There Are Too Many Place To See

     The region still grows some of the best grapes in Turkey and Philadelphia was famous for its wine. The god of wine was worshipped here under both his Greek and Latin names, Dionysus and Bacchus. The city must have been very prosperous during the Roman period because it was referred to as Little Athens'. In 1 7 it suffered a disastrous earthquake and was rebuilt by Tiberius who renamed it Neo-Caesarea.

To the church in Philadelphia

To the angel of the church in Philadelphia, write this: The holy one, the true,who holds the key of David, who opens and no one shall close, who closes and no one shall open, says this:"I know your works (behold, I have left an open door before you, which no one can close). You have limited strength, and yet you have kept my word and have not denied my name. Behold, I will make those of the assembly of Satan who claim to be Jews and are not, but are lying, behold I will make them come and fall prostrate at your feet, and they will realize that I love you. Because you have kept my message of endurance, I will keep you safe in the time of trial that is going to come to the whole world to test the inhabitants of the earth. I am coming quickly. Hold fast to what you have, so that no one may take your crown. The victor I will make into a pillar in the temple of my God, and he will never leave it again. On him I will inscribe 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, as welt as my new name.Whoever has ears ought to hear what the Spirit says to the churches. (Rv 3:7-13) Excepting Smyrna, Philadelphia is the only church among the seven about which nothing bad is said by St John.

    The pillar bore three names: God, Jerusalem, and Christ. This is the final eschatoiogical vision of St John in the book of Revelation and it describes the ultimate hope of the faithful which is a heavenly city. It will descend from heaven as the bride of the exalted Christ. Those who are marked as conquerors will be its citizens. At the beginning of his letter to the members of the church in Philadelphia St John refers to Christ as the truth itself, and as the holder of the key of David. This is the key to open the holy city Jerusalem. These keys are referred to by God in Isaiah 22:22:

Anabatours - There Are Too Many Place To See
Byzantine relief decoration with cross. Provenance unknown. Manisa Archaeological Museum.

    Lacking natural defences the cily was surrounded by a wall to protect it from Turkish raids. A section of this wall has survived on the north side. In 1391 it was captured by the Turks.
    The church which has been named after St John was a rectangular building of six pillars of reused stone material and upper structure in brick. Three of its pillars have survived, with the fourth half buried in soil. The westernmost pillars are under modern buildings. On the pillars some eleventh-century paintings can barely be distinguished.  I will place the key of the House of David on his shoulder; when he opens, no one shall shut, when he shuts, no one shalt open. These are the keys of Death and Hades mentioned in the book of Revelation (Rv 1:1 8). They are access to the eschotological kingdom of God. The door's shutting means the irrevocable loss of the opportunity. The open door he has set before them is himself through whom they could enter the kingdom of heaven.

Although they have little power the Christians of Philadelphia have kept Christ's word and if they keep to their faith they will be rewarded after the impending Second Coming. At the hour of trial Christ will stand by them. Among the promised rewards is that he who conquers will become a pillar in the temple of God and he shall never go out. The Greek word stylos means pillar' or support'. In both the Old and New Testaments it is often used both literally and metaphorically. The metaphor may refer to the two pillars which adorned Solomon's temple. In 1 Kings 7:21 and 2 Chronicles 3:17 Solomon sets up a pillar to the left of the entrance of his temple which he coils Boaz, and another one to the right named Yachin.' ( The names are thought to mean (God) established (the House) with might'. )

Anabatours - There Are Too Many Place To See
Saint John Church Ruins

    St John's words give the impression that the Christians in the church of Philadelphia are either small in numberor poor or both; but they have not denied Christ. The Jews of Philadelphia are accused in the same way as the Jews of Smyrna, of being the assembly' of Satan: not true Jews but pretenders. These false Jews will come to the Christian Church and recognize that the Risen One loved the true believers, because the church of Philadelphia has followed the example of Christ's patient endurance.Philadelphia (Alaşehir) was founded by Attalos II Philadelphos (In Greek loving one's brother or sister'; an epithet that he won because of the ioyalty he had shown to his elder brother Eumenes II. The port he had established on the Pamphylian coast was also named Attalia (Antalya) after himself.) of Pergamum (1 59-138 BCE). The spot chosen for the new city was on the banks of the river Cogamus (Alaşehir cay) on the lower slopes of Mt TmoI us, controlling the routes converging in the area. In 481 BCE the Persian ruler Xerxes I had travelled by this route towards Sardis on his way to Greece. The objective of Attalos II in founding a city here was probably to establish a gateway to Phrygia and Hellenize its inhabitants who spoke their own GaIIic tongue. When his nephew Aftalos Ill, a weak and eccentric person, left the kingdom of Pergamum to Rome in 133 BCE, Philadelphia became Roman territory and was eventually part of the Byzantine Empire.

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