Laodicea has a romantic name to it, named after King Antiochus II’s wife Laodike. While the early days of the city indicate that it was of little importance in the region, however, it eventually fell under Roman rule. While under this rule the populace suffered during wars, they recovered quickly thanks to their resilience which was born from having built on an earthquake-prone location. Sadly, during the reign of Nero, the city was destroyed by a great quake.
After the rebuild, the population took on Greek building style and invested in medical school and advancements such as science. The city was eventually given the title of ‘free city’ which led to the influx of Jewish peoples.
As the Laodicea was a large Jewish community, it became a major seat in the growth and flourishing of Christianity. The city and church we the focus of both Paul and John in the bible. Paul was either the recipient or sender of a letter to the church. The wording of the passage has led to many being puzzled by who the recipient was. In Book of Revelation John mentions the city as one that needs to repent to Christ and God due to their middle ground stance of not being either for or against his teachings. Many have speculated that this is because the teachers of the time put much emphasis on spiritual wealth, whereas the city was considered rich and bountiful at the time.