““And to the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write, ‘These things says the Amen, the Faithful and True Witness, the Beginning of the creation of God: “I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot. I could wish you were cold or hot. So then, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will vomit you out of My mouth. Because you say, ‘I am rich, have become wealthy, and have need of nothing’—and do not know that you are wretched, miserable, poor, blind, and naked— I counsel you to buy from Me gold refined in the fire, that you may be rich; and white garments, that you may be clothed, that the shame of your nakedness may not be revealed; and anoint your eyes with eye salve, that you may see. As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten. Therefore be zealous and repent. Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me. To him who overcomes I will grant to sit with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne. “He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.” ’ ””
Revelation 3:14-22 NKJV
Going out and sharing the Gospel is an adventure! When one goes out and shares the Good news of Jesus Christ coming to the world, living a sinless life, dying for the sins of humanity, being buried and being raised again, the reception can range from joy to profound disgust. In sharing that message, I prefer to have one or the other.
Periodically, I encounter people who couldn’t care less, one way or the other. These are people who are the most in danger, having become numb in this sin drenched world. They no longer have a conviction, or even a sense of what is right or wrong. They smile and listen, but their hearts are not moved.
Sadder still, I encounter people in the church, who have lost that sense of the glory of God. Often they are people who have been saved a long tie, or they are the children, of the children, of Christians, and life in church as become just their way of life. They have become lukewarm. If they were cold, they would have left long ago, having decided that it was not even worth the effort to attend church.
In my early days in the faith, I was one who was, and is excited at what Jesus has done in my life. While there have been seasons of dryness, I have maintained a high spiritual temperature, as I came into the faith quite broken, and a hot mess. I was overly enthusiastic, drawing smirks from those more seasoned, for whom the first blooms of new faith had long ago begun to fade.
Jesus addresses the failings of the church at Laodicia, for they had lost that heat. They had become wealthy and self sufficient, feeling as if they no longer needed God. For many the absence of trouble is a cause to push the pause button, to cease doing the things that have created that peace.
Peace and comfort can give one pause to become complacent. This is a dangerous place, because one become unaware at sin that may have crept in, eroding the foundation from under the church. For the individual Christian, one can have the sense that they no longer need God.
“Remove falsehood and lies far from me; Give me neither poverty nor riches— Feed me with the food allotted to me; Lest I be full and deny You, And say, “Who is the Lord?” Or lest I be poor and steal, And profane the name of my God.”
Proverbs 30:8-9 NKJV
The Lord has provided what I have needed, and sustained me, yet He has introduced enough pain and struggle to maintain my dependence on Him.
Being hot is the ideal, as one has the passion to be constant in sharing the word of God, and is eager to follow the teachings tot hen letter. There is an eagerness to go and tell.
Being cold is far better than being Luke warm, sin that there is a sense of the need. I would much rather preach the word ion opposition than to those who are not being impacted by it. When the Lord was reaching my heart, I had a great deal of hostility to those who sought to share the Gospel with me. I am so thankful that they were patient with me, and did not stop. Their persistence paid off.
Brothers and sisters, you may be one who has cooled to the point that you are Luke warm. You come to church, but you do not serve, but sit in the pew, thinking more of what you will do after church, than what the Lord has for you in the sermon. Perhaps you are one who is n o longer impacted by the preaching and teaching of God’s word. There is little real conviction any more.
You have become and lukewarm…and numb.
Jesus is standing at the door and knocking. Often we look upon this statement as one for those who are yet to believe, but the Laodiceans are established believers. He is knocking at the door of your heart.
Satan has sown so much distraction into the lives of Christians s we have been drawn away into “holy” pursuits of liberal and conservative politics and social justice. We have begun to doubt the power of God to transform the human heart.
Let us be zealous and repent, asking the Lord to create in us a raw heart, sensitive to the Holy Spirit. We are entering a season when one will need to be hot to endure, as the pressure of the world will bearing down on the church of Jesus Christ like never before.
One of the great things about persecution, is that is a clarifier, as it burns out the dross and purifies the soul.
“In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ, whom having not seen you love. Though now you do not see Him, yet believing, you rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory, receiving the end of your faith—the salvation of your souls.”
I Peter 1:6-9 NKJV
May the pressure of the coming times heat us up, that we be a hot, savory drink, warming the heart of God.
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