How different the messaging of the risen Christ to the churches at the end of the first century and now, nearly twenty centuries later. Seven messages to seven churches of Asia and only two were fully commended back then. Yet, in contrast, if you listen to many Christian media personalities to include mega and other church pastors today, Christ has hardly anything negative to say about what is going on in churches supposedly devoted to His Lordship. The ratio of five messengers and churches called to repentance to two fully commended has amazingly flip flopped in these latter days despite all of the same issues Christ raised being evident and far worse in countless churches!
As the Lord has had me write many times, it is as if He were in fact dead and not risen for all of the effect His written Word and living presence has among churches that profess to be Christian.1 Or else, how can you truly believe Christ is in your midst and sin in disobedience with impunity to His face as many do? Or are you actually believing the lie He has changed since what John recorded in His Revelation in spite of the fact it is written He is “the same yesterday, today and forever,” (Hebrews 13:8, NKJV)? His judgment among the churches is intensifying in these latter days because He has not changed nor abandoned what He inspired His apostle Peter to soberly write (1 Peter 4:17-18).2
Thus, Jesus Christ remains as He spoke to the messenger of the Laodicean church, “the Amen, the Faithful and True Witness, the Beginning of the creation of God,” (Revelation 3:14, NKJV). He is consistently and forever the standard and measure of truth so that those that know Him cannot help but say, “Amen” to whatever He says! Too, Jesus Christ is the standard and measure of faithfulness to God to the death; the ultimate “Witness” to what God requires in those faithful to Him! Finally also, He is positioned at the preeminent Head of creation and His Church as Creator, Savior, and Redeemer to the glory of God as the apostle Paul also declares (Colossians 1:13-18)!
Jesus Christ perfectly knows what a local church is supposed to look like as His design of the Church He assembles that transcends cultures, times and trends; reaching as she does into eternity (Ephesians 5:25-27)! For this reason, knowing the works of the church at Laodicea, He announces because they “are lukewarm,” “I will vomit you out of My mouth,” (Revelation 3:15-16, NKJV). This church was neither “cold” from lack of love for Christ as the church at Ephesus (Revelation 2:4) or “hot” with fervor and activity, but not through the Holy Spirit as the church at Sardis (Revelation 3:1-2) which were both painfully obvious in their need for correction and without repentance, judgment.
However, in being lukewarm the church at Laodicea like many large and suburban churches today are totally oblivious to their indifferent condition and are so sickening to the Lord in the manner of a stomach disturbance, He will violently vomit them out of His mouth! The cause of their lukewarm indifference toward the Lord and the faith is wealth. They were monetarily and materially well off and needed nothing they thought. And while being rich does not have to undercut the typical sense of dependence on Him most believers have who are not rich, the Laodiceans had allowed this to be the case for them. They could not see themselves as Christ did (Revelation 3:17).3
Speaking in the authority and infinite wisdom He presented Himself to this church, the Lord offers them “counsel” to obtain from Him “gold refined in the fire” so they might really be “rich” and other items to reverse their spiritual condition (Revelation 3:18, NKJV). Refined gold represents the faith-filled hard, but abundant life of one of His self-denying, cross bearing faithful disciples (Luke 9:21-26, 12:13-21, 18:18-30; John 10:10; 1 Timothy 6:6-16; 1 Peter 1:3-9)!4 As sick to the point of vomiting them out of His mouth as their self-satisfied indifference has made Him, the Lord acts to “rebuke and chasten” this church in “love” as He does all. He then charges them to be “zealous and repent;” to hear Him outside knocking and open “the door,” (Revelation 3:19-20, NKJV).
Once more too, the Lord speaks to him that would overcome and affirms one of His consistently made promises to reign with Him as a reward for faithfulness; the one who overcomes “granted” by Him to sit on His throne with Him as He “overcame” and sat down with His Father on His throne (Luke 22:28-30; Acts 5:27-32; 2 Timothy 2:11-13; 1 Peter 2:9; Revelation 1:4-6, 3:21, 5:5-10, NKJV). He then issues His standing directive to those in the church at Laodicea and where you attend with “an ear,” “to hear what the Spirit says to the churches,” (Revelation 3:22, NKJV). Clearly, a wealthy church flush in money, but spiritually indifferent does not impress the Lord. The risen, living Christ continues His cry among American churches, "Who is on the Lord's side?"
1 Read my February 9, 2014 post, Is There No King Among Us?, under the category, Call To Repent.
2 See the June 10, 2018 post, God’s Judgment Upon His House, under the category, Bible Prophecy and God’s Creatures.
3 While spiritual indifference may produce the busy works of religion, it never produces righteousness! This is why God can never be pleased with spiritual indifference
as He spoke through the prophet, Amos, to the eighth century B.C. ten northern tribes of Israel including specifically and harshly, wealthy women and judged them
(Amos 3:9-4:5, 5:10-15, 21-24, 6:1-8). It is also why Christ speaks in an attitude of revulsion toward it manifested in the first century A.D. church at Laodicea and all
that would follow them in guilt to the end. Such churches with thousands of dollars in the bank (in many cases for nothing but a rainy day to spend lavishly on them-
selves) have looked smugly at needy ministries like this one from our inception and refused to support us not realizing in their blindness that Christ ever looking and
booking, is going to judge them for this!
4 I write about the way of biblical disciples of Jesus Christ in my book, The Strong Man Of God: Back To Basics. Get a print copy or digital download of the book at
major internet booksellers such as Amazon, Barnes & Noble, ChristianBooks.com and Apple (digital only). You can also get a print copy in the Strong Man Store.
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