August 29, 2021
Scripture: “I know your works: you are neither cold nor hot. Would that you were either cold or hot! So, because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of my mouth.” Revelation 3:15-16 ESV
Observation: Completing the loop of the seven churches of Asia Minor, the last prophecy is spoken to the church in Laodicea, historically located about 45 miles southeast of Philadelphia in the Lycus Valley. At the crossroad of two trade routes, it became a leading commercial center. Resultantly, many of its citizens prospered and enjoyed the best comforts of life, including exquisite wool garments and superior medical care. In particular, Laodicea’s medical school became world-famous for developing an ointment that reduced inflammation of the eye. Hence, the prophecy spoken against this lukewarm church addresses its self-sufficient materialism (verse 18). Jesus called the church to recognize that they were blind to their sin and advised them to cover their sinful nakedness in garments refined by the fire of the Holy Spirit. Then he offered them this gracious invitation: “Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me” (verse 20).
Takeaway: In our prosperity, as Christians, we are prone to settling for second-best, for immediate pleasures and comforts that leave us lukewarm in our faith. The antidote? Listen and respond. Open the door when Jesus knocks, when he invites us to “taste and see that the Lord is good” (Psalm 34:1 and 8) and find our satisfaction in him alone.
Prayer: Father God, in your mercy, disturb us when we become complacent in our faith. Please help us to be quick to respond when your Son knocks and wakes us from our stupor. Amen.
Rev. Gordon Green, M.Div., M.A. Counseling