John addressed seven letters to seven real churches that existed during the time he wrote the book of Revelation. In Revelations 2 and 3, we find these churches included Ephesus, Smyrna, Pergamum, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia, and Laodicea. All these cities were in modern-day Turkey, near the island of Patmos from where
John wrote the book of Revelation. Each one’s message, though specific to its situation, also offers applications for our lives today. Ephesus was commanded to return to its first love (Revelation 2:4). Smyrna was told it would endure persecution (Revelation 2:10). Pergamum was called to repentance (Revelation 2:16). Thyatira was commanded to remove its false prophetess (Revelation 2:20). Sardis needed to wake from its sleep (Revelation 3:2). Philadelphia was to continue its patient endurance (Revelation 3:10). Laodicea was to end its lukewarm faith (Revelation 3:16). I want us to consider what John says to Laodicea.
If you had your choice, would you prefer an ice-cold glass of milk or a lukewarm one? An ice-cold bottle of Coke or a lukewarm one? If you had your choice, would you prefer a pleasantly hot bowl of soup or a lukewarm one? A pleasantly hot steak or a lukewarm one? Most everyone is to some degree picky about the temperature of our food and drinks. The coffee has got to be just right. The iced tea must be, iced. Lukewarm is just not going to cut it!
Should it surprise us, then, that lukewarm is not going to cut it with God either! This passage from Revelation 3, which Jesus addressed to Christians – “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” (3:15- 16). Sometimes, I think we believe that lukewarm Christianity is better than being cold. However, a lukewarm Christian is nauseating to Jesus. Folks, it’s time for us to turn up the heat! Lukewarm won’t cut it with God! He said so. We must make a real commitment to serving God. As we spoke about on Sunday evening, do our priorities match our identity? What is your identity? Do you identify as a Christian? -ToddDownload PDF