[Rev. 3:14] ¶ “To the angel of the church in Laodicea write the following: ¶ “This is the solemn pronouncement of the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the originator of God’s creation: [Rev. 3:15] ‘I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either cold or hot! [Rev. 3:16] So because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I am going to vomit you out of my mouth! [Rev. 3:17] Because you say, “I am rich and have acquired great wealth, and need nothing,” but do not realize that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind, and naked, [Rev. 3:18] take my advice and buy gold from me refined by fire so you can become rich! Buy from me white clothing so you can be clothed and your shameful nakedness will not be exposed, and buy eye salve to put on your eyes so you can see! [Rev. 3:19] All those I love, I rebuke and discipline. So be earnest and repent! [Rev. 3:20] Listen! I am standing at the door and knocking! If anyone hears my voice and opens the door I will come into his home and share a meal with him, and he with me. [Rev. 3:21] I will grant the one who conquers permission to sit with me on my throne, just as I too conquered and sat down with my Father on his throne. [Rev. 3:22] The one who has an ear had better hear what the Spirit says to the churches.’”
The Laodicean church had become like its famous lukewarm water. They weren’t totally against Christ – but neither were they totally for Christ. Yet interestingly, they still had works for Christ to speak of. Sometimes those who are busy for Christ are the ones most susceptible to forgetting about Christ!
What was the cause of the Laodicean’s spiritual indifference? Alarmingly to us Westerners, it was their prosperity! They had need of nothing. They had gold, fine clothes, and good health. But they were spiritually bankrupt, naked, and blinded. Christ summoned them to repent from their life of ease and receive His discipline. The other churches had to overcome adversity in order to fully follow Christ. But the Laodiceans were the most pitiable because they had to overcome their apathy induced by comfort, prosperity, and good health. While they may have thought of themselves as blessed by God, Christ’s shocking words to them revealed that they were the ones most missing out! It wasn’t their gold that made them “rich” – it was Christ’s “gold refined by fire” that could make them truly rich. Of all the messages that Christ gave to any of these Turkish churches, surely this one is the most unwelcomed by today’s Western Church. We have generally committed the same error as these dear Laodiceans. We have confused devotion to Christ with deeds done for Christ. We have confused material provision with the material of God’s riches. We have duped ourselves into thinking that “good” health means we are spiritually fit. And despite our natural obesity we are actually famished.
Against this plight, Christ offers us a real meal if we would but respond to His knocking at our doors and open ourselves up more fully to Him (vs 20).