Chapter 3 continues on with the letters to the seven churches and today we focus on the Church at Laodicea. Last week I said that these last verses (14-22) in chapter 3 made a lasting impression on me. They do so because they so mirror many of the churches today. Indifference is an attitude that Christ utterly detests. There was a place near Laodicea famous for its hot mineral springs. Often, hot mineral springs are nauseating in their taste and make the person who drinks them want to be physically sick. This is a good practical example, one the people of that day would have understood, about how the indifference of the church at Laodicea
affected the risen Christ. The biggest stumbling block to anything we do in life is indifference, neither cold or hot is not as bad as being tepid, which feeds the very soul of indifference. Christianity has the power to make our lives strong and productive. The church has lost its relevance in the world today. A more graphic picture might be painted by saying… we, the church have lost our place at the table. Of course there are pockets of resistance, some over the last few years have become violent in their actions against Christianity but for the most part there is a neutrality …better said… total indifference. I have always believed that Salvation is not a group activity. It is a one on one thing, a God thing which only occurs when a person seeks Christ and asks for salvation. Jesus Christ works through individuals. There is always an underlying passive resistance to the doctrine of Christianity. People like to do their own thing and people who will not submit to Christ have therefore resisted him.
Romans 12:11-13… not lagging in diligence, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord; 12 rejoicing in hope, patient in tribulation, continuing steadfastly in prayer; 13 distributing to the needs of the saints, given to hospitality.
The people of this church had become lazy and indifferent to keeping the fire in their hearts burning for Christ.
The People at Laodicea had become distracted and at the same time comfortable in their own and their cities wealth.
Revelation 3: 14-17
‘These things says the Amen, the Faithful and True Witness, the Beginning of the creation of God: 15 “I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot. I could wish you were cold or hot. 16 So then, because you are lukewarm, and neither [k]cold nor hot, I will vomit you out of My mouth. 17 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…
Speaking from a secular perspective It was a very prosperous town in Asia Minor but from a spirituality perspective it was bankrupt. Laodicea prided itself on the magnificent garments it produces; but spiritually it is naked, and nakedness means shame. They were blind, even though they excelled in the manufacture of an eye salves. Laodicea had no wish to see itself as it was. I would add they were deaf to the sound of truth being spoken and they did not understand that the rebuke of God is not so much punishment as illumination. They remained blind by choice of an indifferent attitude. In verse 20 is a picture of Christ that has become a picture of great familiarity.
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.
A picture of Christ searching for sinful men and women, what greater love has any man, as great as Christ’s love for his creation?
No need to add a whole lot more, the simple truth is Laodicea valued the things of this world more than a relationship with the Living Christ. What about your church, what about you? Do you practice a religion that is deep in orthodoxy, devoid of passion that has only an ember of a once burning fire and find yourself slipping away from your call to serve Christ? A funny way to end this blog but a reminder to us all… Indifference… The Living Christ detests such behavior.
Life is Good