Posted by: pastormikemcdowell | February 15, 2015

February 15, 2015 “Blissful, Fatal Adaptation”

“And to the angel of the church in La-odice′a write: ‘The words of the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of God’s creation. “I know your works: you are neither cold nor hot. Would that you were cold or hot!  So, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spew you out of my mouth.  For you say, I am rich, I have prospered, and I need nothing; not knowing that you are wretched, pitiable, poor, blind, and naked… Those whom I love, I reprove and chasten; so be zealous and repent.  Behold, I stand at the door and knock; if any one hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me.” (Revelation 3: 14-17, 19-2o)

Good Morning and Blessed Lord’s Day Everyone!

Perhaps you’ve heard the story, (scientifically verifiable, I might add), of a frog, that when placed in a pot of boiling water, will immediately jump out to safety. This same frog, however, if placed in a pot of cooler water that is gradually being heated to the boiling point, will remain in the water until it is boiled to death, blissfully but fatally adapting to its environment. To me, the fate of the frog in analogous to the situation that existed in the Laodicean church. The judgment rendered by Christ to this church is that, as God’s people, they had become “lukewarm” in their faith, thinking themselves to be spiritually well-off, when in fact, they had become “wretched, pitiable, poor, blind, and naked.”  Like the frog in the pot of slowly boiling water, they had become totally unaware of their own dire straits. Their worship and service had become so distasteful to the Lord that he declared “I will spew you out of my mouth.”  Clearly, the Lord was not at all pleased by the “drink offering” of pseudo-worship presented to him by this particular church. But being the good husband he is to his bride, the Church, Christ offers a remedy, for he loves his church. He reminds the Laodecian church of its condition, and announces to them, “Those whom I love, I reprove and chasten; so be zealous and repent.” In his grace, he provides them a way out before they “croak” (pun intended). Then, he says something that has often been taken out of context by many a reader of this passage. He says, “Behold, I stand at the door and knock; if any one hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me.”  Out of context, many have taken this as an invitation on Christ’s part for us to open the door of our hearts and let him enter. There’s even a famous picture depicting Jesus knocking on a door with no handle on the outside of the door, requiring that the door be opened by the occupant in order to allow him entrance. But considering the context of this passage, we have a much different picture. Rather than this being some sort of invitation to let Christ into our hearts, it is more of a knock of warning. It’s more like…”Hey…I smell something burning in there! Open up! I’m here to rescue you. I can see what is happening. You don’t know what you’re doing! I’m having none of what you’ve prepared to serve me. Open up and we’ll start over and I’ll dine with you.” 

Lukewarm commitment to Christ is unacceptable. He likes his worship to be hot and afire with passion. He also enjoys it when it is cool and refreshing, reviving the soul. Reassess your own spiritual temperature. Are you hot, cold, or lukewarm? Let’s pray!

Merciful Father; our desire is to bring a worship offering delightful to you and reviving to us. Fill our hearts with rejoicing in Your presence as we gather once more before the Throne of Grace, for this we pray in Jesus’ Holy Name. Amen!

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