Que the Halloween music and horror that runs through the bodies of individuals as they are listening to and/or watching a horror film. That is the way some of us view the book of Revelations from the Bible. It is the book that shakes individuals to their core. It is not all sugary and sweet as the other books, rather it is the book of horror.Why? It paints vivid pictures of what’s to come using the mark of the beast, a horned devil, and even speaks of tumultuous or disorderly times to come. No one enjoys reading from the book, because we believe it will shed light on our issues and cause us to come face to face with our own problems. No one wants to hear of the end of times or the signs of the end of times. We prefer to live in our little bubbles of vanity and idealistic ways. This way gives us a sense of control over our lives and what comes and goes. Some of you still don’t believe me. Let me prove it to you. Whenever it’s time for people to quote their favorite scripture, how many times do you hear a person quote anything from Revelation?
Before us is a question that needs to be answered by each and everyone of us. It’s a question that causes self-evaluation to come into play. Here’s the tricky thing about self-evaluation: It can cause you to lie to your own self if the criteria is not properly given. It can deceive you into believing something about yourself (either positive or negative) that’s not accurate. However, to ensure that none of us miss the mark with this evaluation, God has given us this text to base our thoughts on. In the text, we have come across a particular kind of church that claims to be in possession of both wealth and worship, prosperity and praise, production and Holy Ghost power, or resources and relationship. Oh yes, they hold church in accordance with the day of the week it is to be held, they sing all the songs to offer worship to God, they say Lord, I love you and adore you, and they even say there’s nobody like you. I would even go as far as to say that they even get deep sometimes and say Lord I’m available to use, I give myself to you Lord, and (the real church favorite) fill me up God. However, their lifestyles were not in agreement with the faith they proclaimed. They did this for quite sometime, until God decided that enough is enough. So, He sent word to the church that He has become so nauseous with their vanity and their ways to the point where he was on the verge of spitting them out of his mouth. In other words, he was ready to vomit as a result of their lukewarm ways being so sickening to Him. Before we move on we must first discuss these lukewarm, hot, or cold ways.
To be hot or cold is to be totally souled out (hot) or have a total disregard of a matter (cold). The best way that I can explain this matter is like this, to be hot is to be a true believer and doer, and to be cold is to be an unbeliever. Lukewarm is the category where most of the people who fit into it do not even realize they are. This is a kind of people who try to use faith or God when it’s convenient. Yes, you heard (read) me right! It’s the kind of people that enjoy living life the way they want to with no regard for God or the things of God, at least until trouble strikes. Once trouble strikes, they are the first to call out for help and get upset when it seems as if He does not answer. So upset that they may even denounce the faith or walk of Christianity, and blame their misfortune on there being no God. That’s not all though. Lukewarm Christians are also people who claim to be trusting and holding on to their faith, but in reality they are trusting and holding on to their finances. In other words, as long as they have the finances, they have all the faith in the world. However, when their finances take a blow, then so does their faith. Why? They feel that God would not do such a thing. I know I done stepped on a few toes and corns with this word, but I have to do what I am instructed to do (teach the infallible and unadulterated gospel of Jesus Christ). Some of you may be wondering where you fit in at, but just hang in their a little while longer and we shall all see where we fit.
Now, why would God be so nauseous to the point of vomiting when it comes to Lukewarm people? You would think it is the people who don’t believe that would cause this kind of sickness, but that’s not the case here. Here, God tells them I would prefer that you be either hot or cold. Can I make my first suggestion? God was not so much disgusted by their doings, rather He was disgusted by their lack of ability to make a decision. Need Bible? “Now therefore fear the Lord, and serve him in sincerity and in truth: and put away the gods which your fathers served on the other side of the flood, and in Egypt; and serve ye the Lord . And if it seem evil unto you to serve the Lord, choose you this day whom ye will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell: but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord (Joshua 24:14-15).” Here Joshua is telling the people that they should be willing to serve the Lord who has brought them this far (giving them victory after victory). However, he continues by saying if you should choose not to serve the Lord God, then choose which God you will serve: either the gods (idols) of your fathers or the gods (idols) of the Amorites (which is the land that you currently live in as a result of God giving you the victory). In other words, if you’re going to serve me then serve me, but if not choose who you will serve. Either way, Make A Decision!
I believe God was saying to the people that I would love and it is my desire for you to be hot by choosing to serve me with all of your heart. If that be not the case, then choose to be cold and not acknowledge me or believe in me. However, do not fall into the category of possessing a godly form while denying the power thereof (lukewarm). For those that don’t know this is Bible, 2 Timothy 3:5, and it is perhaps (my belief) an additional reason why God was so nauseous with the people. In 2 Timothy, God instructs us to turn away or move from around such kind of people. Why? They are the kind of people that are immature, deceivers, unprincipled, corrupt, and foolish. Those are not my words, but those of the Word of God. These are the people that could be likened to the Laodiceans of which Revelation spoke of. However, here’s my question: what would cause someone to fall into this category or this level of opposition against God? Oh, there’s no need for this question because the answer is embedded within the text. The people were self-indulged to the point where they thought themselves to be something in which they were not. They thought they had everything they needed and that they didn’t need God anymore. The lifestyle they were afforded stagnated their development or maturity in Christ; furthermore, it clouded their vision. It’s like the old school people would say: “They were too smart for their own good.”
For all lukewarm Christians that are stuck in a state of deception by your own mind, I have a word from the Lord for you. He sent me here to tell you that if you are one of those people who enjoys playing it close to the chest or fence, trying to just skirt your way through life, hoping-wishing-praying that you do enough to just barely make it into the gates, then you my friend are a lukewarm Christian or person. You my friend are on the verge of being spewed from the mouth of God. But, there’s still hope for you! In comes the part of the text where God says to buy from Him the gold that has been tried in the fire. He says for as many as He loves, those He rebukes and chastises. In other words, whatever provision you acquire let it be from Him as a result of ultimate resolve and commitment to following Him in spite of. Let it not come from treasures that you have stored up for yourselves. Does this mean that you should not make money, invest money, save money, etc? It absolutely does not; however, the warning is not to let that be where your trust is placed. Is it saying that you shouldn’t have nice things in life? It most assuredly does not, but it is saying that everything that you acquire should be the result of your holding fast to His will, His way, and His plan for achieving such things. It should not be done in such a way as to compromise neither your relationship with Him nor your faith in Him. The word that God is attempting to convey is come unto Him for only He can make you truly rich (both naturally and spiritually), fully clothed (naturally and spiritually), and divinely healed (naturally and spiritually). Well Kean, I have already chosen to be hot but I’m facing some form of lack in my life. What’s the word for me? God’s got you covered also.
There is somebody out there who may be wondering why it seems that sometimes God does not hear them or see their issues. It seems that you have to live life paycheck to paycheck, bill to bill, and need to need without ever getting a break or a stretch of relief. You may be unemployed trying to survive and figure this thing out. You may even be a single parent or just a parent in general trying to provide for you family while continually having to make ends meet. Believe it or not, you are neither alone nor are you the first and only person to have to go through and experience this. However, don’t turn to wickedness or return to your old ways. You don’t have to commit evil, senseless, heartless, and adulterated acts in order to make it. God gave me this word for you. He said, “when you decide that you are going to fully trust in Him and do what He says do then He becomes the bridge that fills the void between the two ends. The two ends do not ever have to meet; however, as long as they connect at the designated start and finish of the bridge you have connected to the way maker. Now, while the bridge is being constructed there will be some delays and some detours, but rest assured that if you are trusting in me there will be signs posted instructing you of the way to take. Yes, it may seem out of the way and maybe even inconvenient for you but hang in there for soon you shall come forth and move about your life in peaceful transition.” I do not know who else that was for, but I know it was for me. Somebody may be saying they need Bible to back that up. Well here it is, “Behold, I go forward, but he is not there; and backward, but I cannot perceive him: On the left hand, where he doth work, but I cannot behold him: he hideth himself on the right hand, that I cannot see him: But he knoweth the way that I take: when he hath tried me, I shall come forth as gold (Job 23:8-10).”
This gold is that one has been tried, tested, justified, and glorified by God himself. It is at this point where we arrive at the end portion of the text. Jesus says that he will stand at the door knocking, and if anyone hears the knock and opens the door he will come in unto him and be with him and him with he. He continues saying to the one that will overcomes, to him will be granted access to sit on the throne with me, just as I have overcame and am seated on the throne with my Father. In other words, there’s still time for you to open the door and allow Jesus to come in and dwell with you. How does he dwell with you? He allows you to drink from the cup of persecution and eat the bread of affliction, which is also the same that he had to endure during his time upon the face of the earth. However, at the appointed time he has promised that God will perfect and perform everything He has predestined for you. There’s only one thing needed: you have to choose to get hot and stay hot. Stay near the fire that purifies. Stay near the fire that justifies. Dwell near the fire that glorifies. Why? It is this same fire that will also stabilize you in your walk of faith with God. Don’t allow life and it’s circumstances to change your stance causing you to become cold (unbelieving), and by all means do not fall into the category of being lukewarm (serving God as a convenience instead of a commitment). So, as I close I want to leave you with this choice: Hot or Cold: Choose Ye This Day? Be blessed and stay encouraged!