Verse of the Day Devotion: Revelation 3:15
“I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot; I wish that you were cold or hot.” – Revelation 3:15
This verse is found in the list of the seven churches of Asia Minor and speaks specifically of the last one mentioned, the church in Laodicea. Here we see Christ saying to the church that He knows their deeds, that they are neither hot or cold. What He is essentially saying is that what He sees there is ambivalence and irresolution.
If they had been hot, they would have burned with passion for the truth and God. They would have desired do to all they could for the Lord to bring the gospel to the lost and to give God the glory for all He has done for them, their salvation, sanctification and future glorification. There is a general order of service, but open to whatever is needed by the people.
If they had been cold, they would do things for formality’s sake; because it is the way things are done. Not much is accomplished because the service is more important than the outcome. A successfully formal church is the desired outcome, a service pleasing to the Lord, not necessarily the effect on the parishioners.
We can easily see how hot is very much desired over cold, but why is cold preferred over lukewarm? Because, in the end they are endeavoring to please God without really understanding how. They believe that at least they are giving to God what He desires, formal services which do not deviate from the norm. Lukewarm has the idea of indifference; ‘I do not really care what happens.’ They are essentially Christian in name only.
Let’s look at a classic example of cold and hot, The apostle Paul. Before his conversion on the road to Damascus, he would be considered cold. What He did was because the Law told him to. He was passionate that the Law be completely and totally obeyed. The Law was what was preached, obeyed and therefore important. This was the only way to please God. He went as far as to arrest anyone who belonged to the cult of Christianity. However, after His conversion he became hot. He was fervent for the word, and he had a passion for Christ like no other. He preached Christ for what He did on the cross to provide salvation to as many as received; to the point that he suffered and eventually died for the cause of Christ.
My question to all who are reading this is, are you hot, cold or lukewarm? If you are lukewarm, He will spew you out of His mouth. For, just as lukewarm water is a place where germs and bacteria can thrive; ultimately infecting the body, so is the lukewarm Christian capable of infecting the church body with ambivalence, they profess Christianity without really living it out. Here is what Christ said about the lukewarm, “So because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of My mouth. Because you say, “I am rich, and have become wealthy, and have need of nothing,” and you do not know that you are wretched and miserable and poor and blind and naked, I advise you to buy from Me gold refined by fire so that you may become rich, and white garments so that you may clothe yourself, and that the shame of your nakedness will not be revealed; and eye salve to anoint your eyes so that you may see.” Revelation 3:15-18. Note what He said, “Because you say, “I am rich, and have become wealthy, and have need of nothing,” The lukewarm believe they are just fine; they do not need Him.
We need to understand we need Christ, for He is the way of salvation. We must, in everything we do and think, please Him. We must never, as Christians, get to the point that we believe we have all we need, and therefore, we do need Him. Do we really want to be vomited (the actual idea of spit here) out of Christ and the kingdom?
William Funkhouser MDiv, ThD, Founder and President of True Devotion Ministries, Inc.