2002-05-08 - Our Neglected Savior
Revelation 3:20 Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him, and will dine with him, and he with Me.
The above verse is part of Christ's message to the church in Laodicea. We learn from history that the apostles visited Laodicea early in their ministry of establishing the church. Laodicea soon had a large and growing church. This growth eventually led to pride and to a confidence that was based on self and not in Christ. Thus we read in Revelation 3:16 that they were "lukewarm." They had not renounced the Christian faith, but they lacked a genuine devotion to the things of Christ. In verse 17, Christ says to them, "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."
A stunning indictment upon them, to be sure. After a plea from Christ for them to repent, He says in verse 20, "behold, I stand at the door, and knock." This verse is not only a warning of the danger they were in, but it is a profession from Christ to them that He is still near to them. He is at the door. He is there to renew and revive them.
And let us not foolishly say, "that message was for the church in Laodicea." Verse 22 will not let us do this: "He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches." Not only does the message of lukewarmness and the nearness of Christ apply personally to us, but all the messages of Christ to all the seven churches also apply to us. It is for us to take this personally.
Spiritual lukewarmness creeps up upon us. It is a spiritual lethargy that grows like a vine upon our faith and creeps ever so slowly, as it takes over and we become complacent. As the cares of the world invade our lives and the issues of life press upon us, Christ takes a back seat and He becomes our neglected Savior. If you can't admit that this happens in your life, then you are like the church of Laodicea.
But if you know your heart and you know that every day is not a flowing walk with your Savior Jesus Christ, then rejoice, for Christ is at the door, knocking. Take a moment and think of the dignity, worth and glory of who is at your door. You should wonder in amazement at who is knocking. But don't be fooled into thinking that you should clean your spiritual house before you open the door. No, only Christ can clean your spiritual house. Your job is to get the door.
The gospel of Christ is for those who have believed and for those who will believe. We don't know who will believe and so, as Christians, we share the good news of Christ with others. But when we come to Christ, the gospel is still for us. The tendency has been to limit Revelation 3:20 to a "get saved verse." This is tragic. It is much more than that. It speaks of a compassionate, loving Savior who desires to be in fellowship and communion with us.
Sometimes as Christians, we make lukewarmness our career. Christ is at the door with a better job offer. His knock is not one of condemnation or judgment. It is one of love and compassion that seeks a relationship with His beloved.
"And the Spirit and the bride say, 'come.' And let the one who hears say, 'come.' And let the one who is thirsty come; let the one who wishes, take the water of life without cost." Revelation 22:17
Soli Deo Gloria,