Revelation 1-3: The First Facet
Week 3, Saturday: The Church in Laodicea
Simply put, the church in Laodicea was sickening to the Lord. He could nearly vomit it out of His mouth, so bad was the taste of what that congregation had become. The believers in Laodicea had settled into a kind of complacency that saw them comfortable and self-satisfied in their faith. They had deceived themselves into thinking that their Christian life was as good as it could get, and they didn’t bother with cultivating the kind of zeal for witness and good works the Lord expects of His people. Out of His great love for the Church, Jesus confronted this congregation head-on and in-your-face. Would that He would do so in our day once again.
Read Revelation 3
Meditate on Revelation 3.14-22
1. Again, it’s important to note how Jesus introduces Himself to this church (v. 14): “the Amen, the Faithful and True Witness, the Beginning of the Creation of God.” Why would this way of introducing Himself have been especially relevant for this church?
2. The Laodiceans were deceived, thinking that everything about their faith was just fine. They had become complacent and content in a kind of status quo Christianity (v. 15). In fact, their situation was dire, at least, as the Lord saw it (vv. 17, 18). Could such a situation befall churches in our day? How does this happen? How would we ever be able to recognize if it did?
3. Meditate on verse 19. Recall that Jesus is giving this message to the pastor(s) of this church (v. 14). It was their duty to pass it along to the congregation. What does this suggest about the duty of pastors when it comes to the overall health and growth of the local church?
4. Meditate on verse 20. What does this look like in your life? Are you dining daily with the Lord over His Word (Jer. 15.16)? Are you being equipped, day by day, to overcome our natural tendency toward complacency?
5. What would it mean for the Laodicean Christians to “overcome”? What did Jesus promise them if they did? Meditate on Ephesians 2.6 and Colossians 3.1-3. Is this the perspective from which you live your life? Have you overcome to rule with King Jesus?
“neither cold nor hot” – Does this describe you in any area of your Christian life? Your prayer life? Love for and delight in God’s Word? Witness for the Lord? Good works of love? Let’s be blunt: Does the Lord delight in the savor of your Christian life, or do you make Him sick?
The Glory of God
Jesus is true, faithful, and eternal. His Word is the last word on everything. Meditate on verse 18. Suppose you were going to “buy” these commodities from King Jesus. What would you actually be seeking from Him?
Glory to Glory
Imagine a spectrum of spiritual life, with “cold” at the far left, let’s say, at number 1; “hot” at the far right, at number 10; and “lukewarm” in between at number 5. Where would put yourself on that spectrum? Why? Where would you like to be able to put yourself by the end of this study of the book of Revelation? What will it take for you to begin moving in that direction, from glory to glory, beginning today?
Today, share your memory verse for this week (Revelation 2.29) with a Christian friend, and briefly explain what you have learned about this verse.
Return, we beseech You, O God of hosts;
Look down from heaven and see,
And visit this vine
And the vineyard which Your right hand has planted,
And the branch that You made strong for Yourself.
It is burned with fire, it is cut down;
They perish at the rebuke of Your countenance.
Let Your hand be upon the man of Your right hand,
Upon the son of man whom You made strong for Yourself.
Then we will not turn back from You;
Revive us, and we will call upon Your name.
Restore us, O Lord God of hosts;
Cause Your face to shine,
And we shall be saved!
T. M. Moore
The book of Revelation is the culminating episode in the story of God’s covenant. To learn more about that covenant, and to discover the way it integrates all of Scripture into the Gospel of Jesus Christ, order a copy of T. M.’s book, I Will Be Your God, by clicking here.
Except as indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. © Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.