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 Sermons on important subjects by Rev. Paul C. Jong

 

Letter to
The Church of Laodicea


< Revelation 3:14-22 >

"And to the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write, 'These things says the Amen, the Faithful and True Witness, the Beginning of the creation of God: 'I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot. I could wish you were cold or hot. So then, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will vomit you out of My mouth. Because you say, 'I am rich, have become wealthy, and have need of nothing'—and do not know that you are wretched, miserable, poor, blind, and naked—I counsel you to buy from Me gold refined in the fire, that you may be rich; and white garments, that you may be clothed, that the shame of your nakedness may not be revealed; and anoint your eyes with eye salve, that you may see. As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten. Therefore be zealous and repent. Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me. To him who overcomes I will grant to sit with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne.' He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.'"



Exegesis

Verse 14: "And to the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write, 'These things says the Amen, the Faithful and True Witness, the Beginning of the creation of God:'"

Our Lord came to this earth and obeyed God the Father to the point of His death to fulfill the will of God. In other words, He obeyed any command with an "Amen" if it was the Father's will. Our Lord is the faithful servant of the Kingdom of God the Father and the true witness who testified of Himself as the Son of God and the Savior. Our Lord is the God of the creation of the beginning.


Verse 15: "I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot. I could wish you were cold or hot."

God rebuked the servant of the Church of Laodicea for his lukewarm faith. This servant deserved God's wrath. If anyone's faith is lukewarm before God, he/she must make one's faith clear by making it either cold or hot. The faith that God demands from us is a clearly defined faith that is either cold or hot. This clear faith is also an absolute requirement in believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit.

When it comes to believing in God, there are two kinds of believers. On the one hand, we have those who believe that the gospel of the water and the Spirit is the true gospel, and that there is no other gospel but this gospel. On the other hand, we have those who believe that there are other gospels, apart from the gospel of the water and the Spirit. And the faith of the later is only lukewarm.

They think that it is enough to believe in Jesus, and that there is no need to discern between the true gospel and the false gospels. Some of them even think that Jesus is not the only Savior, but that salvation can be found in other religions of this world as well. Like their faith, the faith of the servant of the Laodicean Church was also lukewarm, without any clear separation between the true and the false gospels—that there is no other gospel but the gospel of the water and the Spirit. This is why this servant brought worries to God and garnered His wrath.


Verse 16: "So then, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will vomit you out of My mouth."

Our Lord God demanded a clear faith from His servant. We must realize that God does not appreciate a faith that is neither hot nor cold. When we believe in the Lord, therefore, we must clearly and unambiguously set our hearts by measuring them to the Word of God and stand firm on His will by believing in it. Those who have thus been born again must also clearly stand at the side of the biblical gospel of the water and the Spirit, and uncompromisingly face against those who spread other gospels apart from this true gospel. God tells us that if the righteous do not stand at the clear side of faith, He will vomit them out. Where, then, is your faith standing now?


Verse 17: "Because you say, 'I am rich, have become wealthy, and have need of nothing'—and do not know that you are wretched, miserable, poor, blind, and naked—"

Those whose faith in the Lord is lukewarm believe their faith to be just fine, and so they remain oblivious to the poverty of their faith. Because the servant of the Church of Laodicea was also beheld by his lukewarm faith, he, too, failed to realize just how wretched he actually was. To have clear and definitive faith, therefore, he needed to face trials and persecution for the truth, and go through the battle of faith against the liars. Only then could he find out just how faithless, poor, and naked he really had been. We must all have clear faith before the Lord.


Verse 18: "I counsel you to buy from Me gold refined in the fire, that you may be rich; and white garments, that you may be clothed, that the shame of your nakedness may not be revealed; and anoint your eyes with eye salve, that you may see."

God told the angel of the Church of Laodicea to get his faith refined. The servant of the Laodicean Church must rebuild the foundation of his faith in the gospel of the water and the Spirit and be clothed in the garment of the whole righteousness. He must also see himself, return, and redefine his faith clearly. He must keep his faith in perseverance, and learn and fulfill his hope by the refinement of his faith.

You, too, must go through heavy oppression and persecution for the gospel of the water and the Spirit, the gospel of truth given by God. Only then can you realize how precious the truth of this gospel of the water and the Spirit is. Have you ever broken your own righteousness of man to keep the righteousness of God earned through the gospel of the water and the Spirit? Those who have broken the righteousness of man know how precious and blessed God's righteousness is. You must realize that without your faith that trusts in the Lord, your life of faith would simply turn miserable. Therefore, you must learn from the faith the Lord gave to His foregoing servants before us, and cover the shame of your faithlessness.

We must not forget the fact that it takes sacrifice to learn the true faith. Because the true faith is learnt by following the walk of faith of the spiritual precursors step by step, we must pay the price of sacrifice. We must also be ready to lose the things of the world for the sake of the construction of the Lord's Kingdom and the advancement of our faith, and to throw away everything for the Lord.


Verse 19: "As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten. Therefore be zealous and repent."

The Lord rebukes and chastens those who know and believe in His love, if their faith is without works. Those who are loved by the Lord, therefore, must work hard for Him and follow Him with true faith.


Verse 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 dine with him, and he with Me."

Those who have become the servants of God share their lives with Him both in joy and in sorrow. Those who work for the Lord live by always believing in the Word of the Lord, and, through their faith, our Lord always fulfills all His works.


Verse 21: "To him who overcomes I will grant to sit with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne."

Want to know more about the Revelation? Please click the banner below to get your free book on the Revelation.

True faith is gained or lost depending on whether one is ready to embrace martyrdom or not. Those who fight against Satan by believing in the Word of the Lord will gain victory and be glorified with the Lord. The saints and God's servants are always engaged in a spiritual battle against Satan. In this battle, they can always overcome by believing in the Word of the Lord. Those who thus overcome in their fight against Satan will be glorified with the Lord.


Verse 22: "He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches."

The saints must always listen to the voice of God and follow the lead of the Holy Spirit. When they do, their faith becomes one that walks with the Holy Spirit, and spiritual victory will always be theirs.

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