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What Did the Laodiceans Lack?

WHY Did Jesus Say
He was Going to Reject (“spue”)
These People who Once Served Him?

Quality of life is not found in obtaining more money or material items. In fact, such a consumerism lifestyle guarantees, with no exception, misery, spiritual poverty, and a trip to hell (Luke 12, 16; Ephesians 5:5-7; 1 Timothy 6:4-11; Revelation 3:14-21, etc.). Do we not all know people, even people who were once saved, who are not now abiding in Christ and “have need of nothing” materially in this world, and yet are not happy? And what did Jesus say of their hell bound spiritual state?

“Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked:” Revelation 3:17 

“Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. 2 In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. 3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also. 4 And whither I go ye know, and the way ye know. 5 Thomas saith unto him, Lord, we know not whither thou goest; and how can we know the way? 6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” John 14:1-6

Is your mansion here or in eternal glory with Christ?

Like Laodicea
do we have
a false sense of

You are not prospering/prosperous because you drive an expensive vehicle. In fact, such reveals that you are shallow, care about what mere sinful men think in lieu of what God thinks, and are wasting God’s resources and will give account accordingly. You are not prosperous because you live in an excessively large, lavish earthly home. In fact, such may prevent you from a “mansion” in Heaven and will definitely downsize your “mansion”(rewards) in eternal glory (John 14:1-6).

Quite frankly, most people are not impressed with your little trinkets you use to prop up your insecurities based on your lack of a real relationship with Jesus Christ.

Anyone who relates material or financial wealth to one’s spiritual state is to be departed from (1 Timothy 6:3-5 KJV).

Jesus is all you really have. The sum total of the richness of your life (or lack thereof) is what you have of Christ who is the “exceeding great reward” (Genesis 15:1). Prosperity is primarily spiritual, not material:

“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ:” Ephesians 1:3

“Hearken, my beloved brethren, Hath not God chosen the poor of this world rich in faith, and heirs of the kingdom which he hath promised to them that love him?” James 2:5

Jesus’ Message to Laodicea and Equally to Us

While addressing the last of the seven churches of Revelation 2-3, Jesus said that the people of the apostate church of Laodicea were “wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked.” What led to them becoming backslidden? Here’s the answer:

“And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God; 15 I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot. 16 So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth. 17 Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked: 18 I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see. 19 As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent. 20 Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me. 21 To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne. 22 He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches.” Revelation 3:14-22

Firstly, let us acknowledge that when the Son of God says “thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked,” one thing’s for certain – you are not right with Him. Christ exposed their sins to them in order to get them to return to Him (to repent).

If you are “lukewarm” you no longer fear or truly serve God, but rather the false god of self.

WHY did Jesus say He was going to reject (“spue”) them? …  Jesus is God and knows the hearts of all men. In their hearts these people were saying “I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing.” They were serving the false god of self and mammon.  These people were financially prosperous and yet “miserable.” Sounds like many in America today who claim to be “Christians” and yet whose lives consist in nothing more than searching out new ways to entertain themselves, further pampering the miserable god of self. Consumerism has consumed the vast majority. Those who claim to be saved are willing to go to a church building to be told they are okay and yet, they lift no finger to obey Christ’s Great Commission command. Why? – Because they have not truly repented and are therefore consumed with trying to pamper the already overstuffed, gorged god of self. They are “miserable” just as Jesus says they would be here in this letter to the Laodiceans (American “Christians”).

Open your Bible and look at what God said about Sodom. Her sins are paralleled with Laodicea. There is truly “NO new thing under the sun” (Ecclesiastes 1:9). We can also look at the days of Noah leading up to the flood judgment. Christ warned about the days of Noah where Genesis 6 cites the sins men were committing. Today is no different. So many in the western world have never really suffered a day in their life. They are shallow, substance-less, sin-sick, self-serving, boasters, evil hearted, cowardly, and judgmental lovers of self (2 Timothy 3:1-7). These would rather curse the darkness instead of shining Christ’s light into it. They sit back and hurl their stones of condemnation at others while lifting no finger to help them in their hardship or struggles (Galatians 6:1-2). Compare this to the Good Samaritan who asked no question, made no hesitation, and hastened to help the man he came upon who was in a hardship (Luke 10:25-37).

Like the Laodiceans who were previously saved and yet had since backslidden, so many today also have no fear of God in their hearts. Many ignore and don’t even search out what Christ warned about in light of His coming. They are not ready to meet Him (see Luke 21:33-36). This is evidence of a hardened heart – one hardened “through the deceitfulness of sin” (Hebrews 3:12-15).

“There is no fear of God before their eyes.” Romans 3:18

The reason some have “no fear of God” in their lives is due to the pervasive influence of the OSAS (once saved always saved) mythical, diabolical lie.

The people in the city of Laodicea were wealthy. The commerce of that area of the world at that time was flourishing and yet, many of the people who had gotten saved there didn’t continue steadfastly seeking the LORD. Jesus said they trusted in their earthly wealth and Jesus told them that as a result they were “naked.” This simply means that His robe of righteousness no longer covered them and they were pending to go to eternal damnation if they didn’t repent. Let’s look at it again:

“Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked:” Revelation 3:17

Though rich in material goods, the Laodicean “believers” – who were once saved and yet now backslidden, were:

  • “wretched”
  • “miserable”
  • “poor”
  • “blind”
  • “naked”

Hoarding instead of dispensing earthly wealth will always lead one to trust in those fleeting riches instead of God who requires us to trust Him. This always leads to a hardened heart and apostasy.

Jesus warned us of this late hour before His soon return. He said that men would be living in total disregard for Him and for their own souls which hang in the balance. He told us they would largely have forgotten the LORD.

“For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark, 39 And knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.” Matthew 24:38-39

Does the Bible speak of people forgetting God and the consequences of such?

“The wicked shall be turned into hell, and all the nations that forget God.” Psalms 9:17

“Now consider this, ye that forget God, lest I tear you in pieces, and there be none to deliver.” Psalms 50:22

This citing of the sins of the Laodiceans clearly shows that they were hell bound and in need of returning to the LORD (Hosea 14:1-3). Because He loves them and is “not willing that any should perish (go to hell),” Jesus therefore instructs them to “repent”:

“As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent (turn back to the LORD). 20 Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.” Revelation 3:19-20

There is a direct correlation (connection) between your true spiritual state and your giving or lack of giving.

The people who get upset when stewardship is spoken about reveal that they are serving mammon/self and not the LORD. They have an evil eye or an idolatrous focus for living. Listen to Jesus:

“Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: 20 But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: 21 For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also. 22 The light of the body is the eye: if therefore thine eye be single (purely focused on Christ), thy whole body shall be full of light. 23 But if thine eye be evil (focused on self), thy whole body shall be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in thee be darkness, how great is that darkness! 24 No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.” Matthew 6:19-24

The reason many who claim to be serving the One who gave all do not give of their temporal substance is due to the fact that they are not giving their lives to Christ daily (Matthew. 10:8). When we truly give over our lives (including our will) to the Savior, all else then belongs to Him. Jesus came and gave it all – that was His purpose when He came (John 15:13; 10:17-18, etc.). Just what are you giving? Have you begun by giving your life (the complete control of it) over to the One who came and gave His all for you?

The more of us we give over to Christ, the freer He blesses us to be. While working with another ministry on Wednesdays over the last few months, I’ve been blessed to begin many new friendships with older Christians. Many times they tell me about how they are getting rid of stuff, downsizing, and consolidating their lives and living quarters. You can see the joy in their eyes and the liberty as they are breaking free of the encumbrances of this life they allowed themselves to become entangled with. They were bogged down for years and are rejoicing to be getting free.

The more we give, the freer we become – free from the sins that cause us to stumble in sin and from the love of this sinful world.

“Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him.” 1 John 2:15

Think about this in light of what our LORD Jesus taught when speaking to those who had just initially repented and begun an abiding walk with Him:

“Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on him, If ye continue in my word (obeying Him via what He said in His Word), THEN are ye my disciples indeed; 32 And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” John 8:31-32

You see, it’s not those who simply hear the truth that are made freer and freer by Christ, but rather those who hear it and obey it.

Only as we continue to obey Him through His Word are we made free. Church attendance will never make any soul free. As we truly follow Jesus, we are divesting ourselves – giving ourselves over to Him more and more, holding on to nothing of self. We begin to learn that our existence is not about us but rather about the One who gave us life and came and gave His life to buy us back to Himself from a life of sin (Ephesians 2:1-13).

If you are not giving more and more of yourself to the LORD, you have backslidden, are apostate, and in need of true repentance (getting back to/with the LORD). Walking with Christ – continuing in His Word – always (without fail) produces a life of giving. We give our lives as a living sacrifice to Him who offered for His Father and us the ultimate sacrifice.

We owe a debt we cannot pay. Jesus paid a debt He did not owe.

“I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. 2 And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.” Romans 12:1-2

Your life is no longer your own but rather Christ’s:

“What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? 20 For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.” 1 Corinthians 6:19-20

Who are You Living For?

“And that he died for all, that they which live should not henceforth live unto themselves, but unto him which died for them, and rose again.” 2 Corinthians 5:15

WE ARE most miserable when we are hoarding instead of giving – our lives.

What’s the “more blessed” life look like?

“I have shewed you all things, how that so labouring ye ought to support the weak, and to remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he said, It is more blessed to give than to receive.” Acts 20:35

RED FLAG: You attend a “church” and aren’t digging into, devouring, and memorizing God’s Word daily. Backslidden!

So you have time to read the news in the morning but no time or desire and discipline to seek God in His holy Word and prayer when you first awake in the mornings? Self-idolatry!

God’s Word cannot and will not get into you until you get into it!

If anything is more important to you than knowing the LORD through studying His Word, you are not ready to meet Jesus.

Prayer of Returning: Holy Father, You gave all when You gave Your only begotten Son who came and died for our sins. You’ve also called me to lay down my life, to lose my life in this fleeting world. I have not done well at giving over my life to You … You alone who are worthy of my full, unreserved worship. Right this moment I ask You to forgive my sin of having another god before You which is self idolatry and spiritual adultery. I have alienated the affections of my heart away from You and onto myself. For this I ask You to forgive me and I right here and now turn to You. Right this moment I lay my life in Your holy hands. Into Your hands I submit my spirit – my whole being. Not my will but Thine be done! I am no longer my own. I am Yours. I am dead and my life is hid with Christ in God. I love You Jesus and am ceaselessly grateful that You bought me with the price of Your own blood! You must increase but I must decrease. I ask You to unite my heart to fear Thy holy name! Teach me daily to lay myself aside and to give the reins over to You! In Jesus’ Name, amen.

Fresh Start with GodWealth Wasted on the Worship of SelfEternal Security ExposedThe Return of Christ | Support | Podcasts

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