The City is Laodicea was found on the road to Colossae some forty miles southeast of Philadelphia. The city had become wealthy under Roman rule and were known for their production of wool garments. They were so wealthy in fact that after an earthquake in 60 A.D. the city had rebuilt itself off its own resources. There had been references to the existence of the church up into the fourteenth century, but now the city is nothing but ruins. Paul mentioned Laodicea in his letter to Colossae.
Revelation 3:14 – And to the angel of the church in Laodicea write: “The words of the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of God’s creation.”
CHRIST THE ETERNAL AND FAITHFUL WITNESS: Christ called Himself the “Amen” which mean “so be it,” something He used frequently during His time when He walked amongst us. As Dr. Walvoord states it: “As a title for Christ it indicates His sovereignty and the certainty of the fulfillment of His promises.”
He also called Himself the faithful and true Witness, which tells us that he see all and knows all. Within our minds and in our actions and when the time comes and those that do not understand why they are standing before the Great White Throne instead of in the audience looking upon the judgment that is soon to follow will then simply look upon the Glorified Jesus and they will instantly know the answer without even having to ask the question.
Revelation 3:15-16 – “I know your works: you are neither cold nor hot. Would that you were either cold or hot! So, because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of my mouth.
Christ does not mince words with those that lived in Laodicea. It made it clear and plain. Without works and faith together you are dead and a bitter taste unto God and must be cast out of the Body.
James 2 (KJV) – 14 What doth it profit, my brethren, though a man say he hath faith, and have not works? can faith save him? 15 If a brother or sister be naked, and destitute of daily food, 16 And one of you say unto them, Depart in peace, be ye warmed and filled; notwithstanding ye give them not those things which are needful to the body; what doth it profit? 17 Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone. 18 Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works. 19 Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble. 20 But wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead? 21 Was not Abraham our father justified by works, when he had offered Isaac his son upon the altar? 22 Seest thou how faith wrought with his works, and by works was faith made perfect? 23 And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God. 24 Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only. 25 Likewise also was not Rahab the harlot justified by works, when she had received the messengers, and had sent them out another way? 26 For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also.
Christ makes it very clear he would rather you be cold or against God then to be lukewarm. But what are works? The key to works is found within the two new commandments given to us by Christ:
Matthew 22(KJV) – 34 But when the Pharisees had heard that he had put the Sadducees to silence, they were gathered together. 35 Then one of them, which was a lawyer, asked him a question, tempting him, and saying, 36 Master, which is the great commandment in the law? 37 Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. 38 This is the first and great commandment. 39 And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. 40 On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.
Revelation 3:17-18 – “For you say, I am rich, I have prospered, and I need nothing, not realizing that you are wretched, pitiable, poor, blind, and naked. I counsel you to buy from me gold refined by fire, so that you may be rich and white garments so that you may clothe yourself and the shame of your nakedness may not be seen, and salve to anoint your eyes, so that you may see.”
This is also today’s church which has been seduced by the luxuries of this soft and pampering world we now live within. Even now the children revolt against their elders. Thinking they know better than those that have been in this world longer. They have been so spoiled that they wish to have everything just handed over to them. This is selfishness to the extreme. This is the total opposite of placing God first and treating all those about you as you would wish to be treated yourself. The golden rule is dead and it was killed by those that wished to kick God totally out of the world. Well now as violence is on the increase. Different social groups begin to self-segregate, refusing in interact with none but their “own.”
Revelation 3:19 – “Those whom I love, I reprove and discipline, so be zealous and repent”
Christ here makes it clear that those HE LOVES he will “reprove and discipline.” So the next time you feel like accusing someone, especially someone who appears to be a Christian, of “judging,” remember it may not be.
2 Timothy 4(KJV) – 4 I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom; 2 Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all long suffering and doctrine. 3 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; 4 And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables. 5 But watch thou in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, make full proof of thy ministry.
We are as Christians are instructed by the Bible to reprove, rebuke and to exhort and any that calls this “judging” are wishing to stay lukewarm and desire to be spit out of the Body of Christ.
Revelation 3:20-22 – “Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come to him and eat with him, and he with me. The one who conquers, I will grant him to sit with me on my throne, as I also conquered and sat down with my Father on His throne. He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.”