Today’s reading is Revelation 3
Have you ever received a letter from someone that was a little harsh, but true? I’ve received some rejection letters, some letters about my kids doing weird things, and a few letters of thanks or appreciation. I’ve thrown the rejection letters away but I kept the letters about my kids and the appreciation. While they were painful to read initially, they were also filled with encouragement and hope. The three churches mentioned in Revelation chapter 3 received letters, but they were not left without feeling encouraged and hopeful.
The church of Sardis was deemed “dead” and they were instructed to “wake up”! At one time they had been strong in their faith but they let it fizzle. They were urged to get back to the basics of what they believed at the very beginning. If they didnt wake up they would miss out on His return.
The church of Philadelphia also received a letter. They Lacked strength but they were obedient and did not deny Him. They were encouraged to hold tightly to whatever strength they had and use the gifts God gave them to keep their faith. Lastly, the church in Laodicea. They were lukewarm in their faith. Their riches and self sufficiency took the place of their need for God. But they were reminded that in the midst of their riches they were actually “wretched, miserable, poor, blind, and naked”. They were encouraged to be diligent and turn from their indifference. The things of God are greater than any riches obtained in this lifetime.
Rev 3:20-22 “Look! I stand at the door and knock. If you hear me calling and open the door, I will come in, and we will share a meal as friends. I will invite everyone who is victorious to sit with me on my throne, just as I was victorious and sat with my Father on the throne. Anyone who is willing to hear should listen to the spirit and understand what the spirit is saying to the churches.”
Which of these letters would you be receiving? Are you dead in your faith? Weak? Or lukewarm? God disciplines those he loves. May we hear the encouragement in the midst of the discipline to turn from our ways back to Him.