Thoughts on Revelation (7)
The church at Laodicea held a mistaken view of itself. The people saw themselves as successful and in need of nothing. They were filled with pride. History tells us that they refused help from the Roman government following a devastating earthquake in that region. To this self-deluded church Jesus identifies Himself as the Faithful and True Witness, and as the Ruler of God’s creation. He is the One who can truly and rightfully evaluate them. This is a reminder to us that Christ indeed knows us better than we know ourselves.
Jesus tells the Laodicean church that they are lukewarm, neither cold nor hot. This is a graphic description with which they could identify. Laodicea’s water cane from a distant source through pipes. Their drinking water was lukewarm and hardly drinkable. In the neighboring town of Hierapolis there were hot springs used for medicinal purposes. In the nearby town of Colosse, their water came from a cold mountain stream. Using such well known images Christ urges the church at Laodicea to be refreshing like the cold water or healing like the hot water from the medicinal springs.
The Lord used imagery in His message to this church counseling them to receive from Him the things necessary for being a refreshing and healing congregation. These provisions would come as they seek and yield to His Spirit. He offers them the invitation to open their heart’s door and allow Him to fellowship with them.
The lesson we learn from this church calls us to hear what the Spirit is telling us. When Jesus knocks, we need to open our minds and hearts to what He desires of us. What He says, we need to do. It is His evaluation that we must accept. We must repent when He shows us our sin.