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Wednesday, December 06, 2017

Lukewarm and Lovin' It

Lukewarm. No, it's not a reference to someone named Luke. It comes from a Middle English word -- "leuk" or "lewk" -- meaning "tepid". Okay, so there we have it. The term answers the question, "How warm is it?" "Tepid." Of course, it used to primarily refer to food or liquid, but it wasn't long before it was expanded to include the unenthusiastic person. "How hot are you on this subject?" "Eh ... tepid."

I don't think anyone thinks it's a good thing. I know Jesus doesn't. He told the church at Laodicea,
I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot; I wish that you were cold or hot. So because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of My mouth. (Rev 3:15-16)
And, no, "spit you out of My mouth" isn't a good thing. In fact, the word there is literally "vomit".

So, why does it seem like the majority of Christians are quite happy with lukewarm?

Come on. Let's be honest. How many of us are "on fire" for Christ? Isn't it true that we tend to more closely fit the lukewarm description of Laodicea than anything described as "hot"?
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. (Rev 3:17-18)
Look, we come from a comfortable society. We have a lot. We are largely prosperous. For the most part, we're doing fine. Just like Laodicea. Which means, if we're a lot like them, we don't recognize the reality of our wretched, pitiable, poor, blind, naked condition. Satiated with worldly comfort, we're fine ... but we're not. Our standard of measurement is off.

It's actually a dangerous place to be. In fact, Jesus would prefer "cold" to lukewarm (Rev 3:15). But we're fine, thanks. We're happy with lukewarm.

It's a simple instruction, really.
Those whom I love, I reprove and discipline, so be zealous and repent. (Rev 3:19)
Be zealous. Repent. He'll do the rest. Oh, it won't be pleasant. He reproves and disciplines. But He does it out of love. We need to pursue Him for the genuine "gold", "white garments", and "salve", because what we have is mostly counterfeit. But if we're actually among His own, we should be happy to embrace the pain, should be diligent to repent, should be eager to be zealous.

Lukewarm and lovin' it? It describes most of us at one time or another, but it's a dangerous place to be. Be zealous and repent.

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