(originally posted 11/12/2015 at littlegirlriseup.blogspot.com)
I want to share a few of the prophetic words God has given me to share with His church during the new women’s Bible study we will begin on December 1st. The study is based on the prayer methods and lessons learned in the movie, “War Room.” If you would like to be a part of this study you can go to Rockview Women’s Ministry on Facebook and “like” our page to get more information, receive updates or to follow along by video.
The study begins by encouraging an honest evaluation of ourselves. For the study to bear the maximum amount of fruit in a person’s life, they must first build a solid foundation upon which to set it. Otherwise, everything we discuss and learn will have nothing to take root in. When instruction and understanding have no root, they wither away. Lives are not changed and no spiritual growth is maintained. So, the foundation upon which this study will be set upon is an honest evaluation of where we are with God– individually and collectively– as a church.
One of the metaphors the study gives for our evaluation is from Revelation Chapter 3, which is Jesus’ Letter to the Laodicean Church. During my prayer time asking for God’s guidance, leading and counsel as to how to present this lesson, He gave me three specific words I feel compelled to share. Those words are:
- The Church is lukewarm because “people are not coming to the cross broken and in desperate need of a Savior, longing to be free from the tyranny of sin in their lives.”
-the understanding I was given was that more people come to the cross because they want God to do things for them, instead of coming to the cross because they are genuinely sorrowful over their sins, with a genuine desire to turn away from them
-they come to the cross to be prosperous or happy instead of forgiven
-they come to the cross with the mindset that God owes them, instead of them owing God
-they come to the cross for forgiveness, but not in repentance
- The Church is lukewarm because “they want changed circumstances instead of changed lives.”
-again, people are coming to church or claiming Jesus Christ because of what they think God will give them or do for them
-people want the circumstances of their lives changed, they want bigger, better, more comfort, less worry, but they don’t want to change themselves
- The Church is lukewarm because there is a gross lack of discernment, “you seek teachers who will empower you, rather than convict you.”
-preachers who promise empowerment through Christ are teaching people to substitute themselves in the place where Christ should be
-we have authority in Christ, but that should not be our focus, nor the impetus behind our desire for salvation or service
-our authority in Christ is a part of salvation, not a reason for salvation
-we are not in control, Christ is
One of the admonishments Jesus gives to the lukewarm Laodicean Church is, “Those whom I love, I reprove and discipline; therefore be zealous and repent.” (Rev 3:19). The problem in the church today is that we are far more zealous for ourselves than for God, His word and His righteousness. Our lives are consumed with our own pursuits, we are all about our own business and little to none about God’s. Our attention is saturated with our own problems or desires and wants. And our desires and wants usually only serve to bring about more problems. To our shame, we are not zealous about our Father’s business. To our shame, the larger portion of those who claim to be part of God’s church are not even aware of their great need for repentance. That is why Jesus tells the Laodiceans, “So, because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of my mouth. For you say, ‘I am rich, I have prospered, and I need nothing’, not realizing that you are wretched, pitiable, poor, blind, and naked.” (Rev 3:17,18).
If anything could be used to describe the spiritual condition of the larger portion of God’s church today, “wretched, pitiable, poor, blind and naked” would most certainly be the shoe that fits.