First and foremost, I bid you all a very Happy Thanksgiving!
It’s Thanksgiving Day, and I’m likely beginning my day with a delicious cup of coffee. Now, there’s something to be thankful for—COFFEE! I am exceedingly thankful for coffee. I believe it to be the most enjoyable drink on the earth. And it’s a drink to be had in any season. You can drink it all year round.
For the cold months, there are a million ways to have it hot. There’s nothing better than sipping your favorite tasty latte to warm you from head to toe. Yet, even when the temperature outside rises too high, a well-made cold brew is absolutely appropriate, and quite refreshing.
Obviously, I really, really like coffee. Coffee is good.
Now, it’s a chilly day in November, and I’ve made ready a perfect cup of coffee in my favorite mug. I take a sip—ah! Wonderful! But, I’ve just remembered the load of laundry I put in the washer several hours ago. I leave my coffee on the counter in order to attend to my wet, and hopefully, not soured clothes.
Upon returning to my coffee, I finally take a seat in my comfiest chair, and take another sip… Only to spit it back into my cup with a grimace of utter disappointment!!!
What has happened to my drink?!
It’s still coffee. It’s the same liquid substance that was in my cup before I left to handle my laundry. But now, it’s useless coffee. It’s not hot. It’s not cold. It’s just nasty and will bring me no pleasure to drink it. I have to pour it out. Ugh! Down the drain…
This scenario is precisely what I think of when I read about the church of Laodicea in the book of Revelation. Jesus is talking to churches—that is, believers, Christian peoples. He says:
Often, I’ve heard this passage of scripture preached in reference to believers and non-believers, as if to say each is represented as hot and cold respectively. But, I can’t believe that Jesus means He’d prefer someone be surely destined for heaven or hell than to be in the middle, perhaps trying to figure it out or asking questions. I don’t think He’d ever say that. In fact, I believe He said that it was His will for all come to the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ.
No, Jesus wasn’t calling believers hot, and non-believers cold. Jesus was talking to the church of Laodicea. His audience was all believers. It would not make sense for Him to tell a group of all "hot" people that they’re not hot…or cold…but all lukewarm. They were all believers. They were all coffee. They were just lukewarm coffee. Ew.
What’s the point in all this? Why is lukewarm no good for the believer?
Because lukewarm is useless. It’s no good for anybody. After He called out believers of Laodicea as lukewarm, Jesus continued to explain exactly how they had lost their usefulness.
The believers in Laodicea had decided that they already had everything they needed, and whether they realized it or not, they had subsequently decided that they no longer needed Jesus or anybody else.
Jesus also talked about the believers’ usefulness in His famous Sermon on the Mount.
These believers stopped seeking. They stopped hearing.
And when believers stop hearing, they stop doing.
And when believers stop doing, they stop growing.
And when believers stop growing, they stagnate.
And when believers stagnate, they become useless.
They lose their saltiness. Their light stops shining. The atrophy sets in. And the rest of the body suffers.
Paul often compared the body of Christ to the human body. He said in Ephesians that a body grows to full maturity when all the parts work together, each doing their part, and helping one another. He said in Corinthians that when one part suffers, the whole body suffers, and when one member is honored, the whole body shares in the enjoyment. In Colossians, he says that we are called to live under the rule of God’s peace in one body — Christ’s.
Let us always remember that we need Jesus; that we need the body of Christ, for we all benefit from each other.
Let us be useful Christians.
Let’s be hot and soothing.
Let’s be cool and refreshing.
But let us never become lukewarm and good for nothing. (Tweet This)
We are believers with ears to hear what the Spirit says to His church.
About the Author:
Jade Matzinger is both a writer and full-time transcriptionist at KH Ministries in Tulsa, OK. She enjoys the high notes of millennial culture, savoring coffee, art, and nature whenever she can. She likes to share deep, thought-provoking ideas through word, music, and other artistic mediums. Occasionally, you'll find her "nerding" out over documentaries, local history, and self-guided tours of vintage architecture. Though not much of a fan for cable or Netflix, she does love a good read and her pet bunny, "Clive." Most cherished are her friends, Dave (her boyfriend), her local church...and Jesus, her Best Friend Forever.