I don’t know about you but for me if I were to be served a dish that is only slightly warm when its supposed to be piping hot, and vise versa, a cold dish that isn’t served as chilled as it should be it is not very appetizing. Think about it. You get to your favorite restaurant, looking forward to a nice hot piece of meat, steak or a burger, cooked to order with all the fix-ins, whatever those are to you. And the waiter goes around the table to get everyone’s order and comes to you last. You order a steak and choose a baked potato as one side and coleslaw as the other.
Then the food is prepared the waiter brings it to your table and your taste buds are watering as you take in and enjoy the smells. Imagine that you’ve been looking forward to this night all week. You take your first bite expecting to your taste buds to be tantalized but disappointment sets in because neither of your hot dishes are very hot, nor is your coleslaw very cold. Both are lukewarm. The steak has cooled and is sort of tough and rubbery. The potato is slightly hardened because it cooled. And the coleslaw is not fresh, cold and crisp. It’s at room temperature. Your stomach turns and you push the plate away.
This is what I visualize as a big let down. I like meat. May it be a steak dinner or a good burger I would choose either any day over just salad. I like meat cooked to perfection and served piping hot. I, or anyone else for that matter, is not going to want to pay a decent amount for just a mediocre meal. And I most certainly would be hesitant to visit that restaurant that served my food as just described.
I think this is what John meant when he penned Revelation 3:16, So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth (KJV). The word ‘lukewarm’ in the original Greek is chliaros. Vine’s Expository Dictionary describes this word to mean: a metaphor of the condition of the soul wretchedly fluctuating between a torpor and a fervour of love. Basically, those two words describe a love that is inactive, and lazy verses a love that is passionate. This describes how God feels about people that are not fully committed to Him. Not sold out in their relationship with Him. They don’t completely pursue God or do those things to build up their faith in Him. They spend more time pursuing fleeting things, things the world says we should be chasing. Acquiring more to “quench our thirst”. In actuality, it makes us thirstier and thus the cycle goes as we chase after things that don’t last. Those that are lukewarm don’t order their day around God. They order God around their day. They’ve totally missed it.
Everyone has seasons in their relationship with Christ. Sometimes we are hotter for God then other times. But trials and testing come our way and they have a tendency to either draw us closer to God or push us further from Him. Sometimes I feel like in my own life, my heart can become callused due to my own complacency. I put something before God in my heart while playing this game called life. It has a tendency to cool my love for Him. Some believers I think either get a hold of this truth right away or just miss it and it derails them from ever truly maturing in their faith. When we ask Jesus to come live in our hearts, because we accept His payment for our sin on the cross, we are giving Him permission to be the Lord of our lives. A lot of believers miss this. They accept the gift of eternal security but walk right passed anything deeper. They become lukewarm. Half in. Half out. This displeases God greatly. It disgusts Him. The verse in Revelation says it makes Him want to vomit.
But oh what a joy to be leaning on, be confident in and trusting in the Lord with all your heart. To be hanging on His every Word. Letting it be your guiding light. Your only hope. It is there and only there we can find peace. Peace in the midst of the struggles and fires that storm our pathway in life. Its our light at the end of the tunnel. If only we could be convinced of how real God is and how He really yearns to speak directly to you through His Word.
My challenge for you as you finish reading this blog is to give God His time everyday. Remember we reap only what we sow. We are all busy. But we cannot let busyness get in the way of our pursuit of the Lord. We all have the same number of hours in a day to disperse however we may. What things do you need to cut out of your life to give Him that precious time? You may very well overcome unexpected obstacles that come your way once you do. To have the strength to face the day. I guarantee you will not be disappointed.
Oh, the joys of those who do not follow the advice of the wicked,
or stand around with sinners, or join in with mockers. But they delight in the law of the LORD, meditating on it day and night. They are like trees planted along the riverbank,bearing fruit each season. Their leaves never wither, and they prosper in all they do (Psalm 1:1-2, NLT).
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