Let’s begin by reading Revelation 3:14-16, “And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God; I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot. So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth.”  In Revelation chapters 2-3, the Apostle John writes to “the seven churches which are in Asia.”  The letter to the church of Laodicea is the last of the seven addresses.

In each of the addresses, the Lord presents Himself to each church in a different, yet appropriate characteristic.  In this address, the Lord calls Himself, “the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God.”  As the ‘Amen’ the Lord is the embodiment of all that is faithful and true.  He is the One who guarantees and fulfills all the promises of God.  He is the One who launched all creation as we read in Colossians 1:16, “For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him.”  It is in the exhibition of these characteristics that the Lord speaks to the church of Laodicea.

Laodicea means ‘the rights of the people.’  This was a situation where all the people insisted on having their own ways.  They insisted on ‘their rights’ as if they were entitled to certain benefits.  Rather than insisting on the rights of the sovereign God to rule over His people, these people were more concerned about their freedom to do whatsoever they pleased.

Obviously, the Lord was very aware of the incredibly low spiritual state of this church.  He tells them in verse 15, “I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot.”  Verse 16 tells us these people were “lukewarm.”  Hot water is good for taking a bath or making a hot cup of coffee.  Cold water is good for a refreshing drink of water or for swimming on a hot day.  However, lukewarm water is good for nothing.  These words were used to describe the spiritual condition of these people.  How are we to understand these words?  These words describe a people who were spiritual apathetic.  They were indifferent towards the Lord.  Doesn’t that sound like the characteristic of our times?  Look around, people today just don’t care.  You want to worship Allah?  Sure, I don’t mind.  You want to live in an adulterous relationship.  Ok, who am I to judge you?  You want to live the life of a homosexual?  Just as long as you don’t flaunt it in front of me, I don’t care.  We are living in a time when professing Christians don’t stand for or against the Lord.

Because of this state of being lukewarm, or apathetic, the Lord tells them, “I will spue thee out of my mouth.”  Young’s Literal Translation puts it like this, “I am about to vomit thee out of my mouth.”  This sad, sad state of apathy sickened the Lord to the point that He was about to vomit.  I encourage you to read the addresses to all the seven churches in Revelation 2-3.  There were many atrocities the Lord approached them about.  There were things happening and tolerated that greatly displeased the Lord.  Yet, it was this apathy that sickened the Lord so greatly.

The Lord had said in verse 15, “I would thou wert cold or hot.”  It’s not that the Lord wants us to be cold towards Himself, but He surely does not want us to try to give the appearance of something that we are not.  These words are just as applicable to us today as when John wrote them to the church of Laodicea.

In Romans 12:11 the Lord tells us to be, “in the spirit fervent; the Lord serving.”  Dear fellow believer let us all be fervent, or hot, for the Lord.  Let’s not make the Lord sick because of our apathy.  (186.3)