Hot, Cold, or Lukewarm?

Hot Chocolate & Computers

Hot Chocolate & Computers (Photo credit: Martin Cathrae)

I have been so cold this week (though it’s starting to warm up again–crazy weather). Which is kind of ridiculous, considering it was only 61 degrees in my house most of the time. It never does get very cold in the South. Nevertheless, I’m pretty much always cold in the winter. Because of that, all I’ve been thinking of lately is where I can find another blanket, not where I can find inspiration for another blog post. I figured it was about time to write something, though, and I immediately thought of Revelation 3:15-16.

“I know all the things you do, that you are neither hot nor cold. I wish that you were one or the other! But since you are like lukewarm water, neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of my mouth!

This part of Revelation is full of messages to various churches. These few verses are the beginning of a message from God to a church in Laodicea. Note that He’s not being literal. The Laodiceans weren’t hot like you are in the summer or cold like I am right now. No, when the  verse says “hot” and “cold”, it’s talking about our spiritual life.

Have you ever been to a really good Christian concert or conference? When you come home, you feel like you’re on fire for Jesus. That’s the equivalent of being spiritually hot. You feel so excited; you want to share the Gospel with the world, and nothing can stop you! Unfortunately, the next morning you forget how you felt and everything goes back to normal.

And then, of course, there’s the opposite of hot: cold. No spiritual life at all. Basically, the love of God can’t be found in the heart of a spiritually cold person.

But there’s one more thing. God said the Laodiceans were like “lukewarm water”. It’s not hot, but it’s not cold either. It’s somewhere in the middle. It’s like being a Christian but not really caring. Reading your Bible but not really understanding it. Praying because, well, that’s what Christian do, right? Going to church because it’ll make you look good and, after all, it doesn’t take that much time away from the “important” stuff. In reality, you’re a Christian only in name, not through your actions or your relationship with God.

We need to evaluate our spiritual life. Are you hot or cold? Whether or not you’re cold is easy enough to figure out–have you accepted Jesus Christ into your heart and asked Him to forgive you of your sins? But hot can be a little more confusing. Most of us (if any of us) don’t experience that post-conference/concert feel 24/7. But that doesn’t mean we’re lukewarm. If you’re serious about your relationship with God, sharing the Gospel, and growing as a Christian, you’re hot.

Orange Tree

Orange Tree (Photo credit: amycgx)

God doesn’t want us to be lukewarm. We shouldn’t just be Christians and leave it at that. Imagine your spiritual life as a fruit tree. The tree of a spiritually cold person is dead. A believer bears fruit (see the fruit of the Spirit). But a lukewarm person, while alive, doesn’t produce any fruit. And, really, who wants a fruit tree without the fruit?

It’s time to quit straddling the fence. We either are Christians or we aren’t. We’re serious about God, or we don’t care. We want to share His love and the Good News with the world, or we don’t. Which are you?


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