To be lukewarm is to have a condition that will cause God to vomit you out of His mouth. I don’t want to give God the flu, do you? There is only one cure for that: the Fire of God. In the movie War Room, there was a scene when the older woman asked the young woman realtor if she considered her spiritual condition to be hot or cold. She replied “that it was neither, but lukewarm.” The older woman proceeded to bring her a cup of coffee that was disgustingly lukewarm, as an object lesson. The woman almost spit it out of her mouth. That is the condition that most of the church is in today.
We have so many gods, priorities, and distractions in this hour. The Bible makes it plain where our priorities must lie. Luke 14:25-27a says "Now great multitudes went with Him. And He turned and said to them, “If anyone comes to Me and does not hate his father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters, yes, and his own life also, he cannot be My disciple. And whoever does not bear his cross and come after Me cannot be My disciple."
There is only one way to know someone’s temperature for sure, and that is to use a thermometer. I hear people guess at temperatures, especially when it comes to a baby. “I think he’s fine.” “No, I think he has a small temperature.” “No, I think it’s dangerously high.” There is only one way to know for sure. A caregiver or an experienced mother or grandmother may guess pretty close. They can tell by the look in the eye, the lack of color in the skin, and by the touch of the hand.
Those of us called to watch over a flock can also tell when something is wrong by the look on the face, the lack of joy or enthusiasm, the way you walk in dragging, or the lack of worship. However, most who are sick don’t even know it and continue to deny that there is anything wrong. So, we must get out the Bible, ask for the wisdom of the Holy Spirit, and ask spiritual questions (our spiritual thermometer.)
We live in an hour where no one wants to be asked questions or put to some kind of an exacting standard. The famous, “Judge not that you be not judged” slogan seems to be the catch phrase of the hour. However, Jesus, the apostles, and The Holy Spirit ask many questions and make many statements in the Word of God that give us a standard to go by.
I asked some questions as a spiritual thermometer in the last blog. I will ask a few more. Do you love His people and things more than hobbies, family, or interests? Are you willing to watch a football game for four hours, but become irritated if church goes over one hour? When it comes to sports, are you willing to sit 3-1/2 hours in the rain, but get angry if church goes longer than an hour? Are you anxious to come to church & want to be the last to leave? Are you anticipating how God is going to speak to you before the service begins? Do you leave changed or bored? Is it easy for you to cop an attitude toward things in church or fellow Christians, and yet put up with anyone at work? Do you go to work, movies, fellowship with friends, participate in your favorite hobby, or go out to dinner when you have a virus, cold, or flu, but use the excuse of having that same cold to miss church? Will you starve yourself and work out to make your physical goals but refuse to fast one day or attend prayer meetings that will change your family and nation? Will you spend hours texting, reading facebook, answering emails, but not pick up your Bible, except in church? Will you spend hours planning camping trips, vacations, weekend excursions, tupperware and other kinds of social parties, but not volunteer with a spirit of excellence for the kingdom? How often will you leave your sleep to answer the Lord who is asking you to come away with Him? Will you sacrifice some fun time to save our nation from it’s perilous down-slide? Will you speak up and tell the truth, when it is not politically correct to most? What if your faith cost you prison time or worse? How much time do you spend witnessing for The Lord as opposed to talking about other things? Does the world love you or hate you? If you were accused of being a Christian, and it was brought to court, is there enough evidence to convict you? Does God hear excuses from you? How desperate are we for His presence? Is God and His church first or last place in your life? When it comes to finances, how much do we spend on Him in comparison with ourselves? How much did you spend on others for Christmas and how much for God and His kingdom?
Here is one standard. We will look at more in the blogs to come. Matt. 6:19-34 19 "Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: 20 But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: 21 For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also”. All we have to do in this western world is follow our check ledger and we will find our heart. If you look through it and see shoes, clothes, shoes, clothes, hair, shoes, clothes and then one little giving entry, you know that your heart is in your looks. If you see giving, giving, giving, clothes, giving, giving, giving, shoes, giving, giving, giving, hair, you know that your heart is in your Lord and giving to His works and His people. Before the men give a hearty amen, I will give an example for them. Their entries make look like this; hunting equipment, boat, gun, four-wheelers, snow machines, fishing equipment, tools, giving. Then their heart is in their hobbies. However when it looks like this; giving, giving, giving, giving, gun, giving, giving, giving, boat, it has switched to kingdom giving. When you find your treasure, you will find your desires and what you live for. When we become eternally minded, it will be about laying up treasure in heaven, not on this earth.
Dr. Debbie Rich Rester