Looking at Laodiceanism of Rev. 3


Our King give each of the seven churches counsel and warnings but the last, the seventh, he gave a stern warning. In fact the most severe warning of the churches. Our study this week will look at the meaning of Laodicea as mentioned in Rev. 3:14-22, and why we as Seventh-day Adventists should take this very seriously, lest we be “vomited out” by the Lord.

“SEVEN QUESTIONS UNDER CONSIDERATION

  1. Who is Laodicea?
  2. Whom does the angel represent?
  3. What is meant by being wretched and
    miserable and poor and blind and naked?
  4. What is it to be “lukewarm”?
  5. Why does God prefer one either cold
    or hot rather than lukewarm?
  6. What is the eyesalve?
  7. Should Laodicea fail to repent, how
    would her shame be uncovered?

IN NEED OF NOTHING?

The right answers to these seven important questions to every truth-seeking Christian today will, if understood and heeded, rescue each from the shameful and dangerous Laodicean condition, and safeguard his salvation. This it will do ever so soon as he takes to heart

THE FACTS ON THESE SEVEN QUESTIONS.

The Revelation, chapters 2 and 3, describes the condition of each of the seven churches, the last of which is the Laodicean. These churches, admittedly, portray the Christian church in seven different periods; the seventh, Laodicea, depicting her in the period just before the “harvest,” the last in which the “wheat and tares” are commingled, and the one in which she is to experience the separation of the bad from among the good (Matt. 13:30, 47-49).

Since in her every section, the church must be true to her name (it alone being her identification), we shall therefore consider

THE NAME, LAODICEA.

Being compounded of the Greek words “lao” and “deci,” the one meaning “people,” also “speak,” the other meaning “judgment,” the two together meaning people proclaiming judgment, the name Laodicea, therefore, identifies a church proclaiming the judgment hour (Dan. 7:9, 10; Rev. 14:6, 7).

As the S.D.A. church is the only one to proclaim judgment, and as each of the seven messages is addressed to the angel of the respective churches, the message to Laodicea is accordingly

ADDRESSED TO THE S.D.A. ANGEL.

In The Revelation, chapter 1, the churches are symbolized by seven candlesticks, and the angels of the churches, by the seven stars (Rev. 1:20).

Being the attendants of the candlesticks (churches), the angels are thus seen to be the ministry, whose responsibility is to have the lamps trimmed, filled with oil, and burning brightly, so that the church may give light to all about her.

Hence as the Laodicean angel, him to whom the condemnatory message is sent, is symbolical of the ministry in Laodicea, he should consequently be the more anxious to discover where the trouble lies, for he is, says the Lord,

WRETCHED, MISERABLE, POOR,
BLIND, AND NAKED.

With a ministry wretched, miserable, poor, blind, and naked, what church (candlestick) could possibly stay lighted? And with her light thus gone out or but flickering dimly, how could she lighten the world as God has set her to do? Through the eyes of the True Witness, therefore, the tragedy of Laodicea is starkly seen—“sleeping preachers preaching to a sleeping people” (Testimonies, Vol. 2, p. 337), while a sin-benighted world plunges on hell-bent in its darkness! O what a piteous plight! And yet it is so utterly overlooked!

With both ministry and laity in such a pitiful state of darkness, it is clear to be seen that though the Laodicean church is the last in the order of the seven, God cannot lighten the world and prepare His people for the Kingdom with her when she is in darkness and unprepared herself. Hence the necessity of a new order, a new ministry, as predicted in Testimonies, Vol. 5, p. 80, and in Zephaniah 3:11, 12.

Then it will come to pass that “only those who have withstood and overcome temptation in the strength of the Mighty One will be permitted to act a part in proclaiming this message when it shall have swelled into the Loud Cry.”—Review and Herald, Nov. 19, 1908.

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In the light of these facts, the prophetic message to the angel of the Laodiceans must obviously be brought and proclaimed by someone other than the angel himself. But this, of course, is the very thing that neither the ministry nor the laity expect or wish to happen. For the sake of the faithful, nevertheless, it is happening.

So since God’s Word says that the ministry of the Laodicean church is wretched, miserable, poor, blind, and naked, and that neither they nor the laity are aware of the fact, it lends heavy underscoring to the statements: “Sleeping preachers preaching to a sleeping people!” (Testimonies, Vol. 2, p. 337); and “the message of the True Witness finds the people of God in a sad deception, yet honest in that deception.”—Testimonies, Vol. 3, p. 253.

Although they are in this horrible predicament, one which should make them tremble and fear, and give anything to get out of, yet they continue

LUKEWARM—NEITHER COLD NOR HOT.

Deceived and about to lose their lives, though as ignorant of their peril as a mouse before the trap snaps shut, they are satisfied (lukewarm) in the devil’s trap, as they make toward its delectable bait—a false hope of enjoying the feast in Paradise!

When one finds himself in a climate which is neither cold nor hot, but lukewarm, a temperature desired and sought by all, there he basks as a pauper become a prince! So it is with the Laodiceans, as represented in prophecy, though their supposed palace is nothing but a death trap!

To rescue one from such a “terrible deception” is a task which calls for the utmost wisdom not only because the victim is blindly inured to the perilous condition he is in, while his rescuers are endeavoring to save him from perishing, but also because he considers them as his enemies, false prophets, instead of as his friends and deliverers, messengers from God!

From the life line, the saving message, which they pleadingly hold forth to him, he recoils. And consequently by his attitude against them, he shouts: Away, away, I am rich and increased with goods: I have need of nothing; I have all the truth. “I am satisfied with my position. I have set my stakes, and I will not be moved away from my position, whatever may come.”—Testimonies on SabbathSchool Work, p. 65.

In protesting that they are not wretched (not unhappy), not miserable (not troubled), not poor (not in need of truth), not blind (not benighted or illiterate), not naked (not without the righteousness of Christ), the Laodiceans are contradicting the True Witness, rejecting His counsel, and discrediting His remedy—

THE EYESALVE.

As only the “salve” (truth) will heal them from their deadly Laodicean malady, hence if they fail to avail themselves of the cure (to search for truth as for hidden treasure) and to apply it (to repent), they will be spued out. O, Brother, Sister, will you not call for the “salve”? or will you continue in your wretchedness, miserableness, poverty, blindness, and nakedness, and thus compel Him to spue you out and to

UNCOVER YOUR SHAME?

So far, my brethren, that your shame might not appear, God has not exposed the sins which you have cherished and kept under cover. No longer, though, will He bear with you. So for your soul’s sake, cease adding sin to sin; repent, and return to the Lord; argue no longer that you have all the Truth, but come have a good feast of It. God will just as gladly accept you and make a feast for you as did the father of the prodigal accept his son and make a feast for him.

Be not like the Jew. But open your heart; cast out its pride, its prejudice, and its self-conceit; let them not deprive you of eternal life at such a late hour as this. If you repeat the mistake of the Jews, your shame and your loss will be much greater than theirs—as much greater as are your light and your opportunities and privileges. Yea, beyond comparison!

So will you not, then, we plead with you, end your long Laodicean sickness and poverty, and no longer imagine that you are

RICH, INCREASED WITH GOODS.

Never do you even so much as intimate that you have all the buildings, all the institutions, all the money, all the workers, all the converts you need! Your only boast is of having no need of truth! This attitude, therefore, God says, is the way in which you are saying, “I am rich and increased with goods, and have need of nothing.” It is the source of your trouble, and the thing which the Lord expects you to confess and to repent of.

The angel’s (the ministry’s) false claim of being rich and increased with goods, and in need of nothing, does not make him a liar, but rather shows him to be a victim of ignorance and delusion. But his thinking that he has and knows all the truth, makes his condition even more perilous than a liar’s, for a liar knows that he is lying. O awake, Brother, Sister, awake! awake!” (7 SC, no.7-12, p.3-4)

 Summary — We as SDA must realize that there is more Truth to learn and obey and indeed a “message” to our church. It is called the Elijah message as prophesied in Malachi 4:5. The “angel” our leaders,  are shown to fail, by not humbling themselves and accepting this message, let us not join in with them!

2 Responses to “Looking at Laodiceanism of Rev. 3”

  1. Wilfred Ondande Says:

    wow what a very clear teaching ,very relevant and helpful in making us know what is needed of us.It has no private interpretation by golden bowl formular onlyThanks a lot for this amazing presentation!BlessingsWilfred

  2. godsloveandlaw Says:

    Amen bro yes this teaching is such a blessing

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