I know your deeds. You have a name, reputation that you are alive, but in reality you are dead. Wake up, and strengthen and reaffirm what remains of your faithful commitment to Me, which is about to die. For I have not found any of your deeds completed in the sight of My God or meeting His requirements.
So remember and take to heart the lessons you have received and heard. Keep and obey them. Repent. Change your sinful way of thinking. Demonstrate your repentance with new behavior that proves a conscious decision to turn away from sin. So then, if you do not wake up. I will come like a thief, and you will not know at what hour I will come to you.
But you still have a few people in Sardis who have not soiled their clothes. That is, contaminated their character and personal integrity with sin. They will walk with Me dressed in white because they are worthy, righteous.
He who overcomes the world through believing that Jesus is the Son of God will accordingly be dressed in white clothing. I will never blot out his name from the Book of Life, and I will confess and openly acknowledge his name before My Father and before His angels saying that he is one of Mine. Revelation 3:1-5
Sardis was once part of the ancient Persian kingdom of Lydia. Liberated by Alexander the Great in 340 BC. It became an important Greek city. Its chief deity was Artemis, the goddess of the hunt, wilderness and fertility.
Worship of celestial beings impacted every aspect of community life in Sardis. Besides a plethora of pagan temples, it had the largest synagogue outside of Palestine. Continually exposing the congregants of the Church of Sardis to paradigms and behaviors that contradicted the teachings of Jesus and the Gospel.
The lack of religious persecution suggests the Church of Sardis had fully and silently compromised Christ’s truth so as to exist peacefully with the pagan society that was Sardis. In ignoring all who delight in pursuing righteousness and are determined to live godly lives in Christ Jesus will be hunted and persecuted because of their faith. 2 Timothy 3:12 They chose to hold to an outward form of godliness— religion. In the process nullifying the Gospel’s power in their lives because their claim of faith was fictitious. This community of the living dead needed Papa’s power to bring them back to life.
It’s difficult to rock the boat, and challenge ungodly paradigms, but Jesus made it clear.
This is serious business we’re involved in. My mission is to send a purging fire on the earth! In fact, I can hardly wait to see the smoke rising. I have a kind of baptism to go through, and I can’t relax until My mission is accomplished!
Do you think I’ve come with a nice little message of peace? No way. Believe Me. My message will divide. It will divide a household of five into three against two or two against three. It will divide father against son and son against father, mother against daughter and daughter against mother, mother-in-law against daughter-in-law and daughter-in-law against mother-in-law. Luke 12:49-52
Rocking the boat is frowned upon by many Christians.
Questioning religious leadership is taboo.
Confronting sin among fellow believers is none of your business.
Challenging paradigms which are opinions and generalizations is spiritual suicide.
John the Baptist refused to remain silent concerning religious hypocrisy. So when he realized that Pharisees and Sadducees were attending baptismal experiences because it was becoming popular. He exploded.
IIf you think that simply hopping in the Jordan will cleanse you, then you are sorely mistaken. Your life must bear the fruits of turning toward righteousness. Nor are you correct if you think that being descended from Abraham is enough to make you holy and right with God. Yes, the children of Abraham are God’s chosen children, but God can adopt as daughters and sons anyone He likes— He can turn these stones into sons if He likes. Matthew 3:8-9
John’s refusal to not rock the boat did not endear him to those in authority.
John the Baptist did attract the attention of those searching for truth. Individuals who were spiritually starving.
Like the people in the days of John the Baptist, many in the Church today are starving because the truth of Jesus is not being taught. Truth that…
Demands holiness and repentance— a life of spiritual excellence regardless the personal cost.
Boldly confronting religious paradigms that are more concerned with the observance of rules and traditions than spiritual transformation.
Is non-negotiable. All information, experiences, relationships and opportunities are to be processed through the filter of Papa’s moral absolutes.
Beloved, disciples of Christ can’t collaborate with evil. Believing loyalty in Jesus and the Gospel must be their creed. They can never bequeath their loyalty to any other god. Disciples need to believe boldly so that it moves them and affects the way they think and behave.
We are at war with evil’s lies and deception. Papa’s truth must be both our weapon and shield.
The word of God, you see is alive and moving, sharper than a double-edged sword. Piercing the divide between soul and spirit, joints and marrow. Able to judge the thoughts and will of the heart. No creature can hide from God. God sees all. Everyone and everything is exposed. Opened for His inspection, and He’s the One we will have to explain ourselves to. Hebrews 4:12-13
The living dead must be resuscitated, brought back to spiritual life. Transformed into the image of Christ so they are worthy to wear the white robes of the redeemed.
This is only possible if you study and do your best to present yourself to God approved. A workman tested by trial who has no reason to be ashamed, accurately handling and skillfully teaching the word of truth. Avoid all irreverent babble and godless chatter with its profane, empty words. For it will lead to further ungodliness, and their teaching will spread like gangrene.
The firm foundation of God which He has laid stands sure and unshaken despite attacks, bearing this seal. “The Lord knows those who are His,” and, “Let everyone who names the name of the Lord stand apart from wickedness and withdraw from wrongdoing.”.2 Timothy 2 15-16 and 19
To be worthy to receive a white robe, both one’s spiritual and temporal life must be one of…
Vitality, not stagnation.
Light, not darkness.
Holiness, not evil.
Joy, not sorrow.
This is only possible if one is made spiritually pure by the blood of Jesus. It’s not our good works by which we are made spiritually pure, only Christ’s crucifixion and resurrection. He alone is the path to eternity with Papa.
In these last days, rocking the boat must become the default mode for Christians. Silence and apathy are no longer an option.
Beloved, be a voice and clear the way through the wilderness for the Lord! Make a straight highway through the wasteland for our God! Fill in the valleys and level the mountains and hills. Straighten the curves and smooth out the rough places. Then the glory of the Lord will be revealed, and all people will see it together. Isaiah 40:3-5