Jesus gives prophetic messages to three additional churches.
To the church in Sardis, Jesus offers a strong rebuke. He calls them "dead" and warns them to recall their initial response to the Gospel and repent. However, He also commends those few who have not defiled themselves. The Lord also commends the church in Philadelphia for having kept His command to persevere. Because of that, He will keep them from the hour of trial that will come upon the whole world. Perhaps the most frightening message goes to the church at Laodicea. Because their works are "neither cold nor hot" but lukewarm, Jesus says He will spew them out of His mouth. Their wealth has made them complacent and Jesus urges them to repent.
Thank the Lord that He cares enough not to let us drift and praise Him for His correction:
The Lord is righteous in all His ways,
Gracious in all His works.
The Lord is near to all who call upon Him,
To all who call upon Him in truth.
He will fulfill the desire of those who fear Him;
He also will hear their cry and save them. . . .
My mouth shall speak the praise of the Lord,
And all flesh shall bless His holy name
Forever and ever (Psalm 145:17-19, 21).
Pause for praise and thanksgiving.
Now pray this confession to the Lord as you seek to keep your life free from sin:
I will meditate on Your precepts.
Let those who fear You turn to me,
Those who know Your testimonies.
Let my heart be blameless regarding Your statutes,
That I may not be ashamed (Psalm 119:78-80).
Confess any sins that the Holy Spirit brings to your mind, and pray this affirmation to the Lord:
Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever (Hebrews 13:8).
As you make your requests known to the Lord, include:
love for others,
missionaries in New Zealand, Australia, and the Pacific islands,
your activities for the day.
Finally, offer this prayer to the Lord:
To Him who is able to establish you according to my gospel and the preaching of Jesus Christ . . . to God, alone wise, be glory through Jesus Christ forever. Amen.
(Romans 16:25, 27)