Read Revelation 3:14-22
14 “Write this letter to the angel of the church in Laodicea. This is the message from the one who is the Amen—the faithful and true witness, the beginning of God’s new creation:
15 “I know all the things you do, that you are neither hot nor cold. I wish that you were one or the other! 16 But since you are like lukewarm water, neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of my mouth! 17 You say, ‘I am rich. I have everything I want. I don’t need a thing!’ And you don’t realize that you are wretched and miserable and poor and blind and naked. 18 So I advise you to buy gold from me—gold that has been purified by fire. Then you will be rich. Also buy white garments from me so you will not be shamed by your nakedness, and ointment for your eyes so you will be able to see. 19 I correct and discipline everyone I love. So be diligent and turn from your indifference.
20 “Look! I stand at the door and knock. If you hear my voice and open the door, I will come in, and we will share a meal together as friends. 21 Those who are victorious will sit with me on my throne, just as I was victorious and sat with my Father on his throne.
22 “Anyone with ears to hear must listen to the Spirit and understand what he is saying to the churches.” (NLT)
The church at Laodicea wasn’t much good to anyone. It was lukewarm. Near Laodicea were hot springs whose waters provided healing. Also near Laodicea were the cool, refreshing waters of the Mediterranean. Each sort of water could do good to people, whereas the Laodiceans were stuck in a situation of lethargic ‘moderation’.
They were materially prosperous, and this seems to have caused complacency. Churches which pat themselves on the back are in danger. Churches which measure their worth by money or technology or staff or reputation are likewise in danger. They need help, and the help doesn’t come from the latest church-growth guru or whiz-bang conference, but from God himself.
He describes himself as knocking on the door seeking entrance into this church which perhaps was getting by without too much of his help. It was growing fat and lazy and didn’t figure it needed the supernatural help of God.
It is interesting that this text about knocking on the door is so often used to urge those not yet Christians to let God into their lives. In fact, it is an invitation for any of us who have become lukewarm to let God come in and help us do some real good in life rather than settle for second-best complacency.