But the Church of Laodicea was not only poor, though rich, it was blind. Or to put it more accurately, “Near-Sighted.” They could see their worldly prosperity, but were “Short-Sighted” as top heavenly things, so the Lord counseled them to annoint their eyes with “Eye-Salve.” Their merchants dealt in ointments and herbs of a high degree of healing virtue, but they possessed no salve that would restore impaired Spiritual Vision, only the Unction of the Holy One could do that.
But the church was not only poor, but blind, it was naked. Their outward garments were doubtless of the finest material and the latest fashionable cut, but not such as should adorn the person of a Child of God. So they were counseled to purchase of Christ “White Raiment” in exchange for “raven black woolen” garments for which the garment makers of Laodicea were famous. Then a most startling revelation was made to the Church of Laodicea, Christ said “Behold, I stand at the door and knock.”
These words are generally quoted as an appeal to sinners, but they are not. They are addressed to a Church, and to a Church in whose midst Christ has once stood, but now found Himself excluded and standing outside knocking for admittance. This is the most startling thing recorded in the New Testament; that it is possible for a church to be outwardly prosperous yet have no Christ in its midst, and be unconscious of the fact. This is a description of a Christless Church.
Excluded from His own nation, for they rejected Him; excluded from the world, for it crucified Him; excluded from His Church, for He stands outside its door knocking for entrance.
How did Christ come to be outside the Church? He had been WITHIN it once and there never would have been a Church. How did He come to leave? It is clear that they had not thrust Him out, for they do not seem to have missed His presence. They continued to worship Him, to sing His praises, and engage in all manner of Christian service, yet He had withdrawn. Why? The reason is summed in one word~ WORLDLINESS. But how is Christ to get back into His Church? Does it require the unanimous vote or invitation of the membership? No, “If any man hear My voice, and open the door, I will come into him, and will sup with Him, and he with Me.” That is the way to revive a lukewarm church is for the individual members to open their hearts and let Christ re-enter, and thus open the door for His reappearance.
A little more next week.