We are in the last ERA of God’s church during this age. Revelation tells us that a lack of Zeal would be a major characteristic of the people of this age of the church.
Rev 3:16 So, because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of my mouth.
One day, Jesus told his disciples about the future destruction of the temple in Jerusalem, after which they came to him privately to ask about what he had said. Instead of answering their questions about the temple, his future coming, and the end of the age of human rule on earth, he began to tell them about what would happen after his death. Later in this same conversation with his disciples, he said:
“Many false prophets will arise, and will mislead many. And because lawlessness shall have been multiplied, the godly love [agape] of many will grow cold. But the one that endures to the end, that one will be saved” (Matt.24:11-13 KJV Para.).
The many whose godly love will grow cold refers to some of the Father’s elect who will either neglect their promise to diligently practice a righteous life or for various reasons decide living righteously is not worth the effort. See 1.Tim.4:1; Rev.3:14-16.
1Ti 4:1 Now the Spirit expressly says that in later times some will depart from the faith by devoting themselves to deceitful spirits and teachings of demons,
Rev 3:14 “And to the angel of the church in Laodicea write: ‘The words of the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of God’s creation. Rev 3:15 “‘I know your works: you are neither cold nor hot. Would that you were either cold or hot! Rev 3:16 So, because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of my mouth.
After praising the elect at Ephesus for much of their effort to live righteously, Jesus said the following:
“Nevertheless I have somewhat against you, because you have left your first love [agape]. Remember therefore from where you are fallen, and repent, and do the first works; or else I will come to you quickly, and will remove your lamp-stand out of its place, except
you repent” (Rev.2:4-5 KJV Para.).
The English word first in verse 4 is translated from the Greek word protos, which means foremost (in time, place, order or importance). It is logical to assume that this first love (agape) is the godly love that each of the elect is bestowed when they become one of the Father’s earthly children. It is also logical that the expression of this godly love for the Father, Christ, the elect, and other people is what has grown cold.
Notice what else is revealed about the Laodicean ERA:
Rev 3:17 For you say, I am rich, I have prospered, and I need nothing, not realizing that you are wretched, pitiable, poor, blind, and naked.
Rev 3:18 I counsel you to buy from me gold refined by fire, so that you may be rich, and white garments so that you may clothe yourself and the shame of your nakedness may not be seen, and salve to anoint your eyes, so that you may see.
If you think that you are so rich that you have need of nothing, then you are blind and cannot see not only your own needs but especially the needs of others. They are no longer showing love and concern for the brethren or their neighbors, this lukewarm self-satisfied attitude is slowly causing their light to dim and possibly go out. Christ warned the Ephesus ERA to get back to that first love, or HE would remove their lampstand. Our inaction or lacadasical action can cause us to lose God’s Holy Spirit.
If we allow the gift of godly love to diminish in us, our spiritual lamp which lights our path of righteousness will be extinguished, leaving us in spiritual darkness. If you are, truly, interested in making it into the Kingdom of God as part of the first fruits of God’s harvest then we must begin to, once again, cultivate that Love that was imparted to us through the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.
Remember, the apostle Paul said that all authorizations of spiritual power and ability are given for the purpose of performing the collective work of the church and the benefit, edification, and enrichment of the Sovereign Father’s elect who are being prepared to serve all of humanity through his family and government.
Eph 4:7 But unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ.
Eph 4:8 Wherefore he saith, When he ascended up on high, he led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men.
Eph 4:9 (Now that he ascended, what is it but that he also descended first into the lower parts of the earth?
Eph 4:10 He that descended is the same also that ascended up far above all heavens, that he might fill all things.)
Eph 4:11 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;
Eph 4:12 For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:
Eph 4:13 Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ:
Eph 4:14 That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;
Eph 4:15 But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ:
Eph 4:16 From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love.
Godly love [agape] is mentioned over 100 times in the New Testament and is mostly mentioned as an identifying characteristic of God the Father, Christ, and the elect. The apostle Paul alone mentions godly love more than 70 times. For godly love to be mentioned this many times points to the importance of this godly characteristic.
In the apostle Paul’s letter to the elect at Corinth, he stressed the importance of godly love as something which must be in evidence if we are to use the gifts of the spirit to benefit our spiritual brothers and sisters and to do the work of the church. Therefore, it is logical that if you are seeking additional gifts of the spirit, you must have and be exercising godly love in your life.
According to Christ, Paul, and other apostles, the spiritual attribute which is to be most evidenced and increased in our lives is godly love.
If you want to be a part of the first fruits, it would be wise to take time to do a serious self-evaluation and ask yourself if that gift of LOVE, imparted to you at Baptism and the laying on of hands is still there. Because it is evident that the exercise of godly love is necessary to please the Father and show ourselves as “profitable servants”, it would also be wise to prayerfully search the scriptures to understand godly love and its application as we wait for the Lord’s appearance.