I think by now that most in God’s church realize that we are in the Laodicean ERA of the church regardless of our individual spiritual motivation. Sure we can have a Philadelphian mindset even though we are going through the Laodicean time phase of the Church, and it’s important that we hold on to that mindset.
But what I am thinking about today is why the church leadership today views what Christ is doing today differently than it viewed what He was doing in Philadelphia?
In Philadelphia, we came to see that Christ Himself was doing a work during that physical time frame(ERA) of the church. He was opening a door that no man could shut;
(Rev 3:8) I know thy works: behold, I have set before thee an open door, and no man can shut it: for thou hast a little strength, and hast kept my word, and hast not denied my name.
The ministry aka Mr. Armstrong saw that Christ wanted them to be doing something. They discovered that there was a witness to the world that was to be done through that open door.
(Mat 24:14) And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.
Part of the Olivet Prophecy in Matthew 24 was a work that required the “TRUE” Gospel be preached around the world for a “Witness” not to convert but rather to announce the Good News of the Kingdom, the Gospel of Christ, to the world.
And the Church and Mr. Armstrong did a very good job of doing just that. Using the work that Christ said He was personally doing in Philadelphia to accomplish that work of going through the open door.
So how does that compare to what the ministry is doing in Laodicea compared to what Christ is doing in Laodicea? And shouldn’t we be following Christ and supporting His work NOW just like we did in the Philadelphian ERA?
What is the work that CHRIST is doing now and how can we help Him accomplish that work. Also why aren’t we helping HIM?
(Rev 3:14) And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God;
(Rev 3:15) I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot.
(Rev 3:16) So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth.
Notice that Christ is upset with the works of Laodicea. So much so that He is going to spew them out of His mouth(most likely referring to having them go through the Great Tribulation).
(Rev 3:17) Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked:
Here you see why the church is in this condition. They think because that have all these spiritual goods(truths if you will) that they have no need of anything else(self-satisfied). But even so He sees them as wretched, miserable, poor, blind and naked.
(Rev 3:18) I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see.
He is counseling the people and the ministry to LEARN from the trials that He sends them so that they can truly be clothed in righteousness. So that they are no longer naked in His eyes. Also that they open their eyes to be able to see. Having your eyes opened can only come as a result of sincere prayer to God for that vision. His Holy Spirit is the eyesalve that we need because only through the indwelling of the Spirit can we truly see how wretched and miserable we are so that we can be about correcting that in our lives. But we have to be asking for that vision it doesn’t come automatically. You have to anoint your eyes by praying that god open them to allow you to see your true condition.
(Rev 3:19) As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent.
The end result of all this is a Zealous Repentant attitude.
(Rev 3:20) Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.
Here is the work Christ is doing in this ERA of the Church, He is working with each member of the body of Christ to get them to open up the door of their minds and hearts to HIM so He can come in and feed them what they need for what is coming. This is the Last ERA of God’s church before He returns to take over the reins of the government from satan. Some of them will be seen as worthy to escape what is coming and this is Christs last ditch effort to protect as many as possible from the ravages of the Great Tribulation.
So why then is the ministry of our church groups still trying to do what Christ stopped doing? They are still trying to witness to the world as if that is the work that Christ is doing but it is not. Teaching the Gospel of Christ to the world and making Disciples in all nations is still very much a part of the job of the Church BUT the emphasis has been changed by Christ from reaching the world to preparing the bride. So why is reaching the world still seem to be the most important aspect of the ministry in this ERA of the Church.
Why aren’t they focused on preparing us for what is coming, teaching us to be Kings and Priests in the Kingdom, showing us how we might be accounted worthy to escape what is coming(remember fully half of those who go through the Tribulation are not going to make it into the Kingdom).
I am not saying that we should stop preaching the Gospel to the world, but that work described in Matthew 24:14 and Rev 10:11 was accomplished during the Philadelphian ERA of the church by Mr. Armstrong. He said that when he died it would be over.
(Rev 3:21) To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne.
(Rev 3:22) He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches.
There is so much more that can be done by the leaders in our church groups for each of us as individuals.
- Teach us how to lead as well as how to speak.
- Teach us how to really USE God’s Holy Spirit to grow and overcome.
- Teach us how to ask for and use the Gifts of God’s Holy Spirit.
- Teach how to recognize the gifts and talents that the Holy Spirit has imparted to EACH of us and how to use them properly.
- Teach us the bible so deeply that it is part of us
- Teach us how to think and react as Christ did so that even if we are surprised by some tactic of satan we will always act appropriately
- Teach us how to live a proper Christian life so we are Lights to our communities and not embarrasments
- Teach us how to overcome our shortcomings and GROW in Grace and the Knowledge of Christ.
- Teach us where we really are in Prophecy, that we are at the very end not still witnessing to the world but getting ready for Christ.
- Teach us to watch for the 1335 not the return of Christ at the Resurrection. We should be watching for the time when Christ will gather those who have truly opened the door to Him to a place of safety. Because not only might you be saved out of what is coming but also will realize that once that gathering happens you will have a literal countdown to the return of Christ.
So why aren’t the leaders focused on these things instead of the witness work? It makes you wonder. Maybe they couldn’t justify how they are spending God’s tithes. Maybe they should be spending them in a different way, a way that would actually save many spiritual lives in the times that are just ahead. Maybe they want to look like the old church so they can attract more members to their flavor of the Body of Christ. Only God truly knows.
We have many many very talented and skilled leaders in the various congregations of God. And with the advent of the Internet the ability to train and teach is enhanced in ways that Mr. Armstrong could not even imagine. If we truly focused on the membership of the body of Christ regardless of their group affiliations and made various training programs and teaching programs available to all of us that focused on preparing the bride and preparing us for our jobs as Kings and Priests in the Kingdom no doubt it would be seen by Christ as our efforts to Help Him with what He is doing(Knocking on our doors so that we can open and be fed by Him)
All you larger groups out there, think about this. If you would provide this kind of service to ALL the peoples of God with no overt need to JOIN your particular group, we are all after all part of the body of Christ if we have His spirit and if we do not have his spirit we would not be interested most likely anyway, you would likely gain many tithe paying members who might otherwise not be interested in joining up with your group.
FREE YOU WERE GIVEN, FREELY GIVE! Just as Mr. Armstrong gave to the world the Gospel of Christ in Booklets and Magazines(without monetary cost) you should now be focused on the BODY of Christ, give to them without payment(membership in your particular brand of God’s called out ones)and those that are truly part of the body will naturally move toward where they are being fed.
Just saying this might be a way that God will use to call us back together. Or not but it is something that the leadership should be doing in any case, if they truly want to assist Christ with the work that He is doing NOW!.