Dr. Stephen Phinney
'I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot;
I wish that you were cold or hot. 'So because you are lukewarm,
and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of My mouth.
Seriously, what is really being said by Jesus in this passage? After many years of working with leaders and students of the Bible, I can say this. Most dismiss this passage by attaching this warning to others who suffer with the extreme version of being lukewarm in their faith. Sad to say, this is not the case.
While the generalized conclusion of the Christian populous is correct, the warning was given to all self-proclaimed Christians who cannot see the authentic meaning and function of being indwelt by Christ. This is any and all of us who have allowed our pleasantries to shadow the believer's ability to share in the sufferings of Jesus. The warning includes people who use Grace as an excuse, legalist that use the Law to motivate others, and the group that uses the Word to sustain their evil.
I will spit you out of My mouth.
I cannot think of a more horrific statement. Does this mean that the audience is fake Christians that our Lord has not digested? Does Jesus test our authenticity before receiving a person into His body? Is He referencing the group who follow Him verses being indwelt by Him? These are all great questions. And, I have asked the Lord these perplexing questions.
Recently, I have been awakened by the Lord in the middle of the night, usually after a soul stirring "nightmare." I awaken each time in a fright. First of all, I would like to say having the gift of prophecy is no picnic. Those who have been belabored with this gift know what I am talking about. It is daunting and relentless.
I have been journaling the words of the Lord for many years. However, as of late, He has burdened me with messages He is requiring me to share with the masses. While I prefer keeping our one-on-one revelations private, I am compelled to be obedient. The following message is one of those messages I have been instructed to release to the public. This warning came at 3:05 in the wee hours of last night.
Now the word of the LORD came to me (Stephen) saying, go and proclaim in the ears of Laodicea, saying, ‘Thus says the LORD, I remember concerning the devotion of your youth, your first love for Me, your following after Me in the wilderness, and through a land not sown. The Bride of Christ is holy to the LORD, the first of My Son’s harvest. All who ate of it became freed until guilt arrived; evil came upon them, declares the LORD.’ Hear the word of the LORD Church of Laodicea, O house of the lukewarm, and all the families of the house of Laodicea. Thus says the LORD, what injustice did your fathers find in Me, that they went far from Me and walked after emptiness and became empty?
They did not say, ‘Where is the LORD who brought us up out of the land of bondage, who led us through the wilderness, a land of deserts and pits, a land of drought and deep darkness through a land that no one crossed and where no man dwelt?’ I brought you into the fruitful land of My Israel to eat its fruit and good things. But you came and defiled My land, and My inheritance you made an abomination. The pastors did not say, ‘Where is the LORD?’ But now you handle the Law and My Grace like those who do not truly know Me. Your teachers also transgressed against Me, and the prophets prophesied by demonic influence and walked after things that did not advance My Gospel. Therefore I will yet contend with you lukewarm believers, declares the LORD, and I will contend with your sons’ sons. Cross to the coastlands of nations and see the proof of My hand dealing harshly with those who come against My Holy land.
Has a nation changed gods when they were not gods? But My people have changed their glory for that which does not profit. Be appalled, O heavens, at them. And shudder, be desolate, declares the LORD. For My people have committed two evils: They have forsaken Me, the fountain of living waters, to hew for themselves cisterns, broken cisterns that can hold no water.
Is the Bride of Christ a slave? Or is she a homeborn servant? Why has she become a prey? The young lions have roared at her; they have roared loudly. And yet many of them have made My land a waste; Her cities and people have been destroyed.
Soon the lands will be without inhabitants. Also, the nations have shaved the crown of your head. Have you not harmed yourself by forsaking the LORD your God when I led you in the way? But now, what are you doing on the road to bondage again? Is it to drink the lukewarm waters of the enemy? Or what are you doing on the road to selfish passions? Is it to drink the waters that cannot quench? Your own wickedness will correct you, and your apostasies will reprove you. Know therefore and see that it is evil and bitter for you to forsake the LORD your God, while the dread of Me is not in you, declares the Lord GOD of hosts.
For long ago, I broke your yoke and tore off your bonds, But you said, ‘I will not serve!’ You have lain down as a harlot on every high hill and under every green tree. Yet I planted you a choice vine, My Son, a completely faithful seed. How, then, have you turned yourself before Me into the degenerate shoots of a foreign vine? Although you wash yourself with lye and use much soap, the stain of your iniquity remains before Me, declares the Lord GOD. How can you say, ‘I am not defiled; I have not gone after the ways of the Antichrist? Look at the way of your pathway! Know what you have done!
You act as a swift young camel entangling her ways, a wild donkey accustomed to the wilderness that sniffs the wind in her passion. In the time of her heat, who can turn her away? All who seek her will not become weary; they will find her in her month. Keep your feet from being unshod and your throat from thirst.
But you said, ‘It is hopeless! I have loved strangers, and after them, I will walk.’ As the thief is shamed when he is discovered, so will the house of those who think they are the Bride of Christ will be shamed. They shall face Me soon, their false teachers, leaders, pastors, and prophets. They worship their flesh and say, to a tree, ‘You are my father.’ And to a stone, ‘You gave me birth.’ They have turned their back to Me while brazen in approaching Me. But in the time of their trouble, they will say, ‘Arise and save us.’ But where are your gods which you made for yourself? Let them arise if they can save you in the time of your trouble & the soon coming Tribulation. According to the number of your cities are your gods, O Laodicea.
Why do you contend with Me? You have all transgressed against Me, declares the LORD. In vain, I have struck your sons; they accepted no chastening. Your sword has devoured My prophets like a destroying lion. O lukewarm generation, heed the word of the LORD. Have I been a wilderness to the lukewarm or a land of thick darkness? Why do My people say, ‘We are free to roam; we will no longer come to You?’ Can a virgin forget her ornaments, or a bride her attire? Yet My people have forgotten Me days without number.
How well you prepare your way to seek love! Therefore even the wicked women, you have taught your ways. Also, on your skirts is found the lifeblood of the innocent poor, and unborn babes; they did not threaten you. But despite all these things, you said, ‘I am innocent; Surely God’s anger is turned away from me.’ Behold, I will enter into judgment with all those who serve me with the pretense, ‘I have not sinned.’ Why do you live your life without changing your ways? Soon you will be put to shame by the Antichrist as you were put to shame by the deeds of your flesh. You will go out with your hands on your head when he arrives. For I the LORD have rejected those of his dark domain, whom you trust. Come forth and repent. I will receive you with Grace and Mercy!
History Note: Many support the ideology of the 7-Churches are organisms of the past. While I get this thinking, the truth is, descendants of the seven churches exist in and around your neighborhood. The reality is, the positive and negative things that Jesus said about each church is referencing a people, not the organization.
Since the Lord has confirmed many times that my ministry while on the earth is to the people of Laodicea, I will be posting every Word of Knowledge and Word of Wisdom that Lord requires of me to post.
So one is given the word of wisdom through the Spirit, and to another the word of knowledge according to the same Spirit; to another faith by the same Spirit, and to another gifts of healing by the one Spirit..." (1 Corinthians 12:8-9)
Until next time,
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Lord Jesus, You are my God! I have sinned before You. I repent from all of my lukewarm ways. If I am not filled with the Holy Spirit, I am asking now that You send Your Spirit to live within my mortal body. I request that the Spirit will hold all my thoughts captive unto You. May I release Your mind within me on a moment by moment basis. I ask that each decision I make is Your decision within me. When I am tempted by Your enemy to slide back into lukewarmness, cause my speech and actions to be as hot as fire - the fire of the Holy Spirit. Cause me to stand out in the world as a Bridal member of Your choice virgins. May Your WILL be done in, and through me. I thank You for Your Redemption and renewal. It is in Your name I pray, Amen.
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