Bible Society of South Africa
Gerhard Lindeque

Seven days of inspiration from Revelation - Day 5

Wake up!

Bible text(s)

The Message to Sardis

1“To the angel of the church in Sardis write:

“This is the message from the one who has the seven spirits of God and the seven stars. I know what you are doing; I know that you have the reputation of being alive, even though you are dead! 2So wake up, and strengthen what you still have before it dies completely. For I find that what you have done is not yet perfect in the sight of my God. 3Remember, then, what you were taught and what you heard; obey it and turn from your sins. If you do not wake up, I will come upon you like a thief, and you will not even know the time when I will come. 4But a few of you there in Sardis have kept your clothes clean. You will walk with me, clothed in white, because you are worthy to do so. 5Those who win the victory will be clothed like this in white, and I will not remove their names from the book of the living. In the presence of my Father and of his angels I will declare openly that they belong to me.

6“If you have ears, then, listen to what the Spirit says to the churches!

Revelation 3:1-6GNBOpen in Bible reader

God has to speak to us loudly, sometimes, to give us a wake up call. Like the other congregations, the church of Sardis in this section, also represents the church of all times and the typical circumstances that sometimes occur within the church. One of them is that sometimes, it can seem like the church is alive when, in fact, it is spiritually dead. The problem is that a congregation can appear alive in the eyes of people, but in God’s eyes they are actually spiritually dead. They do not know God and do not live in a relationship with him.

Still, God does not write off the church. God maintains the church through his Spirit and through the preaching of his word. The church is warned to wake up. This reminds us of the parable of the virgins with their lamps, who were not ready for the arrival of the groom. Where people neglect their relationship with God, it affects the heart of the church. Then, it is necessary to return to the basic principles of the gospel – the good news of God’s grace and love.

Spiritual deadness is not reversed by making superficial changes. It only changes when we realise that it is only through God’s grace that we are cleansed of sin. This is represented by the white clothes. What an unspeakable privilege is it that our names will be written forever in the book of life. We have been acquitted by Jesus Christ and belong to him forever. Nothing or no one can take that away from us.

Think about:

  1. 1.How does a relationship with God die?
  2. 2.What is the core of our relationship with God?
  3. 3.Should we live in fear of Jesus’ return?

Bible Society of South Africav.4.14.1
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