“The church is stagnant. Its lethargy is driven by complacent self-satisfaction founded on shadows of the past and vain hopes that what it has is good enough. Blind
to its condition, it is repugnant and repulsive. So much so that God wants to turn away in disgust.”*
You just read a simple paraphrase of God’s description of the church in Laodicea (Rev. 3:14–17). Typically, we apply this to our church and focus on our problems. We look at the counsel in the next few verses and talk about what we must do to revive this struggling church. Often we think we should solve our own problems. But what if the solution is much simpler? What if we find the answer in a Person?
Jesus still speaks to His struggling church with an incredible invitation, “Behold, I stand at the door, and knock” (v. 20). He promises that as we respond He will grant us the intimacy described as “eating together”—one of the most intimate experiences in John’s culture. Then Jesus continues with the promise of sharing His throne with those who overcome (v. 21). Paul tells us that God has already lifted us to His throne and thus has given us the victory in Jesus (Eph. 2:5, 6).
Could the revival we long for come with our response to the invitation of Jesus? After all, John tells us that when we have Jesus the Son, we have life (1 John 5:11 13). I find only one way to revival—saying Yes to Jesus, allowing Him into every single area of our lives and church. Everything else comes with Jesus.
—Ben Maxson, DMin, is lead pastor of the Seventh-day Adventist Church in Paradise, California.