TODAY’S BIBLE READING:
TODAY’S BIBLE VERSE(S):
Revelation 2:4-5 (ESV) “But I have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first. Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent, and do the works you did at first. If not, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place, unless you repent.”
REFLECTIONS ON TODAY’S BIBLE VERSE(S):
The New Testament book of Ephesians is one of the climaxes of the New Testament. While the church had its troubles, it received a gem when Paul wrote his letter to them.
But, when we fast-forward about 40 years later into the 90’s when many believe that John wrote the book of Revelation, we see that something happened in the church. While they maintained their doctrinal purity and did some great things for the Lord and while they courageously stood up again error and false teachers, they lost something. They lost their love.
“But I have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first.” (Revelation 2:4)
They were still standing up for truth and doing some wonderful deeds. But, their motive had changed. They weren’t doing it because of love anymore.
- Maybe they did everything because they felt it was their religious duty.
- Maybe it was because they wanted to be respected by others.
- Maybe it was because they would feel guilty if they didn’t.
- The possibilities of various motives are endless when we give up on love.
While they may not have felt that their change in motive was a big deal, God gave them a very stern warning…
“Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent, and do the works you did at first. If not, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place, unless you repent.” (Revelation 2:5)
In Revelation 1, we realize that Jesus was walking among the lampstands as He took care of them. That picture seems to illustrate that Jesus takes ownership over and cares for each of His churches.
So, when the threat is given that the lampstand would be removed, it seems to mean that the church would lose its legitimacy in God’s eyes. Jesus wouldn’t claim ownership over the congregation nor feel compelled to care for it. The church would continue to meet but Jesus would not meet with them.
Being motivated by love is not a small thing. If we don’t love, nothing we do matters. Absolutely nothing matters.
“If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing.” (1 Corinthians 13:1-3)
Friend, are you motivated by love? Do you do what you do because you love God and love others? If not, then ask God to help you grow in your love for Him and others.
Because if you don’t, nothing you do matters. Absolutely nothing.