Keep Watch - Episode 47

Keep Watch - Episode 47
Season 3 Sweet Selah Moments Podcas...

 
 
00:00 / 00:30:32
 
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PARABLES

Waiting is hard. It's especially hard when you have No Idea how long the wait will be. Join Nicole and Sharon as they talk about waiting well. Puzzle out the parable about the bridesmaids waiting for the groom with them. There are so many layers to a parable. Let's explore this one together.

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Read the transcript for Keep Watch

Speaker 1 (00:00):

Welcome to the Sweet Selah moments podcast. We hope this little pause in your day refreshes and encourages you friend. Let’s take time to know God through his word and love him more and more. This Sweet Selah moments podcast is brought to you by Word Radio and Sweet Selah Ministries.

Nicole (00:21):

Welcome to episode 47, Keep Watch. Sharon, do you have any good examples of waiting for someone who is late to share with us today?

Sharon (00:30):

I just happen to have one. And in this example, I was the one who was late and my mother was the one keeping watch. Oh, my poor mother. She still like turns the wrong color when she talks about it. I really freaked her out. And I had no idea. I was a teenager. I was oblivious to the pain I caused her. I was a hostess at a restaurant, that was my job, and I just got my license and it was the first night that I took the car myself and drove myself to work and I was feeling pretty good about it. Right. So, I get to work. Everything’s fine. And a waitress has car problems and she needs a ride home. Well, I can take her home, right?

Nicole (01:15):

Yeah. You have your license.

Sharon (01:17):

I said, I will take you home. Well, she lived quite a ways away and it was a foggy night. So I was driving ridiculously slowly because it was the first day I’d had my license and then she had troubles. So I sat and listened to her troubles in the car. I was being so kind, Nicole.

Nicole (01:34):

You were so kind. Your poor mom!

Sharon (01:34):

Meanwhile my mother’s like, she gets out of work at nine, it’s, 10:30 at night.

Nicole (01:41):

Wow.

Sharon (01:41):

Where is my daughter? She was pacing. She was crying. She was praying, you know, and I was in the house at like, you know, 11:00. Oh mom, I just had the best time. I got to share about Jesus with this waitress. And she’s like, oh, hard to get mad at a daughter who’s doing holy things.

Nicole (02:02):

Right.

Sharon (02:03):

But there was a little bit of a lecture on, let me know next time. And of course, no cell phones back then, Nicole. It’s not like I could call her and she couldn’t text me.

Nicole (02:11):

Oh, that’s right. How did we survive before cell phones?

Sharon (02:14):

Oh my goodness,

Nicole (02:15):

At least with teenagers, you know?

Sharon (02:16):

Yes. These mothers pacing. So even now a kid can forget their cell phone and drive their mother crazy.

Nicole (02:21):

Yes.

Sharon (02:22):

Or Oh, I had it turned off and I didn’t realize it, you know, kind of thing. But anyways, that is my story of waiting. And my poor little mummy still feels badly about it.

Nicole (02:31):

I bet.

Sharon (02:31):

Yeah, yeah.

Nicole (02:35):

Well, I do not do well with waiting either. Although I am usually the one who people are waiting on. I am a bit scattered and being punctual is not one of my traits, but it’s never fun to have to wait for something or someone. I think one of the longest stretches of waiting was with my first baby.

Sharon (02:55):

Oh Yes.

Nicole (02:56):

She was a week overdue. It was the end of August, beginning of September.

Sharon (03:04):

Oh no, hot!

Nicole (03:04):

Super hot and I was miserable. It felt like the longest week of my life.

Sharon (03:08):

And did everybody ask you every day, so?

Nicole (03:10):

Yes! Still no baby? No, don’t ask me. I was pretty grumpy that week for sure.

Sharon (03:16):

I can understand that. Yes I can. You know one of my hardest waits was a short one. It’s so funny, but it felt eternal to me. Ray had been at the Persian Gulf War and his battalion had just returned. And so the girls and I, and all the other families who were gathered in this big gymnasium to wait for them to come through the magic door, you know, and be reunited and the Stars and Stripes Newspaper was there to get pictures of us hugging, you know, all the stuff, but they kept the guys three hours, Nicole, I don’t know what they were doing with them. They had landed the plane.

Nicole (03:56):

They were there?

Sharon (03:56):

They were there, but they were behind that door.

Nicole (03:59):

That’s torture!

Sharon (04:00):

It is torture. And Kathryn and Mary were not big they were little. So I think Kathryn was first grade, so like six and Mary was four.

Nicole (04:09):

Oh my goodness.

Sharon (04:10):

And they’re sitting on a hard gymnasium, you know, like bleachers for three hours.

Nicole (04:16):

I don’t know how you survived.

Sharon (04:17):

It was awful. It was like the worst wait of my life. And so, but then of course, I mean if the Stars and Stripes wanted emotional pictures they got them because we were all so emotionally a mess from having to wait.

Nicole (04:30):

Just bring them in!

Sharon (04:31):

Yes, we were all hugging and crying. It was beautiful in the end, but it was really, really hard.

Nicole (04:37):

Oh, I’ll bet.

Sharon (04:37):

So waiting can be hard. It really can be hard. So we’re going to talk today about three parables, about waiting for the second coming, which is different. Jesus tells three separate ones and we’re going to study them one at a time because that’s been a long wait. Right. The disciples were thinking it was going to be then.

Nicole (04:58):

Yeah.

Sharon (04:59):

And oh, it’s been 2000 plus years and it still hasn’t arrived. So we’re going to read about them. But first of all, have you ever watched like a movie on the rapture where people are minding their own business and all of a sudden, whoop, the Christian gets scooped up?

Nicole (05:14):

I know that’s so crazy to think about isn’t it? Yeah. I remember we watched the Left Behind movie back when I was a kid. And those were really interesting to see like how the world reacted to people suddenly disappearing, you know?

Sharon (05:24):

Yes. Yes.

Nicole (05:24):

Or there’s that thought that we would be raptured and we’re still on earth.

Sharon (05:26):

We’re still on earth.

Nicole (05:28):

Imagine how horrible that would feel?

Sharon (05:29):

Yeah. There was a similar kind of movie back in my day, not the same one. And, and it really freaked me out a little bit, you know, because, but it also did the good thing of making me keep watch, because you can kind of get lax about that. But I can remember standing in line at the high school cafeteria with my tray and all of a sudden having this thought, it could be right this second, I’m holding my tray of food. I could be just whoop! Gone! So, yeah, so we’re taught to wait. We’re taught to keep watch. And so let’s read the three parables that deal with this now. And let’s talk about them because God wants us to wait and watch in a certain way. He wants us to keep watch, keep watching. So, why don’t you read Matthew 25:1-13? I’ll let you read the first one all by yourself.

Nicole (06:21):

All right. The parable of the ten bridesmaids, “Then the kingdom of heaven will be like ten bridesmaids who took their lamps and went to meet the bridegroom. Five of them were foolish and five were wise. The five who were foolish didn’t take enough olive oil for their lamps, but the other five were wise enough to take along extra oil. When the bridegroom was delayed, they all became drowsy and fell asleep. At midnight, they were aroused by the shout. Look, the bridegroom is coming, come out and meet him. All the bridesmaids got up and prepared their lamps. Then the five foolish ones asked the others. Please give us some of your oil because our lamps are going out. But the others replied, we don’t have enough for all of us, go to a shop and buy some for yourselves. But while they were gone to buy oil, the bridegroom came, then those who were ready, went in with him to the marriage feast and the door was locked. Later when the other five bridesmaids returned, they stood outside calling Lord, Lord open the door for us, but he called back, believe me, I don’t know you. So you too must keep watch, for you do not know the day or the hour of my return.”

Sharon (07:31):

Hey, that’s pretty solemn, isn’t it? We must keep watch. This is not a ‘might be nice if you were looking out for me’ at all.

Nicole (07:39):

Right.

Sharon (07:40):

In fact bad things happen if you haven’t kept watching. So, wow. Wow! So, well, I asked you to do some research for me, so hopefully you did. Tell us about a typical wedding in Jesus’ day, because this is weird, bridesmaids waiting for the bridegroom, this whole thing doesn’t resonate with today’s weddings.

Nicole (07:59):

Right. It’s not a thing you normally hear.

Sharon (08:01):

Right, cause the groomsmen are all up front with the groom at our weddings and then the bridesmaids kind of walk on in and see them. It’s a little different. So tell me, what did you learn?

Nicole (08:11):

Well, this was really interesting to research. So Jewish weddings were a really big deal. They lasted over a week sometimes.

Sharon (08:18):

Wow.

Nicole (08:18):

Yeah. It was quite the feast. This was one of the biggest festivals in a young person’s life so they made sure it was done well. So after the betrothal of the couple, it was the bridegroom’s job to go and prepare a home for him and his new bride. This usually took about a year or so, but the exact day was never known. So when he would be done, he could go get the bride and she kind of had to be ready without much warning.

Sharon (08:41):

Wow.

Nicole (08:42):

Yeah. Could you imagine? That’d be a little…?

Sharon (08:45):

Yes, that would! You’d have to have your gown always ready and flowers.

Nicole (08:49):

And your hair. So like waiting and ready because you didn’t know when he would come.

Sharon (08:51):

When he would actually have finished the house.

Nicole (08:53):

Yeah. So her bridesmaids there to kind of be on the lookout for the arrival of the bridegroom and probably help her get dressed pretty quickly.

Sharon (09:00):

He’s coming, he’s coming.

Nicole (09:01):

Yeah, and the bridegroom was supposed to come right after sundown on the day that he was coming to get her, to carry his new bride with much fanfare to his house. It was kind of like this little parade. They would blow the shofar horn and the bridesmaids and the bride would hear that and kind of get ready. And he would come with this litter to carry her to their home.

Sharon (09:19):

And it’s the house he built for her?

Nicole (09:20):

Yes, isn’t that so sweet?

Sharon (09:21):

That actually is really precious.

Nicole (09:22):

It sounds so beautiful, like ‘he’s coming!’ And they kind of all get ready.

Sharon (09:26):

And he’s so proud of himself because he has the house ready.

Nicole (09:28):

Yeah. It’s just, it’s a really cool tradition.

Sharon (09:31):

That is. So different.

Nicole (09:32):

So as they heard the shofar horn and the bridegroom coming with his group of people the guests and the bridesmaids had to have their oil lamps ready. They were each, all the attendants, were expected to carry their own lamp on the way there and light their own way. Actually, if someone was seen walking in that procession without their own lamp, they were assumed to be a wedding crasher or even someone with bad intentions.

Sharon (09:59):

Wow.

Nicole (10:00):

Yeah. So it was kind of like your, your invitation or your ticket. Like, I am part of the wedding party.

Sharon (10:04):

Because I have my lamp.

Nicole (10:05):

I have my lamp. I’m prepared for this, I’m part of this group. If you didn’t have it, they’re like, wait a minute, you’re not part of this.

Sharon (10:11):

You don’t belong, you’re not going to get the feast.

Nicole (10:11):

Why are you here? Yeah, so that’s why it was so important for the bridesmaids to be ready for this event to, you know, get up and go when it happened.

Sharon (10:19):

Wow, wow.

Nicole (10:20):

Isn’t that’s so cool? That makes it so much more of the parable.

Sharon (10:23):

This all makes more sense.

Nicole (10:27):

Yes.

Sharon (10:27):

It really does. Well this bridegroom was super delayed in that he doesn’t come till midnight. So that’s an odd time to go pick up your wife, right?

Nicole (10:33):

It is. It’s like, Oh man!

Sharon (10:34):

Yeah. And I understand them being asleep because I would go to bed between 8:30 and 9:30 if it were up to me, Ray is the night owl. He would go to bed at midnight.

Nicole (10:46):

Right.

Sharon (10:46):

If it were up to him. So we compromise on 10:30 and sometimes I am prying my eyelids open cause we always go to bed together and we pray together. That’s just our deal and then I take a nap during the day, because I’m so tired.

Nicole (11:01):

Stayed up late.

Sharon (11:01):

Why does he? So anyways, I’m all about understanding they’re asleep. But even the ones that had the extra oil, they might’ve slept, but they, they could get up quickly and they can do the things.

Nicole (11:10):

Right, they were still ready for if he did come late.

Sharon (11:12):

The others hadn’t even bought their oil yet, which they should have bought their oil.

Nicole (11:16):

Right, especially if they knew all this was happening.

Sharon (11:17):

Yes, so well, the lesson I’m getting from this, one of them anyways is that I should expect a long delay before my bride groom, our bridegroom Jesus returns. And we’ve had that, we’ve had a long delay. Jesus is talking about it here. It is certainly panned out to be true. We’re still waiting, but I need to be ready to wait long, you know? You don’t just go, well, forget it he’s not coming. We’re to watch well and keep watch and wait long.

Nicole (11:47):

Right.

Sharon (11:47):

So what do you think the extra oil that is there for the long wait represents for us today? What is kind of our extra oil that we will need in order to wait during this long delay?

Nicole (12:00):

It’s such a long delay. I think, I think of how many times people have predicted the end of the world or think they know when Jesus is going to return. Like you said earlier, even the early Christians thought he was going to come back right away. The disciples were like, oh, he’s coming back next week. Let’s get ready. They thought he was coming. So I think if we stopped preparing for him, stop growing as believers, you know, think we’ve had enough church time, enough Bible verses memorized. And we just do nothing and think he’s going to come tomorrow. We will be very unprepared when he does come.

Sharon (12:28):

True. True.

Nicole (12:30):

You know, we kind of get lazy in that. We’re not actively waiting for him. We’re not watching for him.

Sharon (12:35):

I like that. We’re not actively waiting. Right.

Nicole (12:37):

We’re just like, Oh, you know, when it comes it comes and it’ll happen.

Sharon (12:40):

And now in the meantime, I’m going to have another ice cream cone.

Nicole (12:43):

Yeah. Just live up life a little bit. And you know, I did my…, you know? But we should be reading his word and sharing the gospel up until that very moment we hear the trumpet sound, you know? That he is coming just like the wise bridesmaids who are prepared and did the work in order to be ready to go to the feast. I feel like they were really wanting to see the bridegroom, unlike the others who just did enough to get by and hoping to rely on others.

Sharon (13:04):

Yeah, that’s true. They wanted to see, they wanted to be a part of it. They wanted to be ready.

Nicole (13:10):

Yes, they had all their supplies and extra supplies ready to make sure they made it all the way to the feast no matter what.

Sharon (13:13):

Yeah, because this is a big deal.

Nicole (13:15):

Yeah. We don’t want to miss this.

Sharon (13:16):

Yes, and I think that’s another thing, Jesus’ second coming IS a big deal. And we don’t want to miss that banquet, which we’ve already talked about.

Nicole (13:23):

Yes.

Sharon (13:23):

We want to be there.

Nicole (13:25):

It’ll be a great banquet.

Sharon (13:26):

Yes. Yes. All right. Well that’s passage number one. The second passage that talks about waiting and watching for Jesus’ return is a shorter one. It’s found, like the Matthew passage, right in the middle of a discourse on the end times. So Jesus is popping them in right there. So that’s interesting. So I’m going to read this one. It’s Mark 13:32-37, “However, says Jesus, no one knows the day or hour when these things will happen. Not even the angels in heaven or the Son himself, only the Father knows. And since you don’t know when that time will come, be on guard, stay alert. The coming of the Son of Man can be illustrated by the story of a man going on a long trip. When he left home, he gave each of his slaves instructions about the work they were to do. And he told the gatekeeper to watch for his return. You too must keep watch for you do not know when the Master of the household will return. In the evening, at midnight, before dawn or at daybreak, don’t let him find you sleeping when he arrives without warning. I say to you, what I say to everyone, watch for him.” Oh my goodness, this language is strong language. Here we are again, watch, be active, stay alert. So I’m learning several things here. First of all, interesting, while Jesus was on earth, he didn’t even know the hour that he would return again. Not even him.

Nicole (14:49):

That’s crazy.

Sharon (14:50):

Isn’t it crazy to think about because he’s God, but I think God willingly released some knowing in the body on earth. I’m pretty sure that in heaven, Jesus knows now when he’s coming back.

Nicole (15:03):

Right.

Sharon (15:04):

So, but anyway, we don’t know. That’s clear. That was pretty obvious. So that’s something I learned. It’s a major point here. If someone tries to tell you the date of the second coming, don’t believe it.

Nicole (15:13):

Right.

Sharon (15:15):

We’re just to be in a state of readiness, of keeping watch, let’s not assume we’re smart enough to figure it all out.

Nicole (15:21):

That’s a lot. That’s a big job and yeah it’s not.

Sharon (15:23):

Second of all, he’s going to arrive without warning. It’s not going to be like, oh, I see now that everything has lined up for him and he’ll be here in two minutes. It’s not going to be like that.

Nicole (15:36):

Right, get ready.

Sharon (15:37):

So we need to, at all times be aware that this very moment could be the moment if he so chooses, the sun could darken and the stars fall out right now, you know. It’s not like we can know that it’s far away because those things haven’t happened yet. I think we have to watch against that because if you start to say, well, the temple has to be rebuilt first and this, all these things have to happen. I don’t know when Jesus is coming for us.

Nicole (16:00):

Right.

Sharon (16:01):

You know? So I don’t know.

Nicole (16:03):

Be ready.

Sharon (16:03):

God knows. We need to live like there might not be many days left for us. So how does that change how we live, Nicole, if we’re really thinking, wow, Jesus could come tomorrow or tonight.

Nicole (16:17):

I know, that changes everything if we have that mindset, you know? It’s funny, I was getting coffee last week and I heard this song on the speaker, in the drive through, and it was the song ‘Live Like You’re Dying’. And I was like, oh, it’s such a good phrase. And I think as believers, we really should live that way. I think that looks like us expecting him to come at any moment and making sure that if he came right now, he’d be pleased with what he found me doing. Not to be caught doing something that I really shouldn’t be doing. And that I would be excited to see him and not scrambling to make things right with a friend I had gossiped about, or, you know, asked forgiveness from my husband for unkind words I had said, or like rushing in to witness to a family member that I’ve been putting off talking to. Like, we need to do those things today.

Sharon (16:57):

Before it’s too late.

Nicole (16:58):

Before it’s too late. Yeah. We don’t want to be caught rushing or panicked. We want to be excited to see him.

Sharon (17:02):

Yes. Yes.

Nicole (17:04):

I’m ready.

Sharon (17:05):

Right. I’m ready. Yeah. I think of the ones that still don’t know Christ, you know, have I shared? I need to share? I can’t make them and God ultimately is in charge of their salvation, but yes, we need to be thinking about this all the time.

Nicole (17:17):

Listen to those promptings as they come.

Sharon (17:19):

Yeah. And even like the forgiveness with your husband and stuff, I don’t ever want Ray to leave with me mad. I always am like, all right. So we had a fight, but I really love you.

Nicole (17:29):

Right. Exactly. You’re still cooling off but just in case.

Sharon (17:33):

Yes, just in case something happens I love you. I just always want that to be my last words to child, to anybody.

Nicole (17:39):

Exactly.

Sharon (17:39):

You know, we don’t need to keep bitterness in our hearts. So, all right. Your turn, third parable and let’s, as we’re reading it, think about what’s different or added to what learned from what Luke has to say.

Nicole (17:52):

All right, Luke 12:35-38, “Be ready for the Lord’s coming. Be dressed for service and keep your lamps burning as though you were waiting for your master to return from the wedding feast, then you will be ready to open the door and let him in the moment he arrives and knocks. The servants who are ready and waiting for his return will be rewarded. I tell you the truth. He himself will seek them, put on an apron and serve them as they sit and eat. He may come in the middle of the night or just before dawn, but whenever he comes, he will reward the servants who are ready.”

Sharon (18:26):

Huh. So what’s, what’s new in this one, what’s been added that weren’t in the others?

Nicole (18:31):

The reward part, that’s kind of neat that he’s going to come and serve them and reward them for waiting.

Sharon (18:36):

The Master puts on an apron.

Nicole (18:37):

Yeah.

Sharon (18:37):

Yeah. Isn’t that phenomenal?

Nicole (18:40):

It’s mind-boggling.

Sharon (18:42):

Yes.

Nicole (18:42):

This reminds me of when I was younger and my parents would leave me at home with my siblings and we would put off doing the chores until right before they came home and it was a mad dash, like vacuum and do the dishes, you know, and clean up before they came.

Sharon (18:54):

Oh no.

Nicole (18:54):

And if they came home and caught us early and caught us watching TV and we hadn’t cleaned yet, we were in so much trouble. And looking back, we would’ve had so much more fun and had been more relaxed in watching TV and enjoying our reward and anticipating the return if we had done what they had asked us to do first.

Sharon (19:12):

That’s so true.

Nicole (19:14):

You know, it makes the reward better if you’re not just like doing it, like I just wanna watch TV now and then I’ll do the work.

Sharon (19:18):

And then you’re rushing and hoping you have enough time.

Nicole (19:20):

And your panicked.

Sharon (19:20):

Yes, yeah. Same with research papers.

Nicole (19:23):

Yeah.

Sharon (19:23):

You know If I left my research papers to the last minute, it was so exhausting.

Nicole (19:27):

It’s awful to do those last minute things. So I think, you know, in the same way, in order for us to be actually looking forward to Jesus’ return, we need to get to that place of sweet anticipation that comes from belonging to the Lord. So, you know, salvation first who redeemed us from our sins. And then in response, we need to be ready to speak to those. he has put on our heart about him so that they can be ready and anticipating him.

Sharon (19:49):

Yes, I love it. Okay. So here’s the main points I think. First of all, the second coming may be long and it is, let’s forget the ‘may’. The wait it is long, but God’s not willing for any to perish. That’s always one of my favorite verses from First Peter. He wants everyone to come to repentance and that’s why the wait is long, because if there’s even one person left that would still want to accept him, he’s waiting for them. And we don’t know when that last person accepts Christ, but he does. So second of all, the return is going to be unexpected. It’s not going to be, you know, we can precision point it to next Tuesday at 3:00 PM at all. It’s going to be unexpected when it comes. Third, we’re to work as if he’s coming soon, even though it’s been over 2000 years. We need to work as though he’s coming soon.

Nicole (20:41):

He’s still coming soon.

Sharon (20:41):

That’s what we’re supposed to do. We’re to want to be faithful and prepared. So that’s how we’re supposed to live, faithful and prepared for him to come. Ready, eager for him to come and we’re to whatever ‘keep watch’ means, you know, keep watching. I mean, part of it is standing in the cafeteria line, in high school and going, could it be now, could it be now?

Nicole (21:04):

It’s keeping that awareness of it could be any moment.

Sharon (21:06):

It could be any moment. Yes. And sometimes when life is really hard, it’s looking up to heaven and saying, come Lord Jesus, come, isn’t it bad enough here on earth yet?

Nicole (21:18):

I find myself saying that a lot this past year, please Jesus, just come now.

Sharon (21:21):

Yes, just come down. Yes, yes, so you know what happens though, too often when the waiting gets too long, unless we are really in love with the person waiting for like me waiting for Ray to walk through that door, you know and my poor mother loving me on that foggy night and imagining me crashed in a ditch and wondering when she should call the police. You know? I mean, unless we’re feeling deeply about the person we get bored.

Nicole (21:48):

Yeah.

Sharon (21:48):

We give up, we’re like, whatever, you know? We become indifferent and we stop being excited about the whole deal. So indifference is something to watch out for as Christians. We are not to be indifferent about the second coming. So define indifference. What is indifference?

Nicole (22:04):

Indifference means a lack of interest, concern or sympathy; unimportant.

Sharon (22:09):

Yeah. Not thinking it’s important. You’re a dental assistant. What happens when people are indifferent about their teeth?

Nicole (22:17):

Oh, really bad things can happen pretty quick.

Sharon (22:20):

Yeah.

Nicole (22:20):

They can get horrible tooth decay and lose teeth and bone. Um, it’s crazy cause plaque and bacteria that build up in our mouths also build up in our arteries and in our hearts and can lead to heart disease. Yeah. So it’s linked to our whole body health. And the longer you leave it untreated, the worse it gets and it takes a lot of money and time to repair.

Sharon (22:39):

Yes.

Nicole (22:39):

So, it’s much better to prevent it from happening.

Sharon (22:42):

Yes. Brush your teeth and floss.

Nicole (22:42):

Yes. And go see your dentist.

Sharon (22:42):

And that too, even if you’re afraid of him, go anyways. Oh, did I ever tell you what I do at the dentist If it’s a painful procedure?

Nicole (22:53):

No.

Sharon (22:53):

I specifically pray for people being tortured.

Nicole (22:57):

Oh my goodness Sharon.

Sharon (22:59):

I’m not kidding you, isn’t that funny? The dentist has no idea. My mouth is open and I think, all right, this is nothing. There are actually people being tortured for their faith while I’m being tortured so I can empathize. So literally I do. It’s been wonderful.

Nicole (23:13):

What a great trigger though too.

Sharon (23:14):

It’s a great trigger. It is. And then it kind of absolutely helps me get over it. You know, like, I don’t know what I’m talking about.

Nicole (23:25):

Yeah, it helps to pray for tortured people.

Sharon (23:25):

Just thought I’d toss that out there for anybody that’s afraid of the dentist, just pray for tortured people, really tortured people. So, okay. Well, I was totally indifferent about my feet too, until I got plantar fasciitis and now I have to buy really expensive shoes. So, you know, indifference is bad, basically it’s bad. So we can’t just act like Christians and treat church like it’s a club. We need to be either hot or cold for Christ. He wants us hot for him, he wants us passionate for him. So, let’s look at a message Jesus had in Revelation to a church that was indifferent, that was lukewarm. So why don’t you go ahead.

Nicole (24:04):

All right. We’re reading from Revelation 3:14-22. Jesus is talking to one of the churches of that time through his messenger, John, who basically took dictation from the Lord while he was on the Isle of Patmos and saw the Lord in a vision. Pretty cool. Revelation 3:14, I’ll start with verse 14, Sharon, the message to the church in Laodicea. “Write this letter to the angel of the church in Laodicea. This is the message from the One who is the Amen, the faithful and true Witness. The beginning of God’s new creation.”

Sharon (24:33):

“I know all the things you do, that you are neither hot, nor cold. I wish that you were one or the other.”

Nicole (24:40):

“But since you were like lukewarm water, neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of my mouth.”

Sharon (24:46):

“You say, I am rich. I have everything I want. I don’t need a thing. And you don’t realize that you are wretched and miserable and poor and blind and naked.”

Nicole (24:57):

“So I advise you to buy gold from me, gold, that has been purified by fire. Then you will be rich, also buy white garments from me so that you will not be shamed by your nakedness and ointment for your eyes, that you will be able to see.”

Sharon (25:11):

“I correct and discipline everyone I love. So be diligent and turn from your indifference.”

Nicole (25:17):

“Look, I stand at the door and knock. If you hear my voice and open the door, I will come in and we will share a meal together as friends.”

Sharon (25:25):

“Those who are victorious will sit with me on my throne just as I was victorious and sat with my father on his throne.”

Nicole (25:33):

“Anyone with ears to hear must listen to the Spirit and understand what he is saying to the churches.”

Sharon (25:39):

So God would actually rather we be hot or cold instead of indifferent. What do you think that means?

Nicole (25:45):

I think indifference is just so dangerous, Sharon, because we can fool people or lead people astray with our indifferences. You know, we may even fool ourselves and think we are good and going to heaven because we’ve done just enough. And really we haven’t truly accepted him as our Savior. You know, as our God? It’s such a waste of a life to live in different, I think, you know?

Sharon (26:04):

It is, yes.

Nicole (26:05):

I don’t know who says it, but the saying ‘if we stand for nothing we will fall for anything’ comes to mind. And I don’t think God wants that for us. He really, he wants us firmly living in his truth.

Sharon (26:15):

In his truth, absolutely. Yup. Yup. Indifference is not something, I mean, he spit them out of his mouth. That’s pretty blunt.

Nicole (26:21):

Yeah, that’s a very strong description.

Sharon (26:24):

Just like you taste something tepid, you know? Right. Well, I love verse 20 though, because there’s hope for these lukewarm people. He says, look, I stand at the door and knock. If you hear my voice and open the door, I will come in. He knocks, he’s such a gentleman. He doesn’t kick down the door and say, look, get over your indifference.

Nicole (26:45):

I am Lord.

Sharon (26:45):

And we will share a meal together as friends, he says.

Nicole (26:48):

I love that part.

Sharon (26:48):

Nicole, he really wants us to be with him. He wants us to enjoy the riches of heaven. He wants to robe us in righteousness. It must grieve him so much when we basically play the game, but we don’t take time to know him and listen to him ourselves. It’s why on Sweet Selah Ministries, we’re always urging our followers to meet with God themselves each day. And to occasionally take that Sweet Selah day and spend extended time just with him.

Nicole (27:16):

That’s such a special day.

Sharon (27:18):

It is. And we need to do it.

Nicole (27:19):

Yeah, I know. I think back to when I was first engaged and it was all I could think about or talk about was the day I could finally be with Josh as his wife and we could start our life together. And he and I spent that year planning our wedding and looking for a house to live in together. So it was really special. It was right in our minds, you know? But back in Jesus’ time the betrothed couple typically would not see each other for that whole year of preparation.

Sharon (27:44):

Wow.

Nicole (27:44):

So if they weren’t actively preparing to see each other, you know, they may have grown indifferent. You know if he wasn’t excited as he built his little house for her, if she wasn’t, you know, laying out her clothes and preparing herself to leave her family it could have crept in, you know? So I think we don’t, well we don’t know when Jesus is coming, but spending time with him daily, reading the Bible, talking to him and just basking in the love that he has for us. That is what keeps my own heart from becoming indifferent as I wait for him to take me home.

Sharon (28:11):

Yes. Paul gives us such encouragement in Galatians 6:9. Let me read this as we close. “So let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up.” So let me pray for us. Oh Lord, we don’t want to be indifferent to your coming, to you, to who you are. We want to know you. We want to know you so well that our hearts beat fast just wondering how you’re doing, preparing the house you’ve made for us up there in heaven. Father, help us to continue to wait for you, to watch for you, to long for you, to not give up. And we can’t wait, Lord. We can’t wait for the day when you will take us home to be with you, in Jesus’ name. Amen.

Nicole (29:08):

It’s hard to believe friends, but season three is coming to an end. We have loved studying out Proverbs and parables with you. And we learned so much through our Easter season studies too. We have one more week of season three and you don’t want to miss it. Come on back next week for episode 48, Shh, Be Quiet. We’ll be talking about the lost art of being quiet in a noisy world. Would you also consider becoming a podcast partner by just donating a dollar or three each month you can help fund this podcast, go to sweetselah.org/donations and set up your donation, writing ‘podcast partner’ in the comments. We’d love to meet with you through emails as we connect with our partners in a special way. Until next week, and then even after that, let’s keep watching for Jesus who really is coming again. And it might be soon.

Speaker 1 (30:03):

We are so glad you stopped for a while with us. Sweet Selah Moments is a co-operative production of Word Radio and Sweet Selah Ministries. More information about this Sweet Selah Moments podcast, including show notes, can be found at sweetselah.org and at wordradio.net. Thank you for joining us for Sweet Selah Moments, sweetselah.org.

 

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