November 04, 2007

Wealth That Overcomes

Revelation 3:18-22

"I counsel you to buy from me ... so you can become rich ..."
Revelation 3:18


Yesterday we took note of the Lord's message to the wealthy church in the ancient city of Laodicea. It's im­por­tant to note, though, that God does not exclude churches or rich people from his kingdom; the Lord counsels everyone simply to focus on the greatness of his generosity.

"Come to me and buy gold refined by fire," he says, in effect. This is God's gracious call to a vital faith that has been purified by testing. Such a faith will make us truly rich. "Come to me and buy dazzling white clothes to wear." When our souls are clothed with deeds done in righteousness in Christ's name, then the nakedness of our shame will be removed. "Come to me for ointment to heal your eyes so you can really see." The anointing of the Holy Spirit will reveal not only our true need for salvation but the boundless grace of Christ as well.

Jesus offers no words of praise for this church. But he does offer a loving call: "Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him, and he with me." What an invitation! What could be more rewarding than to take Christ up on his word? The Savior invites us to win in the struggle with self-indulgence now, and he offers us a seat at his table forever. Let's listen up to "what the Spirit says to the churches."

Spirit of God, help us to listen to what you teach us today so that we may be rich in Christ. We love you for caring so much about us. By your light, help us to see. Amen.

About the author — John Van Schepen

Dr. John Van Schepen is a retired pastor who served churches in Washington, Wisconsin, Indiana, Oregon and California. He and his wife, Willie, have been blessed with five children and several grandchildren.

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