Laodicea is the last stage of the church age before the Rapture.
We live in that day.
If it is not that day that I am distressed because could this form of Christianity get worse? God help us if it does. It is at an all time spiritual low like I have never seen.
No wonder he tells this church to, “be zealous…and repent.” (Rev 3:19).
Jesus teaches that there are three spiritual states: the cold, the lukewarm and the hot. It is important to determine what condition they each indicate, in order to not interpret this passage incorrectly. One thing is clear: these three conditions of spiritual life relate to the church not the world.
It is easy to see what the term hot means. It is a state of spiritual intensity, passion and enthusiasm. It is a heart on fire for God and is filled and floats with the joy of God’s love and presence.
Christ hates lukewarmness. It is obnoxious and an abomination to him. When a person is Lukewarm the state of their heart has no zeal. They have no forward motion.
They are stagnant.
They may go to church but they would not know self-denial if it bit them in their blessed assurance. They do not fast, they do not pray or read their Bible. They do not strain, stretch or exert any spiritual muscles. There is no self-denial that costs them anything. There is no cross bearing for them, they never get a splinter. They feel no need to be a witness to others about Christ. They are vapid, bland and innocuous.
The old preachers used to say the devil does not even bother them because they are no threat to him at all.
But what is it to be to be cold? Does it indicate a state of corruption, wickedness or being an unbeliever. That is ridiculous. It is repulsive to think that our Lord Jesus would wish that anyone would be like this! “No state can be more offensive to Christ then that of the sinner in open rebellion and his heart filled with every evil.” (Smith) It says of Christ, “Thou hast loved righteousness, and hated iniquity.” (Heb. 1:9).
Heat and cold are preferable to lukewarmness. They will be rejected if they are not hot or cold.
But what kind of spiritual state is indicated by the term cold? Cold would seem to be a spiritual condition where a person realizes that they are spiritually destitute. They realize that they are “wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked.” (Rev. 3:17) and they long to recover what they have lost!
The lukewarm are content where they are.
But the “cold” are alarmed that they are spiritually unfit, and seek to be restored. The Lukewarm person feels they don’t need any restoration and are just fine.
So it is easy to see why Christ prefers to see his church in a state would not be comforted, because they are not where they should be. You can’t stay cold long.
Cold people will seek out heat.
The lukewarm person is in great danger until Christ finally has to reject them as nauseatingly loathsome.