Dear Friends of "Dial Daily Bread,"
The apostle John was an old man when he wrote the Fourth Gospel. From his perspective of many years he discerned the outworking of a mysterious principle of enmity against God which had embedded itself in the leadership of the one true church. Until the rejection and crucifixion of Christ, it was the one true church in the world. Jesus had said, “Salvation is of the Jews” (John 4:22).
But in John’s gospel he details the development of that deep and bitter enmity that progressively possessed the hearts of those “men of God” until they screamed “Crucify Him!” in Pilate’s judgment court that fateful Friday morning.
The aged John is also the author of the Book of Revelation in which he speaks of a true church in the last days of earth’s history, which is distinguished before the world as the “remnant church” which keeps the commandments of God and has the faith of Jesus (12:17; 14:12).
John also reports the Lord Jesus as deeply disturbed about the leadership of that same church because they arrogantly claim to be “rich and increased with goods” when in reality they lead the “seven churches” of history in pitiable ignorance of their true spiritual state: “You ... do not know that you are [the one, Greek] wretched, miserable, poor, blind, and naked” (3:14-21).
The true church leadership two millennia ago led their people to reject the Messiah whom God had sent to them; that Laodicean leadership in the last days can lead the true church again to repeat the sin of the ancient Jews by rejecting the Loud Cry message that God sends them to “lighten the earth with glory.” It’s Revelation 18:1-4 thrown into reverse gear. Instead of “lighten the earth” they can hold the message back for generation after generation while the world degenerates.
There is a blessed solution: “Be zealous, therefore, and repent,” an invitation from the “faithful and true witness” (3:19, 14).
--Robert J. Wieland
From the "Dial Daily Bread" Archive: April 5, 2007.
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