Sunday, July 11, 2010

Letters from Revelations

Our church started a new series last week called "Straight Talk From the Heart of God".  It's a series based on the letters to the seven churches in Asia from Jesus, as told to John by Jesus.  The first sermon in the series, titled "When the Spark Goes Out" The Message to the Church at Ephesus, spoke of something that is a hard subject to swallow: Leaving your first love.

The basic premise of this particular part of Revelation 2 is that the church of Ephesus was a very successful church, a church that was hard working, a church that persevered, a church that tested what was said by those claiming to be apostles and then calling them out when they were trying to lead people astray.  This is a church that persevered for Jesus' name!  But with all of this success, they had left behind the one thing that had defined them at the very beginning: their love for Christ.  They were not doing the deeds they did at the beginning.  They were not showing the love of Christ to those around them, nor it seems that they were showing their love of Jesus to Jesus.  They had become a loveless church.

I am still thinking on that sermon, and thinking that it applies to me today.  I keep wondering if I have left my first love.  I look at what I was doing when I was first saved and I know that I am not doing those things.  I would study daily, seeking God's guidance in His word and today I am starved for time to do even the simplest things it seems.  I attended church regularly which I still do today, but I seem to go and listen and learn, but I feel like I could be doing so much more!  Have I left my first love, that love I felt when I first surrendered to Christ all those years ago?  Yes, I think I have and it shames me to say so.
But there is still hope and Jesus shows that hope to both the church at Ephesus and to me and you who might be in this same situation!  Jesus says:

'Therefore remember from where you have fallen, and repent and do the deeds you did at first; or else I am coming to you and will remove your lampstand out of its place--unless you repent.  (Rev 2:5 NASB emphasis mine)
 Remember from where you have fallen.  What did you do at the beginning, when you were first saved?  Repent from this moving away from, this falling away from your first love!  Do what you did at the beginning and show the world that it is Christ that you love! 

 And Jesus gives a wonderful promise to those who overcome.  The promise is the chance to eat from the Tree of Life. 

So what are you waiting for?  If you have left that first love, as hard as that is to admit, then repent and turn back to what you did when you first met and surrendered to Christ!  You will not be sorry.



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