A 2009 Barna Group survey found that 81% of those identifying
themselves as Christians agreed that spiritual maturity
is "trying hard to follow the rules described in
the Bible." This is heartbreaking and unbiblical.
Jesus came to set us free from the Law so that we could
experience His love and share that love with each other
and the world.
Jesus said it is by loving each other that His followers
would be known (John 13:34), not by how well we follow
rules. He even rebuked the Ephesian church for following
rules so closely they had forgotten to love Him (Rev
2:4). And the church in Laodicea had replaced love with
riches, becoming lukewarm. They thought of themselves
as rich but Jesus described them as "wretched,
pitiful, poor, blind and naked" (Rev 3:17).
As I read about the ways Christians described themselves
and how others view us, as well as what I saw in the
Bible, I was heartbroken over the American church. Love
has been replaced by rules and riches. We have forsaken
our first love and now we follow rules and spend millions
on our buildings and programs and advertising. Without
love the Church is nothing (1 Cor 13:1, 2 &3). Jesus
only gave us one Law, to love each other (John 13:34).
By forgetting this, we have become lukewarm and irrelevant.
How could I not be heartbroken?
But I also realized that there is hope because Jesus
hasn't forsaken us and we're still here. There's more
to be done and I don't believe that followers of Jesus
want to be lukewarm, we just don't know any better at
the moment. After rebuking the Laodiceans, Jesus said
that He is standing at the door, knocking, waiting and
hoping that people will hear Him and open that door
so He can come and have a relationship with them (that's
what eating with someone meant back then, relationship)
People everywhere are responding to that knock, in
denominational churches and non-denominational ones.
They want to be on fire and have a relationship
with Jesus. Jesus Is Knocking was the dream that God
placed in my heart as I answered the door and sat down
to eat with Jesus.
Through involvement with Jesus Is Knocking, people
will open the door and Jesus will come in and eat with
them. Their hearts will be reignited with His love and
more love will be shared between His followers. As Christ's
love grows among His followers, others will be drawn
into that love, just as Luke recorded in Acts.
It's time to experience Christ's love and riches rather
than the imitations we're used to. It's time to share
Christ's love and riches with each other. It's time
to show Christ's love and riches to a hurting and dying
It's time to open the door and stop being lukewarm.