Simply the Bible Blog

Daily Devotion and Podcast

The Road Back Home (Rev 2.5)

“Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent and do the first works, or else I will come to you quickly and remove your lampstand from its place—unless you repent.” (Revelation 2:5, NKJV)

As a youth I was most blessed. I grew up in the Jesus Movement. Saturday nights at the Warehouse meant attending a Christian rock concert with the artists of a generation heavily influenced by music: Keith Green, Randy Stonehill, 2nd Chapter of Acts, and Barry McGuire, to name a few. Electricity was in the air. Potheads were leaving their dope behind and falling in love with Jesus. I knew that I wanted to join in what God was doing.

Likewise, the Ephesians had experienced great movements of God’s Spirit. (Imagine having Paul, Timothy and John as your pastors!) At such times it is difficult not to be swept up into the flow of the Spirit. But the fire of every movement subsides; some people burn out while others cool down. This was happening to the church at Ephesus. Although they were going through the motions of church, they had reached a critical point where their love was waxing cold. If they did not act swiftly, Jesus would remove their lampstand from it place–that is He would remove them from His presence and their corresponding influence in the world.

Jesus told them to do three things:

  • Remember – They needed to remember from where they had fallen: to recall the first-love passion they felt for Jesus in the early days of their salvation.
  • Repent – They needed to repent–that is to turn around and go the opposite way.
  • Redo – They needed to redo the first works that they did in the beginning.

It is so easy for us to drift from what is real. We are subject to the currents of this world and winds of doctrines that have another source other than Christ. At the time we don’t realize just how far we are drifting from shore.

Years ago our family went on vacation to Huntington Beach. We rented a boogie board for Justin who immediately went out to sea. Further and further he drifted in search of the perfect wave. The life guard spotted him and was on the verge of going after him. Finally, Justin looked back and paddled his way to shore.

Have we drifted away from our first love? Have we allowed other things to take us away from our Rock?

  • Remember how you felt when Jesus was all that mattered? Do you recall your passion to hear Him speak to you through His word? Reminisce over the times you rejoiced to simply be used by Him.
  • Repent by turning around and seeing how far you’ve drifted out to sea. It may seem like a long way back, but as soon as you make the first move you have divine assistance, for you  are paddling in His will.
  • Redo those things you did when you first came to Christ. Ask Him to renew your passion for the word and start reading it again. Find a small group Bible study and make yourself accountable to other believers. Begin each day seeking His face and listening to His voice. Ask Him for divine opportunities to share your faith with others.

It’s been said that if the Lord seems distant, guess who moved?

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3 responses to “The Road Back Home (Rev 2.5)”

  1. I think that we can’t appreciate and value how close we are to God unless we experience straying. Unfortunately, human nature doesnt allow for us to appreciate the divine nature all around us until we take our first steps “away”.
    We may think that they are “steps away” from God. But we are not actually distancing ourselves but learning the difficult lessons and experiencing the difficult tests on our path.
    If we are successful, we are able to recognize our location, turn around and steer back to safety and renewed closeness with God. But this time, the love and devotion that we feel will not fade like a first love, but it will endure forever because our understanding has expanded. Repentance then occurs because it comes from the heart, and then we truly appreciate the gift of life and the love of God.

  2. Such a good word, brother –

    Due to the nature we inherited in Adam, our default setting is the old man and the world (and the “things of the world”), and unless we positively exercise ourselves (man’s part) and ask for mercy to be refreshed in our pursuit of Him (God’s part), our love shall indeed wax cold. It is as if there is a spring-loaded toggle switch on our heart that is set to default to “indifference toward God”. Expend no effort and our heart will always naturally remain in this position (thanks to the spring-loading we received in the fall). Therefore, it requires the conscious effort and exercise of our will to “flick the switch”; choose Him, turn to Him, and ask for grace and mercy to be kept by Him.

    We are “swimming upstream” (visions of the Nimbus Fish Hatchery in Orangevale dance in my head…), against the tide of this age and the church’s degradation. Without a constant diet of the Word, prayer, and the fellowship of the Body of Christ, my spiritual condition declines rapidly.

    The Lord’s word to Ephesus is also for us. Ephesus had many commendable items with which the Lord credited them, but none of them, apart from the first/best love, were enough to satisfy Him. The heart is the crucial ground within man.

    Thank you for dispensing the riches today!

  3. To have the Lord warn your city with His removal of it’s lampstand is serious, fearful and shameful thing. I have to ask…
    just how many drifted away members would it take before He says this to our city? I am responsible firstly for my relationship with the Lord. However this letter to the Ephesians was written to
    the leading brothers in Ephesus. They have a greater responsibility… that of presenting every man fullgrown in Christ.
    This points out the fact that to be a responsible person in the church in a city is a serious situation before the Lord. Consider on whom the majority of the responsibility for keeping a lampstand in a city is. The condition of a church has a lot to do with it’s leaders. Sobering fact..isn’t it. This is why the very best leaders
    are constantly shepherding their members into Christ through interecssion PLUS visitation. The word says all members are necessary thus a leader’s (pastors etc.) time must not just be spent with just the strong and healthy ones but even more with the weak and drifting ones. No Saint Left Behind is the Lords way
    and it is His heart. In another sense…WE ALL.. are responsible
    for ourselves and all the members of the Lampstand. Pray for your leaders especially those over a whole city. Thank the Lord that some pastors in Boise have this vision and are meeting together to fellowship and to have prayer summits, and to coordinate together for the building up of the Body of Christ in love
    for Him and for all the members. In this way the lampstand can be secured.

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