Your Spiritual Riches – Do They Include Love?

“Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked:” (Revelation 3:17)

Do you know the love that produces true devoted love and divine unity among God’s people. It is not accomplished by human religious governments and ecumenical movements. This love is from God himself! This love draws no lines with God, but is willing to suffer the loss of all for Jesus sake, his works sake, and his church’s sake.

Remember the rich man who sought Jesus? He obeyed and pleased God (like many around the true church of God,) and the scripture says Jesus loved him, yet there was a limit to this rich man’s love for Jesus. But the limit was not known – until Jesus, knowing what was very important to him, required that very thing of him:

“And when he was gone forth into the way, there came one running, and kneeled to him, and asked him, Good Master, what shall I do that I may inherit eternal life? And Jesus said unto him, Why callest thou me good? there is none good but one, that is, God. Thou knowest the commandments, Do not commit adultery, Do not kill, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Defraud not, Honour thy father and mother. And he answered and said unto him, Master, all these have I observed from my youth. Then Jesus beholding him loved him, and said unto him, One thing thou lackest: go thy way, sell whatsoever thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come, take up the cross, and follow me. And he was sad at that saying, and went away grieved: for he had great possessions. And Jesus looked round about, and saith unto his disciples, How hardly shall they that have riches enter into the kingdom of God! And the disciples were astonished at his words. But Jesus answereth again, and saith unto them, Children, how hard is it for them that trust in riches to enter into the kingdom of God! It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God. And they were astonished out of measure, saying among themselves, Who then can be saved? And Jesus looking upon them saith, With men it is impossible, but not with God: for with God all things are possible. Then Peter began to say unto him, Lo, we have left all, and have followed thee. And Jesus answered and said, Verily I say unto you, There is no man that hath left house, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my sake, and the gospel’s, But he shall receive an hundredfold now in this time, houses, and brethren, and sisters, and mothers, and children, and lands, with persecutions; and in the world to come eternal life. But many that are first shall be last; and the last first.” (Mark 10:17-31)

It was by the unwillingness of the rich man to meet Jesus’ requirement that he essentially became “spewed out” and spiritually very poor. And now consider the very drastic condition in Laodicea, believing that you are way beyond any needs, and yet your real spiritual condition is exactly the opposite!

“Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked:” (Revelation 3:17)

What a rude awakening to the reality you had been believing the opposite of what is true, and that yet, right around the true church of God! Yet it is the mercy of God to awaken people to this reality. And this is the reason the Revelation message needs to be preached in all its fullness, by the Spirit of God.

Jesus tells it like it is – and the words are very plain and cutting. “Wretched” he says. The word denotes a most low condition that requires deliverance! The Apostle Paul used this very word to describe his religious condition prior to being saved!

“For I delight in the law of God after the inward man: But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members. O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?” (Romans 7:22-24)

Could it be that around where the truth is preached and lived that you can get into a place that you have become “wretched”?

Jesus also said they were actually “miserable.” The Apostle Paul used this same word to describe what it would be like for Christians if there was no hope of an eternal reward!

“If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable.” (I Cor 15:19)

Again, Jesus said that they “knowest not that thou art… …poor…” Poor – implies that spiritually they have very little. Yet they believed they were spiritually rich! How can this be?

“A poor man that oppresseth the poor is like a sweeping rain which leaveth no food.” (Prov 28:3)

Has the message to the lost become nothing more than judgment without a corresponding show of compassion and mercy? Does our heart earnestly yearn and reach out to the lost? Has our “defense the gospel” become nothing more than oppression for the lost with no love and long-suffering for their needs of nurturing and compassion? Many oppressed in sin have been abused and betrayed by those who should have loved them; and often this happened while they were a child. Sometimes their parents oppressed them with religious judgment right as they were abusing them. Are these poor confused souls able to see something different in us. Do we have to love and long-suffering with their mental weaknesses to be able to show compassion on them so we can go the distance to instruct them while we comfort them? Do we have the patience to long-suffer with their mistrust, so that we may gain their trust?

Does your spiritual riches include the sacrificial love of God?

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