January 25, 2021

Checking Your Spiritual Temperature

I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot; I wish that you were cold or hot. So because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of My mouth.Revelation 3:15–16


Today’s passage contains one of the most sobering truths of Scripture, “I know your deeds.” Jesus measured the spiritual temperature of these believers by their actions. Although they hadn’t grown cold to the Lord (Matthew 24:12), their hearts were no longer on fire for Him (Luke 24:32). In other words, they were just room temperature. Acclimating to the world’s spiritual complacency doesn’t happen overnight, but over time.


The road to becoming a lukewarm Christian starts with being careless. We stop giving serious thought to what we do or how we do it. Worse yet, it’s living as if Jesus isn’t concerned about it either. James warns about this kind of casual Christianity. “But prove yourselves doers of the word, and not merely hearers who delude themselves” (James 1:22). So, not acting on what we read in Scripture or hear in church is a form of self-deception.


Once our thoughts become deluded we no longer reason according to the truth of God’s Word or by the enlightenment of the Holy Spirit. Instead, we rely on our own reasoning. Again, Scripture throws up a warning flag. “It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing; the words that I have spoken to you are spirit and are life” (John 6:63).


Careless, delusional Christians lack godly discernment. Consequently, the difference between good and evil starts getting blurry. Our spiritual temperature goes down as we get more comfortable in the world. We start to struggle with right and wrong choices, companions, and conversations. At this point, we’re of no use to Jesus or to His Kingdom. The description of being “spit out implies His distaste for such believers.  


Since a lukewarm Christian life is unacceptable to a holy God, it should also be unacceptable to us, as His followers. We may be able to fool other people, and we can even fool ourselves. But we’ll never fool the One who knows every thought and deed.


What’s your spiritual temperature? Have you gotten careless in your walk with Christ? Watch out! Coddling even one area of disobedience is the path to a lukewarm life. Maintaining a heart that burns hot for God requires the same careful attention as tending a fire. So stoke those embers back into flame today, before your heart becomes cold to the things of God.