May 23, 2022 – Monday
Revelation 2:3 NIV
3 Remember, therefore, what you have received and heard; hold it fast, and repent. But if you do not wake up, I will come like a thief, and you will not know at what time I will come to you.
Returning to Revelation, today we have Jesus addressing the church in Sardis with which He is very unhappy. Consider verses 1b-2 that precede our verse for today, 1b I know your deeds; you have a reputation of being alive, but you are dead. 2 Wake up! Strengthen what remains and is about to die, for I have found your deeds unfinished in the sight of my God.
Now we do not know the actual deeds of the church of Sardis, but they have a façade, a reputation they seem to hope will cover up their deeds, whatever they are. They are clearly fooling most of the people, but they are surely not fooling Jesus. The church was once spiritually alive, but now spiritually dead, living off stories of how alive it used to be. Jesus is telling them to Wake up! For whatever reason, they have left their deeds unfinished, they have not finished their race as it were. They are not able to say about themselves what Paul wrote to Timothy in 2 Timothy 4:7, 7 I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.
What might the deeds they have left unfinished be? Again, we are not told, but once again Paul gives us his answer on what they might be in Act 20:24 where he wrote, 24 However, I consider my life worth nothing to me; my only aim is to finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me—the task of testifying to the good news of God’s grace. For this or whatever it is Jesus expects (wants) them to repent or wake up, and if they do not, Jesus will come like a thief, and you will not know at what time I will come to you. If they wait too long to wake up, it will simply be too late, and judgment will come.
All of this makes me think of Matthew 7:22-23, 22 Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ 23 Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’ There will be those playing at being a follower of Christ and only playing or pretending. He will be able to tell them from His real followers.
Even in the church of Sardis, there will be people who are His real followers. Of them He says in verse four, 4 Yet you have a few people in Sardis who have not soiled their clothes. They will walk with me, dressed in white, for they are worthy. There are some who will finish the race proclaiming the Good News of Jesus Christ.
Bottom Line: Were you once zealous for Jesus, but now just drifting along, effectively dead in the faith. If that is you, Jesus has two words for you, Wake up! Do just that and finish the race while keeping the faith.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, Help us to stay awake, spiritually alive, worshipping You and Your Son, while we list4en to the Holy Spirit day in and day out. – In Jesus’ Name. Amen.
Riley D. Driver – Pastor
Calvary Chapel of Dayton