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It is Dangerous to be Spiritually Asleep

Revelation 3:2 “Wake up! Strengthen what remains and is about to die, for I have not found your deeds complete in the sight of my God” (NIV).

John the Revelator was tasked with the noble duty of writing the word of God to the seven churches in Asia Minor in Revelation chapter 2 and 3. Each church had unique characteristics, and the Lord was intimately acquainted with the strengths, struggles, and challenges of each. The Lord had a unique message of counsel, exhortation, and encouragement for every congregation. The same way the Lord knew the secrets of each congregation in the first-century church, Jesus knows each believer intimately. He knows us better than we will ever know ourselves.

The church in Sardis, to which the verse quoted above was directed, was asleep. And so the Lord cautions them to arise before it is too late. The will of God is that believers would be alive, alert, and vigilant (1 Peter 5:8). The life of faith is a battlefield, and as disciples of Christ, we cannot afford to put our guard down because we are pitted against a ferocious enemy who wants to devour us. The devil is roaming about like a roaring lion, and we had better take caution.

The spiritual sleep in Revelation is the sad situation of so many people in the church today. Many believers have lost that vital connection with the vine. They are in a deep slumber and cannot sense the move of God because their spiritual senses are dull and numb.

Such people can rightfully be referred to as submarine Christians. From Monday to Saturday, believers who are asleep behave like the world. They engage in all other forms of sin, and they defy the voice of the Holy Spirit as well as that of their conscience that warns them against indulging in sin. They engage in all kinds of imaginable and unimaginable sins without batting an eyelid. Prayer is a strange thing to them, and they are weak and wanting in many of the disciplines Jesus teaches His followers.

Come Sunday morning; such characters emerge in church and land on the altar. They say all the nice things Christians say and shout many hallelujahs. They put on a show of piety that could deceive angels if that were possible.

My point here is not to discourage worship but to fight against rampant hypocrisy and spiritual slumber. The moment we lose our connection with Christ, we become fruitless and unhelpful in the kingdom of God. Like the church in Sardis that risked judgment because of their spiritual slumber, believers expose themselves to danger when they sleep when they should be alert and watchful.

We should not have the historical accounts of people and churches who made mistakes in their walk of faith and then repeat them as people who are not wise. As Apostle Paul tells us in 1 Corinthians 10:11, the things that are recorded in Scripture happened for our admonition so that we do not follow the path of evil and disobedience that so many have followed in the past and ended in destruction.

The Lord is now calling those who are asleep, weak, and discouraged to wake up! This is not the time to be wishy-washy and wavering in faith but a time to strengthen what is weak in us so that our lives may bring glory to the Lord.

 

Prayer: May the Lord wake us up and strengthen all our weak areas in Jesus name!

Written by Samuel Ndung’u
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