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Judgment of Lukewarm Christians

Judgment of Lukewarm Christians

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Published by glennpease
BY THOMAS SCOTT


REVELATION III. 15, 16.

/ know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor
hot ': I would thou wert cold or hot : so then,
because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold
nor hot, I will $pew thee out of my mouth.
BY THOMAS SCOTT


REVELATION III. 15, 16.

/ know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor
hot ': I would thou wert cold or hot : so then,
because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold
nor hot, I will $pew thee out of my mouth.

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Published by: glennpease on May 07, 2014
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JUDGMET OF LUKEWARM CHRISTIASBY THOMAS SCOTTREVELATIO III. 15, 16. / know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot ': I would thou wert cold or hot : so then, because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will $pew thee out of my mouth. This chapter and that which precedes it contain a message from our blessed Saviour to each of the seven churches in Asia ; which in one part or ano- ther suit the state and character of all Christian churches in every age and nation. It is therefore added at the close of each epistle^ ^' He that hath <^ an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto '^ the churches/* The message to the Laodiceans dififers materi- ally fix)m all the rest ; for the professed Christians in that city had degenerated for mwe than any of the others. They were become " lukewarm," yet proud of their imagined proficiency : and the re- proofa, warnings, and counsels of our Lord were adapted to this peculiarity of character and conduct. We know that lukewarm water is exceedingly disagreeable ; the stomach recoils at it, and we spit it out with loathing. Thus Christ declared that he would cast off the church of Laodicea with disdain and abhorrence. There mig^t, however, be some individuals of a better character, though probably infected with the same disease, and others might be brought to repentance. For the
 
REVELATIO III. 15, 16. 239 sake of these, therefore], the message was sait : they were warned, rebuked, counselled, and en- coxiraged ; and we may hope that many derived special benefit. Yet the church at large seems to have degenerated more and more : so that, while those churches which our Lord mentioned with approbation continue in some poor remains to this very day, there has not for a long tune been a single professed Christian at Laodicea ! — I purpose, I. To describe the nature and sjrmptoms of lukewarmness : II. To explain the grounds of that decided ab- horrence of it which Christ expresses : III. To add something by way of solemn warning and particular appUcation. I. We will consider the nature and symptoms of lukewarmness, both in collective bodies, and in individuals professing Christianity. It may here be proper to premise one observa- tion, to prevent mistakes. When our advantages, opportunities, and obligaticms are duly considered, we may all be justly charged with comparative lukewarmness : and the more we become acquaint* ed with ourselves, and experience the power of divine truth upon but hearts, the keener will be our sensibility and the deeper our abasement oil tiiis account. But tiiis case is totally distinct from that of the allowed and self-sufficient lukewarm- ness of the Laodiceahs. The disease of which we speak is only found where some profession of reli^on is made. The iti^Ugious world is not '^ lukewarm.'' Persons of
 
this character may say, ' We make no pretensions ' to piety or sanctity ; we seldom think about re- MO SERMO XI : ^ ligion ; it is a subject that never ^ves us atiy ^ concern/ Then indeed you are not chargeable with lukewarmness : you are clear of that crime : but if you pretend to no religion, what do you pretend to ? Do you profess yourselves children of disobedience and of wrath, and heirs of hell ? Is this your meaning, your character, your expec- tation? For, whatever you may suppose, these things alone belong to those who avow that they disregard God and religion. But leaving such men to their own reflections, we observe tiiat lukewarmness pre-supposes the form and appearance of a church ; and that, pos- sibly, neither very erroneous in doctrine nor cor- rupt in morals. In like manner the lukewarm professed Christian may retain " the form of sound ^^ doctrine,** avoid gross vices, and continue in communion with some religious society : he may even manage so well that no specific charge can be substantiated against him; no foul spot be visible in his character ; no proof brought that he has renounced his profession. He may observe in some measure all the forms of godliness : but he wants the spirit, life, and activity of religion. We cannot say that he is dead : yet he resembles a deeply wounded man, for whom great fears are entertained even while symptoms of life seem dis- cernible. Afinisters, who are conversant with the state of their flocks, generally class people according to their apparent characters, in their private judg-

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