Rev.3:17- Because you say, “I am rich, and have become wealthy, and have need of nothing,” and you do not know that you are wretched and miserable and poor and blind and naked,
This verse is terrifying to me. Is it possible that the church has lost its authority and ability to prophesy to this generation because we have become like it? I often think of something Dick Mills said to me during the renewal that happened in our church in 1994. He had just walked a few steps into the meeting when he turned to me and said this was the same anointing he had felt in his youth at Angeles Temple with Aimee Semple McPherson. Brother Mills said that the anointing that had come out of the Azusa Street Revival had continued in many churches for thirty years. He said it lifted when the churches got tired of being criticized for being different. Sadly, that is what we are experiencing today. Ashamed of the power of His presence, many have been consumed by the spirit of this age. Here are some thoughts from Craig Koester about this present predicament.
“Very much the same way one can boil a frog by placing it in cold water and then turning on the heat, so the church, which of necessity must be in the world, at the same time is constantly, and often quite unwittingly, in danger of becoming like the world in which it is situated. This has been especially true of Western Christendom, and especially so in times of plenty, when the church tends to enjoy the same “upward mobility” experienced by the majority of the middle class, as they try to emulate the wealthy. The upshot of such assimilation is that the church has rather totally lost its prophetic voice, calling out God’s coming judgments on the world to which it has so easily accommodated itself. At this point we must once again prophesy to the world, not simply to change the world, but to keep it from changing us.”
So what is our response? How do we return to our first love and stay separate from the world? This is what Jesus said in the same passage Rev.3:20 – ‘Behold, I stand at the door and knock; if anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and will dine with him, and he with Me.’ Jesus is asking His church to open its heart for His passion once again. Only then will we have the moral authority to prophesy to this generation.