We are currently in the middle of a seven-week series of messages from the book of Revelation titled 7even Churches and Me. Of all the series we have received over the course of this year, this stands at the top of the list as my favorite. It is causing all of us to reflect on the spirit of the people in a time long before now and review our own life in relationship to theirs. It is revealing to understand how similar we are even though so many centuries of time separate us.
As is always the case, I hope each of you are drawing from each sermon whatever is present in it that will grow you enabling you to become a mature son of Yahweh. Our future and every generation after us are depending on us to correct what needs to be corrected by changing now for God’s glory. The vision John saw and wrote about in Revelation is perpetual through every generation, which means it has no end. It is as relevant to you and me today as it was to him so long ago. This article reflects on the church of Ephesus.
The church of Ephesus in Revelation 2 is a picture of so many of us.
“‘I know your works, your toil and your patient endurance, and how you cannot bear evil men but have tested those who call themselves apostles but are not and found them to be false; 3 I know you are enduring patiently and bearing up for my name’s sake, and you have not grown weary. 4 But I have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first.” Revelation 2:2-4 English Standard Version
They loved the truth but lacked grace. He said to the Ephesians he loved how they embraced the truth, but he had one thing against them, they didn’t have grace. Yahweh wants all of us to come to the place where we not only love what he loves, but we also love like he loves. Truth without grace is as useless as grace without truth. There must be a balance between them, so there can be reconciliation in the one receiving them. Some of us find it easy to operate in excessive truth (hard to believe that is possible) and others find it easy to operate in excessive grace (a willingness to overlook truth). Whichever one you might be, taking an honest inventory of how you position yourself in life will allow you to endure yourself to the true reflection of Christ which possesses both truth and grace with equal measure.
Above all else, knowing Yahweh is pleased about how we represent him should drive every decision we make and how we live our lives. Press in so that your uncomfortable places in him become comfortable and your hidden places are revealed. Be open to his anointing and truth so that you can live with a grace that causes the truth to become life.