“Wake up, and strengthen what remains and is about to die, for I have not found your works complete in the sight of my God. Remember, then, what you received and heard. Keep it, and repent. If you will not wake up, I will come like a thief, and you will not know at what hour I will come against you. Yet you have still a few names in Sardis, people who have not soiled their garments, and they will walk with me in white, for they are worthy. The one who conquers will be clothed thus in white garments, and I will never blot his name out of the book of life. I will confess his name before my Father and before his angels. He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.” Revelation 3:2-6
In this passage, Jesus is commanding the church of Sardis to wake up. The church of Sardis had a reputation of being alive as a church, or in other words, a thriving church. Unfortunately, the church was “dead” inside. Because of its reputation, the church was very complacent. Jesus was sending word and urgency to remind them of this and to “wake up.”
How many times can we, as the body of Christ, find ourselves walking with the façade, the reputations we have gained in church, when inside we are completely hollow. This is why we have such a loving Father! As it says in verse 3, “If you will not wake up, I will come like a thief, and you will not know at what hour I will come against you.” He says this in an urgent way to warn His people and to love them as a good Father should. We need to remember what foundation we are planted on. He does this to show us that there is more to this “Christian” walk than a pretend smile and a hollow heart.
Ephesians 5:13-16 says, “But when anything is exposed by the light, it becomes visible, for anything that becomes visible is light. Therefore it says, ‘Awake, O sleeper, and arise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you.’ Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time, because the days are evil.” Paul is talking here about how Christians should live out their faith rather than imitating the world. We, as a church, can operate with learned cultures and so many boundaries, but God just simply wants us to go back to the basics. When we walk around with the “We have already tried it that way” or this “stuck” mentality, we close off the opportunities that could be right in front of us. We then are just like the church of Sardis becoming complacent and prideful.
God simply is stating that there is devastation when we are not obedient and open to His ways. We all have different journeys and circumstances, but at the end of the day, we all serve the same God. His command is to love Him and love His people.
John 15:12 says, “This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.” When we walk around with pride and cannot seem to listen to the wise, we become lost. It is time to wake up church! Jesus died for us that we may be made whole. Let down the pride and allow God to remold and shape the church within.
“Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” Matthew 11:28