Wednesday February 24, 2021
Today’s Scripture: Revelation 2:1-7
“Write this letter to the angel of the church in Ephesus. This is the message from the one who holds the seven stars in his right hand, the one who walks among the seven gold lampstands:
2 “I know all the things you do. I have seen your hard work and your patient endurance. I know you don’t tolerate evil people. You have examined the claims of those who say they are apostles but are not. You have discovered they are liars. 3 You have patiently suffered for me without quitting.
4 “But I have this complaint against you. You don’t love me or each other as you did at first! 5 Look how far you have fallen! Turn back to me and do the works you did at first. If you don’t repent, I will come and remove your lampstand from its place among the churches. 6 But this is in your favor: You hate the evil deeds of the Nicolaitans, just as I do.
7 “Anyone with ears to hear must listen to the Spirit and understand what he is saying to the churches. To everyone who is victorious I will give fruit from the tree of life in the paradise of God.
As a child of the 80’s I was a huge fan of the movie “Top Gun”. As you might know, there is a scene in that movie where Tom Cruz and Anthony Edwards find a girl in a crowded bar and start singing “You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feeling” to her. My friends and I all thought it was the ultimate pick-up move. Of course, looking back on it the whole move was kinda creepy and sexist – but that’s a discussion for another time!
For some reason I start singing that song every time I read John’s letter to the church in Ephesus found in Revelation. You see, the church had “lost that loving feeling”. They seemed to have had it at one point in time – but now their first love does not register. Jesus, speaking through John, is begging them to repent and come back to the way things were in the beginning. Otherwise, their mission and ministry would be compromised, and they might not even be a church anymore.
We all have ups and downs in our spiritual lives – that’s to be expected. But I wonder if we ever look back on our lives and notice that we’ve fallen out of love with God? I think it happens more often than we admit.
Reading this letter to the church in Ephesus should prompt us examine the relationship. It should cause us to look closely at where we are with God and where we have been. But rather than push us to depression or to just give up on faith altogether – it should build in us a desire to get back to the way things were.
The season of Lent is about God inviting us back to our first love. The question is – are we going to accept the invitation and return?
This Week’s Immerse Passages:
Week 8, Feb. 22-28: John, 1-3 John, Revelation
Day 36 pp. 424-437 Joh 13:1-21:25
Day 37 pp. 439-452 1 Jo 1:1-5:21; 2 Jo 1:1-13; 3 Jo 1:1-15
Day 38 pp. 453-459 Rev 1:1-3:22
Day 39 pp. 460-471 Rev 4:1-14:20
Day 40 pp. 471-482 Rev 15:1-22:21