Jesus warned and commanded the churches in Revelation 2 and 3. He praised their strengths but held nothing back when telling them to wake up and repent.
“Wake up then, and strengthen what remains that was about to die, because I have not found your deeds complete in the sight of my God. Therefore, remember what you received and heard, and obey it, and repent. If you do not wake up, I will come like a thief, and you will never know at what hour I will come against you” (Revelation 3:2-3 NET).
To wake up means that you get strength in the Lord, that you remember what you received and heard through His Word, you obey it or act on it, and REPENT if your actions are contrary to God and His Word. That is the Wake-Up call. Jesus warned us that if a church doesn’t wake up that He will come as a thief in the night. They won’t know what hit them. It won’t be pretty. I didn’t say that first, Jesus did!
America! It’s Time to Wake Up! Church! It’s Time to Wake Up!
“All those I love, I rebuke and discipline. So be earnest (zealous) and repent.” (Revelation 3:19 NET)
The reason Jesus rebuked and disciplined these churches (Christians) in Revelation chapters two and three was because some were practicing evil things. “All those I love” will get rebuked and disciplined when necessary. Do you mean to tell me that LOVE will rebuke and discipline at times? Jesus loved believers so much that He exposed their sins for all the world to see through rebuke, discipline, and by commanding them to repent.
Repentance was not a suggestion then, and it is not a suggestion now. Love includes discipline, rebuke, and repentance. Get that straight in your thinking. The message of “Jesus loves you” has been watered down so much that if Jesus rebuked or disciplined most folks, they would think it was verbal abuse and completely devoid of love.
Here is a message you will not hear often from pulpits in America:
“Jesus loves you so much that He will rebuke, discipline, and command you to repent?” (My very good paraphrase of Revelation 3:19.)
How much of that do you hear or read on social media or on church websites? How many times have you heard that from the pulpits of the land? If Jesus rebukes and disciplines all those He loves, what is happening with all those that have not heard a rebuke and have not been disciplined by Him through their loving pastors or other loving spiritual people? They are missing out on a very real aspect of the love of Jesus Christ for His church.
This message of repentance is extremely important in the love of Christ. Pastors, ministers, and preachers should love their flock by giving them warnings, and even rebuking them when necessary. Why should we be diligent to rebuke when necessary, to discipline, and lead people to repentance? Let me say it in the words of the apostle who wrote Hebrews (whom I believe was Paul):
And you have forgotten the exhortation which speaks to you as to sons: “My son, do not despise the chastening of the Lord, Nor be discouraged when you are rebuked by Him; 6 For whom the Lord loves He chastens, And scourges every son whom He receives.” If you endure chastening, God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom a father does not chasten? But if you are without chastening, of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate (KJV and others translated “illegitimate” as “bastards”) and not sons. (Hebrews 12:5-8 New King James Version NKJV)
Isn’t that sweet that most modern translations soften the blow by translating “illegitimate” instead of using the harsher word “bastards”? The meaning is the same, but nobody takes kindly to being called a bastard! Illegitimate children were traditionally called bastards, and in the Hebrew language they were called “mamzer”. If somebody called you a mamzer, they were probably looking for a fight! It was an insult to be called a mamzer – bastard just like it is today. The use of bastards in our text was meant to shock the reader, and certainly not sugarcoat anything.
What did the verses above say? If we are not partakers of the Lord’s correction and discipline as children (chastening being the older English word), rebuke, and even scourging (serious spanking that starts in the spirit and only continues to be physical after people consistently refuse to repent), then we would be BASTARDS.
Many churches preach sweet stuff that’s like cotton candy fluff. It’s all puffy marshmallow Christianity. No preaching and teaching are done of the solid meat or food of the Word meant to produce growth. (See Hebrews 5:12-14 in the AMP.) Even the milk of the Word produces some growth, but those churches concentrate on mush that is not fit for spiritual or human consumption! (1 Peter 2:1, 2) If fluffy cotton candy was all you ate in the natural world, you would get very sick and eventually drop dead. Could you imagine what is happening spiritually in some churches that only preach cotton candy and marshmallow Christianity? They are developing bastard children, and not real sons and daughters received by the Father. Is that something I came up with, or did Paul teach that in his epistles? We saw it in Hebrews, but where else do we see that expressed?
Do not be unequally bound together with unbelievers [do not make mismatched alliances with them, inconsistent with your faith]. For what partnership can righteousness have with lawlessness? Or what fellowship can light have with darkness? What harmony can there be between Christ and Belial (Satan)? Or what does a believer have in common with an unbeliever? What agreement is there between the temple of God and idols? For we are the temple of the living God; just as God said: “I WILL DWELL AMONG THEM AND WALK AMONG THEM; AND I WILL BE THEIR GOD, AND THEY SHALL BE MY PEOPLE. “So COME OUT FROM AMONG UNBELIEVERS AND BE SEPARATE,” says the Lord, “AND DO NOT TOUCH WHAT IS UNCLEAN; And I will graciously receive you and welcome you [with favor], And I will be a Father to you, And you will be My sons and daughters,” Says the Lord Almighty. (2 Corinthians 6:14-18 Amplified Bible- AMP)
That entire portion of Scripture speaks to what I am writing to you about. God is interested in developing believers into sons and daughters of God that will take a stand against being bound to an alliance with unbelievers, partnering with lawlessness, fellowshipping with darkness, and agreeing with Satan! He is actively looking for believers that reject unbelieving ways and all idols! God is looking for those that will live separated from the junk of the world and refuse to touch the unclean trash heap of the world, the flesh, and the devil!
Do not love the world [of sin that opposes God and His precepts], nor the things that are in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world—the lust and sensual craving of the flesh and the lust and longing of the eyes and the boastful pride of life [pretentious confidence in one’s resources or in the stability of earthly things]—these do not come from the Father, but are from the world. The world is passing away, and with it its lusts [the shameful pursuits and ungodly longings]; but the one who does the will of God and carries out His purposes lives forever. (1 John 2:15-17 AMP)
The Father is looking to receive graciously into power and anointing sons and daughters and not bastard children that want to do whatever the world does and whatever the devil wants, but that will only seek to do the will of the Father.
The above is why Hebrews goes on to teach that discipline, rebuke, and even some serious spanking are completely necessary for spiritual growth into sons and daughters of God that want to be used by Him to shake their world.
Moreover, we have had earthly fathers who disciplined us, and we submitted and respected them [for training us]; shall we not much more willingly submit to the Father of spirits, and live [by learning from His discipline]? For our earthly fathers disciplined us for only a short time as seemed best to them; but He disciplines us for our good, so that we may share His holiness. For the time being no discipline brings joy, but seems sad and painful; yet to those who have been trained by it, afterwards it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness [right standing with God and a lifestyle and attitude that seeks conformity to God’s will and purpose]. (Hebrew 12:9-11 Amplified)
Others preach the Word concerning salvation, blessing, healing, deliverance, or some variation of it, without bringing correction and rebuke when necessary. That is not right and missing a very important part of ministry to the people. Part of ministering and preaching God’s word is discipline and rebuke (2 Timothy 4:2).
Some say they are preaching only “encouraging” or messages of “hope” to their congregations. Somebody said to me once to preach "heaven" to the people. Sorry to burst your bubble, but that is not enough. “Hope” preaching without this necessary element of discipline, spiritual spanking, warnings, and repentance is deficient and needs an “iron” supplement in the Spirit, because it is an anemic message. Jesus will rebuke and discipline you because He loves you, therefore, be zealous and repent! (Revelation 3:19) That is tough love, but it is necessary.
God help us learn that sometimes the love of Christ will demand rebuke, correction, spanking (that could get very physical when there is a refusal to repent), and heart-felt repentance that is demonstrated in real actions that are accord with repentance! (See Acts 26:20 AMP.)
What should be our response? Say it and believe it, “Jesus loves me, so I receive His rebuke and discipline.” The rejection of that makes a person a real dumb-dumb. I am being nice about it. Proverbs cuts through the chase.
Whoever loves discipline loves knowledge, but he who hates reproof (1) is stupid. (Proverbs 12:1 NET)
Jesus loves me, this I know, so I love discipline and true knowledge because I do not want to be like those that hate reproof and get stuck on stupid! As my Puerto Rico born, but staunchly American dad used to say about right here in old KJV English, “How readest thou?”
Wait a minute. What is “knowledge” according to the Scripture? Is “knowledge” profound revelation, revelation knowledge, penetrating insight, or deep understanding? Though those may be a part of it, knowledge refers to knowing God AND serving Him. Those that have knowledge of God forsake idolatry, immorality, and all that violates God’s moral commandments. Read the first six chapters of Proverbs to see that clearly taught. The Hebrew language always understood “knowledge of God”, not as revelation or understanding alone, but as living for Him according to His Word-commandments. In other words, you know Him when you obey Him. Those that disobey Him and follow the world’s ways and practices don’t know Him, even though they call themselves Christians.
The Apostle John taught that truth.
Now by this we know that we know Him, if we keep His commandments. He who says, “I know Him,” and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But whoever keeps His word, truly the love of God is perfected in him. By this we know that we are in Him. He who says he abides in Him ought himself also to walk just as He walked. (1 John 2:3-6 NKJV)
THAT should be clear enough!
In these podcasts, we focus on national repentance, but there are truths here applicable to our personal lives. National repentance will not happen without individual repentance.
Though the USA is seeing better days under Trump than under the perverted and ungodly-to-the-max Obama administration, there is a long way to go. Under Obama, we saw the exaltation of homosexuality (LGBT and all its demonic offspring like same-sex marriage), the continued and increasing murder of unborn children (abortion), the embracing of false religion (Islam), and the condemnation and demonization of Christianity and Christians. We see in America a great divide between believers and unbelievers, and a strong distinction appearing and solidifying between the world and its sinful ways and those that love God, His Word, and His son Jesus. This divided kingdom business is a recipe for disaster (Matthew 12:25), but one that that can be mitigated, and even turned around through individual repentance and a call to national repentance. (Remember what we saw in the previous articles and podcasts according to 2 Chronicles 7:13, 14, Jeremiah 18:7-12, and Nineveh in Jonah 3.) These are crucial to America’s survival, so our country can once again becomes ONE NATION UNDER GOD, and it begins to truly thrive.
What are we up against?
The mainstream media has become a vehicle for heathenism. They have become proponents of all that is contrary to God and His Word. They target Christianity and Christians and attempt to make them look foolish and bigoted. Sadly, on many fronts they have succeeded in their endeavor to make Christianity looks like something to be despised and rejected. They are the main false prophets of our day just like Jeremiah faced in his day. Make no mistake about it, they are on their way to their own destruction. They are like the false prophets that Jeremiah prophesied about that would be dead before long. Their fake news outlets are falling apart even now.
Social media sites have followed the MSM example and are doing everything they can do to stop the spread of Christian thought, morality, and teaching. They have wholeheartedly embraced demon-inspired people and activities that are morally reprehensible. They are in line with the false prophets. Additionally, there are the horrifyingly false prophetic voices coming from most Hollywood actors and actresses, acclaimed singers, and other foolish people in entertainment and sports that are trying to tell the world how to live according to their ungodliness. Well, if you want to go to a devil’s hell, then follow their advice and live according to their perverted ways. If you want to go to Heaven, then receive God’s gift in Jesus and live for the Lord EVERY day! (John 3:16)
So, what do we do as Christians? Do we bow down to the world, the devil, and to his false prophets? Do we cower and surrender? NO way! We continue teaching, preaching, and ministering under the anointing of the Holy Spirit. People’s eternal destinies depend on our never giving up. We don’t quit, and we don’t compromise the Word. We don’t water down the gospel of repentance and forgiveness. We preach and declare uncompromisingly as Jesus did, “Repent and believe the gospel”, and “repent or perish!” That is the true wake-up call of Jesus to the churches today.
Wake up church! Wake up America!
Get more in Part 4 podcast about repentance. Be mightily and overwhelmingly blessed!
(1) Brown, Driver, Briggs: correction, rebuke, chiding, chastisement, etc. See Strong’s H8433b for definition of this word “reproof.”