Summary: Don’t be taken in by last days deceptions.
There is no way any informed Christian can deny the fact that Jesus is coming soon. Those who follow the teachings of Hal Lindsay, the Lalonde brothers, Dave Breeze and others are excited as they hear the reports of prophetic scripture being fulfilled.
For those who don’t keep up with current events as it pertains to prophecy, Jesus gives us signs within the Church that will come to pass before He raptures His remnant.
According to Jesus’ message to the Laodicean Church, they had been led astray. Deceived by the messages of the last days false prophets. Satan had changed and distorted their perception of Christian service, righteousness, salvation etc. Their focus and vision had been turned inward rather than outward as Christ had commissioned it two thousand years earlier.
Rather than being an extension of the arm of Christ by going out into the highways and hedges compelling the lost into the kingdom of God, many church members are consumed with coming to the house of God for what they can receive for themselves. While others are satisfied only to fulfill some religious obligation in attending church, never allowing the Word of God to convict and change their life.
"I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would that thou wert cold or hot. So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spew thee out of my mouth. Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked:" (Revelation 3:15-17)
This deadly indictment is directed at the Church of our generation. Many within the Body of Christ who recognize our spiritual peril, cry out to God in repentance, daily petitioning Him for revival. Others, continue to plummet headlong into the spiritual destruction offered by this institution of self-righteousness and self-satisfaction.
The Laodicean church has turned indifferent. Not to our own presupposed spirituality, but indifferent to the truth. Satisfied with our own brand of religion. A spiritual life without the Spirit. Although many speak of Him, many don’t really know Him. Nor do they acknowledge His true purpose for being sent to Jesus’ church.
Jesus labeled them lukewarm. I believe the key to their condition is found in that label. Many have thought lukewarm Christians could best be defined as those who were once hot but now have lost their zeal or "fire". But it goes deeper than that. Lukewarmness is not so much cooling down, but rather a mixture of hot and cold. A dangerous mixture producing deadly compromise. This is the condition of the Laodicean church and much of our church this century. It has caused us to become unsuccessful in fulfilling the desires and direction of God. When the Holy Sprit’s presence and leadership was replaced by the spirit of this world, He could no longer empower His people for holiness.
Jesus calls this group, wretched, miserable, poor, blind and naked. Being blind they could not recognize that everything that they believed they had accomplished had been completely rejected by Him. While performing many wonderful works and miracles in His name, and building great religious monuments, their reward would be, "I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity." (Matthew 7:23)
Who, or what could seduce such a chaste bride, espoused in holiness and purity, to barter it’s crown of righteousness for the corruption of the world? Blindly relinquishing it in the name of Jesus.
"O FOOLISH Galatians, who hath bewitched you, that ye should not obey the truth, ..." (Galatians 3:1)
Scripture warns us that prior to the rapture of the Church, many of it’s members will depart from the faith. When we think about it, we may consider those who have departed, as the many who have quit coming to church and have fallen back into the lifestyle once delivered from. They may very well make up a small portion of those who Paul speaks of. However, in this context the apostle is speaking of people who have remained consistent with their church attendance, sing in the choir, teach Sunday School etc.
Paul levels two very serious charges against the Galatian Church. First, he accuses them of being bewitched. It’s meaning here is "to fascinate by false representations". Secondly, because they have been deceived, they have fallen into disobedience and rejection of the truth of the Word.
Spiritual deception is one of the major strategies Satan is using against the last days Christian. The Laodicean church has been deceived into thinking everything is O.K. They have equated material acquisition with being in God’s will, and the pursuit of them as spiritual. They have achieved the status that is being propagated from the pulpits of many churches today. "God wants only the biggest and the best for His people. And, if you are living by faith this life style is reserved for you".