Dear Brethren in Laodicea, do you know that prophecy positively declares that the people of God in the Laodicean church are in a critically dangerous condition and know it not? Well, Brethren, whether or not you realize it, whether or not you believe it, that precisely is the case. And if you hope to enter into eternal life, you must believe it, and that without delay. Whatever else you may believe or disbelieve, this one thing you must believe, “for it is the True Witness who speaks, and his testimony must be correct.” –Testimonies, Vol. 3, p. 253.
And remember that above all people, the Laodiceans should not only be the last but the least inclined to criticize, for they themselves, says the True Witness, are “wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked,” without so much even as suspecting it, but instead blissfully imagining that they are “rich, and increased with goods, and” in “need of nothing.” Rev. 3:17. How, then, can they be in a position truly to know anything about others!
Think, Brethren, and rouse to life! This voice, pleading with you to awake and avert the Enemy’s pitfalls cannot possibly be the Enemy’s voice! Remember that the Lord “surprises us by revealing His power through instruments of His own choice, while He passes by the men to whom we have looked as those through whom light should come. God desires us to receive the truth upon its own merits,–because it is truth.”–Testimonies to Ministers, p. 106.
“No matter by whom light is sent, we should open our hearts to receive it with the meekness of Christ….We should all know what is being taught among us; for if it is truth, we need it.”–Gospel Workers, p. 301.
“The great danger with our people has been that of depending upon men, and making flesh their arm. Those who have not been in the habit of searching the Bible for themselves, or weighing evidence, have confidence in the leading men and accept the decisions they make; and thus many will reject the very messages God sends to His people, if these leading brethren do not accept them.”–Testimonies to Ministers, pp. 106, 107.
“He will use men for the accomplishment of His purpose whom some of the brethren would reject as unfit to engage in the work.”–The Review and Herald, Feb. 9, 1895.
In the light of these warnings, will you not take time carefully and prayerfully to ascertain whether or not God is leading in this reformatory work? He has promised to all who will do this, that He will not leave them in darkness but will guide them into all Truth. So will you not take Him at His Word, and try Him?
We plead with you to, for already “the agencies of evil are combining their forces, and consolidating. They are strengthening for the last great crisis. Great changes are soon to take place in our world,” says Inspiration, “and the final movements will be rapid ones….The time is coming when in their fraud and insolence men will reach a point that the Lord will not permit them to pass, and they will learn that there is a limit to the forbearance of Jehovah….Those who hold the reins of government are not able to solve the problem of moral corruption, poverty, pauperism, and increasing crime. They are struggling in vain to place business operations on a more secure basis….Soon everything that can be shaken will be shaken, that those things that can not be shaken may remain….
“It is impossible to give any idea of the experience of the people of God who shall be alive upon the earth when celestial glory and a repetition of the persecutions of the past are blended. They will walk in the light proceeding from the throne of God. By means of the angels there will be constant communication between heaven and earth.”–Testimonies, Vol. 9, pp. 11, 13, 15, 16.
In view of these solemn realities even now looming before our eyes, no longer, Brother Sister, hide yourself in the darkness. Stand in the light, lest you stumble and fall and not be found. Come, take time, and—Let Us Reason Together.
The Laodicean church, the last of the seven churches (Rev. 2, 3), being figurative of the Christian church in her last period, our time, the message on record to her is therefore the last message to the church. So, plainly, if there is any Bible subject essential for the church to study, the message to the Laodiceans certainly is.
Although satisfied with their attainments, the Laodiceans who believe and take God at His Word will not question Him concerning their condition but will, whether they see it or not, acknowledge that they are in a “sad deception,” “wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind and naked.” Having honestly made this acknowledgment, they will, in consequent obedience to the True Witness’ counsel to buy of Him eyesalve which He alone can supply, anoint their eyes with it and be able to see.
Those, though, who recline in the false security of self-complacence, will pay no attention to the warning counsel, and will as a result lose everything–be spued out! Yet how few does this dread threat alarm! How few does it impel to find out where the trouble lies and how they stand! How few, indeed, does it even trouble! And O how few incline to inquire into it for fear that it may rebuke their evil course and deprive them of some sinful pleasure which they dearly cherish! Surprisingly few yet all too truly.
Then, too, there being instilled in them great fear of false prophets, and not at all awakened in them any expectation of true ones (although there can be no false where there are no true), they are now therefore almost beyond reach. And behind their careless attitude is seen the truth that “the pains of duty and the pleasures of sin are the cords with which Satan binds men in his snares” (Testimonies, Vol. 5, p. 53), while behind the deeply instilled fear of false prophets, is seen the false watchman’s carefulness to keep them from coming in contact with the messengers whom God has sent to them.
Our deep concern, therefore, is that there awaken an interest in you, dear Laodicean, to go to the bottom of the matter, to make sure of your salvation. So will you not be sensible and courteous enough to sit down with this lightbearer in humble, impartial, prayerful study which must repay you many, many times over what you put into it? Remember, there is a divine law that converts every honest effort into joy, a personal experience with God, and eternal life. So will you not start now to measure yourself, no longer by what you think you are or will be but by what the Lord says you are and must be? Begin your investigation with the ensuing—Seven Questions.