Will ye also go away?
said Jesus unto the twelve, Will ye also go away?" John 6:67
These words are very emphatical.
Will YOU abandon me?
—YOU, whom I have distinguished with
innumerable marks of my affection
—YOU, whom I have chosen out of the world to
be my companions,
—YOU, to whom I have revealed the secrets of
the eternal world
—YOU, who have been witnesses of all my
—YOU, whom I intend to seat with me on my
throne in glory; will YOU go away?
Reader, in what state art THOU?
Hast THOU gone back from Christ, or art THOU
Wilt THOU go?
—THOU, whom he has redeemed by his blood
—THOU, whom he has upheld by his power, and
fed by his providence
—THOU, into whose wounded soul he has poured
the balm of pardoning mercy
—THOU, whom he has adopted into the heavenly
—THOU, whom he has comforted in so many
tribulations and adversities
—THOU, whose multiplied offences he has freely
and fully pardoned; wilt THOU go away?
- Adam Clarke, Commentary on Gospel of John
knocking on the door - of the Church!
the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; These things
saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of
the creation of God; I know thy works, that thou art neither
cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot. So then because
thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spew thee
out of my mouth.
- Revelation 3:14-16
In a day when faithful witnesses
to God's truth are becoming fewer and fewer, the Lord addresses
Himself to the church as the Amen (that is, the establisher of
all God's promises), the faithful and true Witness, who will
maintain to the last what is of God, though the great majority
of those who profess to follow Him be swept away by the
apostasy. He reproves the church for its lukewarmness and
indifference to Himself and the truth. He says, "Because thou
art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I am about to spew thee
out of my mouth." There is neither burning zeal for His word,
nor yet absolute repudiation of Christ and the Bible. Instead,
there is a nauseating, lukewarm condition that is abhorrent to
the Spirit of God. Lukewarm water is, in itself, an emetic; and
this is the figure the Lord here uses. He cannot tolerate such
conditions much longer, but will spew out the whole disgusting
mass in judgment.
Meantime, the church goes on in its pride and self-satisfaction,
saying, "I am rich and increased with goods, and have need of
nothing" ; knowing not that, in His eyes, it is "poor, and
miserable, and blind, and naked." Never were church dignitaries
and carnally-minded religious leaders more satisfied with
themselves and their great work than at the present time.
Anything and everything is advocated that will seem to make for
the church's popularity. The rights of the people alone
must be considered; the rights of the Lord Jesus Christ are not
even thought of. We have come to a time when, in many places, it
is easier to get on without Christ than with Him; easier to
carry on religious programs without the Holy Spirit, than
if He were working among us in mighty power. No wonder He says,
"I counsel thee to buy of Me gold tried in the fire "that is,
divine righteousness), that thou mayest be rich; and white
raiment (that is, practical righteousness) that thou mayest be
clothed, and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve (that is, the
anointing of the Holy Spirit) that thou mayest see." Yes, there
is lots of work, much fleshly energy and human effort being put
forth to reclaim the world, and make it a comfortable place for
men to live in, apart from Christ; but the great things of God's
truth are largely neglected, and myriads of so-called
church-workers are utter strangers to the new birth,
without which no one can see the Kingdom of God.
And so we see the Lord standing outside the door of the
professing church, and saying so tenderly, "Behold, I stand at
the door and knock; if any man hear my voice, and open the door,
I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with Me."
Ah beloved friends, it is getting late in the dispensation; the
night-shades are fast falling; and the Lord who, in the
beginning, was in the midst of His church, stands outside
that lukewarm system which calls itself by His name, and He
knocks in vain for entrance. Yet, individuals here and there
open to Him, and find His presence is more to them than all else
that the earth or the professing church can afford.
- H. A. Ironside, 1876-1951, Lectures on