LUKEWARM: Judaism vs Islam vs Christianity/Messianic

lukewarm

 

The FIRST things we have to understand is what LUKEWARM means . . .

It is used only once in the text. It is used of the assembly/Messianic community/Church at Laodicea.

Revelation 3:16 (CJB)

So, because you are lukewarm,

neither cold nor hot,

I will vomit you out of my mouth!

Yeshua (Jesus) – the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the Ruler of God’s creation: communicated this message through His angel (messenger) to Yochanan (John).

χλιαρός chliaros Not hot – not cold

Lukewarm . . . tepid . . . moderate . . . NOT excessive . . . limited . . . restrained. . . . not rigorous

THIS is NOT a good thing to BE in the faith! Notice what Yeshua says in context:

Revelation 3:15 (CJB)

 “I know what you are doing:

you are neither cold nor hot.

How I wish you were either one or the other!

So how are cold and hot used in the text? Only one other time other than verse 15 and 16 above:

Matthew 10:42 (CJB)

Indeed, if someone gives

just a cup of cold water to one of these little ones

because he is my talmid — yes! — I tell you, he will certainly not lose his reward!”

How is hot used? Only in 3:15 and 3:16 which are both above as well.

You may be confused. Surely hot and cold are in the text more than this!

The words used for hot and cold in the lukewarm verse are:

  • Hot – ζεστός zestos Phonetic Pronunciation: dzes-tos’
  • Cold – ψυχρός psuchros Phonetic Pronunciation: psoo-chros’

However, many translations of the text used cold in other verses such as the following:

Matthew 24:11-12 (CJB)

many false prophets will appear and fool many people;

and many people’s love will grow cold

because of increased distance from Torah.

Cold here is a little bit different word: ψύχω psuchō Phonetic Pronunciation: psoo’-kho

Do you see the correlation here?

Increased distance from Torah = love that diminishes = cold.

In the TaNaKh (Old Testament), we see cold and hot more frequently (but not much) than in the New Covenant (New Testament). Some examples:

Proverbs 25:25 (CJB)

Like cold water to a person faint from thirst

is good news from a distant land.

Proverbs 22:24-25 (CJB)

Don’t associate with an angry man;

make no hot-tempered man your companion.

 If you do, you may learn his ways

and find yourself caught in a trap.

I add these things so that we can understand what is being said . . . how they were used THEN in language as opposed to now.

Revelation 3:15-16 (CJB)

 “I know what you are doing:

you are neither cold nor hot.

How I wish you were either one or the other!

So, because you are lukewarm,

neither cold nor hot,

I will vomit you out of my mouth!

Notice what Dr Craig Keener writes in his Bible Background Commentary on Revelation 3:15-16:

3:15-16. Cold water (and sometimes spiced hot water) was preferred for drinking, and hot water for bathing, but Laodicea lacked a natural water supply. Water piped in from hot springs six miles to the south, like any cold water that could have been procured from the mountains, would be lukewarm by the time it reached Laodicea.

Although water could be heated, the natural lukewarmness of local water (in contrast with the hot water available at nearby Hierapolis) was undoubtedly a standard complaint of local residents, most of whom had an otherwise comfortable lifestyle.  (Their imported water was also full of sediment, though better, said the geographer Strabo, than the water of Hierapolis.)

Jesus says: “Were you hot [i.e., for bathing] or cold [i.e., for drinking],

you would be useful;

but as it is, I feel toward you the way you feel toward your water supply

—you make me sick.”

So, what is Yeshua (Jesus) stating through His messenger (angel) to Yochanan (John)?

To answer this, we have to look at 4 words that are used daily in the headlines.

Using Noah Webster’s 1913 Unabridged Dictionary, we see the following definitions:

  1. Moderate: to keep within bounds; to make temperate; to lessen; to allay; to repress; to temper;
  2. Radical: pertaining to the root or origin; reaching to the center, to the foundation, to the ultimate sources, to the principles, or the like; original; fundamental; thorough-going; unsparing; extreme;
  3. Fundamentalist: the beliefs and a literal adherence to a set of basic principles
  4. Extremist: A supporter of extreme doctrines or practice; one who holds extreme opinions. A person who strictly and literally follows a set of rules and laws especially about religion

Which one are YOU?

Are you a Moderate? A Radical? A Fundamentalist? An Extremist?

Which one should you not be? Here is a better question . . .

Which one or ones was Yeshua (Jesus)?

I am going to amplify and expound a verse in the text for you so that there is no misunderstanding of what is being said in the verse . . . both in the verse and the context of what He taught in other parts of the text. I am going to essentially remove the “wiggle room” as it were.

1st John 2:11 –

A person who says he stands and abides in Yeshua (Jesus) – ie, calls him or herself a Christian or follower of the Way, or Messianic,

OWES and is INDEBTED

to the Messiah to turn from sin and worldliness (human standards and reasoning) to God pursuing Holiness and peace . . .

to live as He lived – to love as He loved – to forgive as He forgave

to walk (as in our walk with God) as He walked.

If you think I have I have taken an eisegetical (reading into) approach to this verse, notice the following context 3 verses later:

1 John 2:15-16 (CJB)

Do not love the world or the things of(in) the world.

If someone loves the world, then love for the Father

is not in him;

 because all the things of the world — the desires of the old nature, the desires of the eyes, and the pretensions of life — are not from the Father but from the world.

So a new question based upon my previous questions:

Are you a Moderate? A Radical? A Fundamentalist? An Extremist?

Which one should you not be?

Which of the following terms describe the word LUKEWARM?

Would an Extremist (A supporter of extreme doctrines or practice; one who holds extreme opinions. A person who strictly and literally follows a set of rules and laws especially about religion) be considered LUKEWARM?

Would a Radical (pertaining to the root or origin; reaching to the center, to the foundation, to the ultimate sources, to the principles, or the like; original; fundamental; thorough-going; unsparing; extreme) be considered LUKEWARM?

Would a Fundamentalist (the beliefs and a literal adherence to a set of basic principles) be considered LUKEWARM?

Would a Moderate (to keep within bounds; to make temperate; to lessen; to allay; to repress; to temper) be considered LUKEWARM?

If you remember what was written earlier, you have your answer . . .

χλιαρός chliaros Not hot – not cold

Lukewarm . . . tepid . . . moderate . . . NOT excessive . . . limited . . . restrained. . . . not rigorous

You see, by definition :

  • Yeshua (Jesus) was a Fundamentalist
  • Yeshua (Jesus) was a Radical
  • Yeshua (Jesus) was an Extremist.

Yeshua (Jesus) was NOT a moderate! He was NOT LUKEWARM!

His polemic against lukewarm in Revelation is a polemic against moderate.

How does this apply to Judaism? To Islam? To Christianity?

We could go into many topics and many debates. One for each will suffice.

Judaism:

Tel-Aviv has one of the largest homosexual parades in the world. Some have called it the “gay capital of the Middle East.” Around 200,00 people come to this 400,000 person population in Israel for this parade. I have been to Israel when they were preparing for it right after Shavu’ot (Festival of Weeks – First Fruits). They paint all of the crosswalks rainbow colored. Acceptance of homosexuality has been promoted in speeches by Benjamin Netanyahu, by the IDF (Israeli Defense Force) – recently about a transgender officer in the IDF, and by the Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The Ultra-Orthodox are clearly against this but are a small minority of the Israeli population.

Adonai says in the text through His prophet Moshe:

 “‘You are to observe all my regulations and rulings and act on them,

Why are they to observe ALL of His regulations?

so that the land to which I am bringing you will not vomit you out.

Do not live by the regulations of the nation which I am expelling ahead of you;

Why are they NOT to live by the regulations of the former inhabitants?

because they did all these things, which is why I detested (disgusted-loathe) them.

~ ~ Leviticus 20:22-23 (CJB) ~ ~

What is being referenced in all these things?

If a man goes to bed with a man as with a woman,

both of them have committed an abomination;

they must be put to death; their blood is on them.

~ ~ Leviticus 20:13 (CJB) ~ ~

So here is the question . . .

Based upon the command above from Adonai and His reasoning for this command, would modern Judaism in Israel (let alone America) and their embracement of homosexuality be considered:

  • Extremist
  • Radical
  • Fundamentalist
  • Moderate – LUKEWARM

concerning Adonai’s command to them concerning homosexuality?

Islam:

In Islam, before Jihad (to strive to one’s maximum abilities to achieve ones goals) there is the Da’wah (the invitation) Both are part of the proselytizing process. Both are in the Qur’an. Here are a couple of examples from the Suras of the Qu’ran:

Da’wah:

In Sura An-Nahl (The Bee) 16:125, it is stated:

Invite to the way of your Lord with wisdom and good instruction,

and argue with them in a way that is best.

Indeed, your Lord is most knowing of who has strayed from His way,

and He is most knowing of who is [rightly] guided.

Jihad:

In Sura Muhammad 47:4, it is stated:

So, when you meet (in fight Jihad in Allah’s Cause),

those who disbelieve smite at their necks

till when you have killed and wounded many of them,

then bind a bond firmly (on them, i.e. take them as captives).

Thereafter (is the time) either for generosity (i.e. free them without ransom),

or ransom (according to what benefits Islam),

until the war lays down its burden.

Thus [you are ordered by Allah to continue in carrying out Jihad

against the disbelievers till they embrace Islam

(i.e. are saved from the punishment in the Hell-fire)

or at least come under your protection],

but if it had been Allah’s Will,

He Himself could certainly have punished them (without you).

But (He lets you fight), in order to test you, some with others.

But those who are killed in the Way of Allah, He will never let their deeds be lost,

In Sura Al-Baqarah (The Cow) 2:216, it is stated:

Jihad (holy fighting in Allah’s Cause)

is ordained for you (Muslims) though you dislike it,

and it may be that you dislike a thing which is good for you

and that you like a thing which is bad for you.

Allah knows but you do not know.

Finally, there is “The Verse of the Sword” in Sura At-Tawbah (The Repentance) 9:5:

And when the sacred months have passed,

then kill the polytheists wherever you find them

and capture them and besiege them

and sit in wait for them at every place of ambush.

But if they should repent, establish prayer, and give zakah,

let them [go] on their way.

Indeed, Allah is Forgiving and Merciful.

Two questions to focus on from “The Verse of the Sword” :

  1. Who are the polytheists?
  2. What happens if they do NOT repent, establish prayer, or give zakah . . .  in a word – convert?

So now we come to the same question we posed of Judaism . . .

Based upon the commands above in the Suras from the Qu’ran, would Islam, as it is practiced in America today, be considered:

  • Extremist
  • Radical
  • Fundamentalist
  • Moderate – LUKEWARM

Let me ask a more pointed question . . .

Based upon the commands above in the Suras from the Qu’ran, would Islam, as it is practiced by ISIS, be considered:

  • Extremist
  • Radical
  • Fundamentalist
  • Moderate – LUKEWARM

Sobering, huh?

Christianity/Messianic:

In the New Covenant (New Testament), we are told that the 2 Most Important Commands are the catalyst for understanding, applying, and living what we read in the text:

Matthew 22:37-39 (CJB)

 He told him,

“‘You are to love Adonai your God

with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.’

Deuteronomy 6:4-9 (CJB)

Sh’ma, Yisra’el! Adonai Eloheinu, Adonai echad

[Hear, Isra’el! Adonai our God, Adonai is one];  and you are to love Adonai your God

with all your heart,

all your being

and all your resources.  These words, which I am ordering you today,

are to be on your heart;  and you are to teach them carefully to your children.

You are to talk about them

when you sit at home,

when you are traveling on the road,

when you lie down and

when you get up.  Tie them on your hand as a sign,

put them at the front of a headband around your forehead,  and write them on the door-frames of your house and on your gates.

This is the greatest and most important mitzvah.

And a second is similar to it,

You are to love your neighbor as yourself.’

Leviticus 19:18 (CJB)

Don’t take vengeance

on or bear a grudge

against any of your people;

rather,

love your neighbor as yourself;

I am Adonai.

Yeshua (Jesus) is asked by a man what he must do to inherit eternal life to try and trap Him . . .

Luke 10:25-28 (CJB)

 An expert in Torah stood up to try and trap him by asking,

“Rabbi, what should I do to obtain eternal life?”

But Yeshua said to him,

“What is written in the Torah? How do you read it?”

He answered, “

You are to love Adonai your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength and with all your understanding;

and your neighbor as yourself.”

“That’s the right answer,” Yeshua said.

Do this, and you will have life.”

The two commands that are MOST IMPORTANT . . .

The two commands that ALL of the others are DEPENDENT on . . .

Matthew 22:40 (CJB)

All of the Torah and the Prophets are dependent on these two mitzvot.”

So let me pose some questions . . .

  • If Christianity/Messianics followed just these 2 commands, would there be anyone hungry in America?
  • If Christianity/Messianics followed just these 2 commands, would there be anyone homeless in America?

In case you don’t know, let’s look at the Acts 2:42 assembly (church) for our answer:

Acts 2:44-45 (CJB)

All those trusting in Yeshua

stayed together and had everything in common;  in fact,

they sold their property and possessions

and distributed the proceeds to all who were in need.

But let me drive the point home farther . . .

Deuteronomy 15:7-8 (CJB)

 “If someone among you is needy,

one of your brothers,

in any of your towns in your land which Adonai your God is giving you,

you are not to harden your heart

or shut your hand from giving to your needy brother.

No, you must open your hand to him

and lend him enough to meet his need

and enable him to obtain what he wants.

If your heart is hard and you still can not/will not see it, let’s look at what Yeshua (Jesus) Himself said:

Sheep and Goats

Matthew 25:31-33 (CJB)

31 “When the Son of Man comes in his glory,

accompanied by all the angels,

he will sit on his glorious throne.

32 All the nations will be assembled before him,

and he will separate people one from another

as a shepherd separates sheep from goats.

33 The ‘sheep’ he will place at his right hand

and the goats’ at his left.

Sheep on the right, goats on the left . . .

Matthew 25:34-40 (CJB)

34 “Then the King will say to those on his right,

‘Come, you whom my Father has blessed, take your inheritance,

the Kingdom prepared for you from the founding of the world.

35 For I was hungry and you gave me food,

I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink,

I was a stranger and you made me your guest,

36 I needed clothes and you provided them,

I was sick and you took care of me,

I was in prison and you visited me.’

37 Then the people who have done what God wants will reply,

‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you,

or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38 When did we see you a stranger and make you our guest,

or needing clothes and provide them? 39 When did we see you sick or in prison, and visit you?’ 40 The King will say to them,

‘Yes! I tell you that whenever you did these things

for one of the least important of these brothers of mine,

you did them for me!’

These are the sheep! These are the people that have obeyed the command – the “order” from Adonai:

You must open your hand to your poor and needy brother in your land.’

So what about His left? What about the “goats?”

Matthew 25:41-45 (CJB)

41 “Then he will also speak to those on his left, saying,

‘Get away from me, you who are cursed!

Go off into the fire prepared for the Adversary and his angels!

42 For I was hungry and you gave me no food,

thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink,

43 a stranger and you did not welcome me,

needing clothes and you did not give them to me,

sick and in prison and you did not visit me.’

44 Then they too will reply,

‘Lord, when did we see you hungry, thirsty, a stranger,

needing clothes, sick or in prison, and not take care of you?’ 45 And he will answer them,

‘Yes! I tell you that whenever you refused to do it

for the least important of these people,

you refused to do it for me!’

What will happen to the goats on his left?!?

Matthew 25:46 (CJB)

46 They will go off to eternal punishment,

but

those who have done what God wants will go to eternal life.”

Ignoring the poor . . . the homeless . . . . leads to one place . . . In a word . . . HELL!

Churches and Shuls take in billions of dollars each year . . .

They build extravagant houses of worship . . . multi-million dollar worship facilities . . .

They take donations/tithes/offering on Saturday and Sunday

and turn away the needy that call them on Monday . . .

Wikipedia states:

  • 2.5 million children are homeless in America (1 out of 30).

This stat alone, is an indictment against the assemblies – the churches and shuls.

So let me ask the same question that I posited concerning Judaism and Islam.

Based upon the teachings of Yeshua (Jesus), and the commands in the text he quotes, would modern Christianity and Messianics as a whole be considered:

  • Extremist
  • Radical
  • Fundamentalist
  • Moderate – LUKEWARM

concerning Adonai’s command to take care of the poor in our midst?

Billions of dollars taken in . . . HUGE worship centers built . . . Poor ignored . . . homelessness in America an epidemic . . .

Let me re-quote Dr Craig Keener:

Jesus says: “Were you hot [i.e., for bathing] or cold [i.e., for drinking],

you would be useful;

but as it is, I feel toward you the way you feel toward your water supply

—you make me sick.”

Is this what loving our neighbor looks like?!?

LUKEWARM . . .

neither hot nor cold . . .

useless . . .

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About Even If Ministries

Dani'el 3:17-18 (CJB) 17 Your majesty, if our God, whom we serve, is able to save us, he will save us from the blazing hot furnace and from your power. 18 But even if he doesn’t, we want you to know, your majesty, that we will neither serve your gods nor worship the gold statue which you have set up.”
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