This message comes to us from the book of Isaiah. It is an old prophecy, yet the application is new, for our day and time, for your church and for mine!
“You women who are so complacent, rise up and listen to me; you daughters who feel secure, hear what I have to say!” (Isa 32:9)
Who is this prophecy addressing?
Women in prophecy are often used to symbolize churches (See Rev. 12 & 17). Therefore, the women in this prophecy can be taken to represent any complacent church.
But whose church is complacent?
When addressing the church of Laodicea, Rev. 3:17,18 gives us some insight: ” You say, ‘I am rich; I have acquired wealth and do not need a thing.’ But you do not realize that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind and naked.”
Sounds familiar, doesn’t it? There couldn’t be a more accurate description of modern, western world Christianity. Think about it! We go to church once a week, or twice, if we are lucky, we drop our money in the offering plate, we feel like we’ve done a good thing, like we’ve pleased God, and then we go back home and continue our lives. But we do not realize how poor, pitiful, and blind we really are! We forget that God is looking for a relationship with us, not simply a list of rules to be followed, and that without that love-based relationship, we are poor, wretched, pitiful, and too blind to even see it.
Friends, the message of Isa 32 is for our churches! The complacent women represent the modern day, western church!
And what does God say to these women? “In little more than a year you who feel secure will tremble; the grape harvest will fail, and the harvest of fruit will not come.” (Isaiah 32:10)
What is our “harvest”? Jesus makes reference to “harvest” in Matthew: “The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few . . . Because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd.” (9:27,36). Friends, the “harvest” represents the helpless, harassed crowds of the unsaved! The same ones we are told to bring to Christ: “Go into all the world and preach the good news to all creation. Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.” (Mark 16:15-16)
There are a few in our western churches with a passion for the unsaved, but compared to God’s people in persecuted countries, they are pitifully few and far between. Yet these poor, lost souls, like sheep without a shepherd, are our responsibility!
And what happens if we don’t take our responsibility seriously, if we remain complacent? . . . “The grape harvest will FAIL”! There will be a time, friends, when the hordes of unsaved people will no longer be able be reachable. It will be too late! Because the church’s complacency, millions will end up with eternal punishment!
Is it any wonder that Isaiah goes on to say: “Tremble, you complacent women; shudder, you daughters who feel secure! Strip off your clothes, put sackcloth around your waists. Beat your breasts for the pleasant fields, for the fruitful vines and for the land of my people, a land overgrown with thorns and briers–yes, mourn for all houses of merriment and for this city of revelry.” Isaiah 32:11-14
It is NOW that we are called into action! Now, before the harvest fails! Instead of resting in the false security of complacency, we are called to “Strip off [our] clothes,” – come out of our complacency-” put sackcloth around [our] waists”-seek God’s mercy-‘beat [our] breasts for the pleasant fields, for the fruitful vines and for the land of [God’s] people”-go into mourning before God, pleading with Him for the unsaved!
Enough to ponder, friend, but do ponder this: the lost of the world are our responsibility! Now is the time for us to put off our comfortable complacency, seek God’s mercy, and go into mourning before Him, pleading for the unsaved!
Join us next Saturday for the conclusion of a message to the complacent churches of the world.
God bless you!
In His love,
(To access the entire “A Message to the Complacent Church” mini-series, please click here.)