Can a lukewarm Christian have eternal life in heaven with Jesus?
What is a lukewarm Christian?
I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other! So, because you are lukewarm—neither hot nor cold—I am about to spit you out of my mouth. (Revelation 3:15-16)
Firstly, a lukewarm Christian is a believer in Jesus Christ (a self proclaimed Christian) who may be a churchgoer and performs some notable Christian deeds. Others may even hold them in high regard because of their outward appearance of Christianity based on the standards of other lukewarm Christians whose Christian benchmark is very low. On the outside they have all the hallmarks of a Christian (e.g. they know scripture, can quote scripture passages, holds a ministry in church, can pray eloquently, speaks in tongues and is a ‘nice’ person etc).
However, on the inside they demonstrate no evidence of being reformed through their faith in Jesus Christ even after many years (e.g. they consistently exercise any or some of the following - unforgiveness, resentment, pride, arrogance, bitterness, jealousy, sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions and envy; drunkenness, orgies, malice, violence, gossip, judges others, cheats, steals, dishonesty etc. Galatians 5:19-21).
If we were to see men’s heart as God sees it and measure Christians by the above criteria, one would have to conclude that there are very few true Christians on this earth today. We all need to examine our hearts and really be honest with ourselves as to the standard of Christianity we practice. More importantly, is our watered down or lukewarm Christianity acceptable to God? God judges the heart: I the Lord search the heart and examine the mind, to reward each person according to their conduct, according to what their deeds deserve.” (Jeremiah 17:10)
The self proclaimed Christian described above willingly continues to perform the same evil sins as when they were non believers in Jesus Christ and are not prepared to or refuse to repent. Instead, they continue to indulge in sin without guilt or repentance (to feel such sorrow for their sin(s) or fault as to be willing to change one's life for the better). A distinction must be made between those struggling with sinful habits or behaviour who sincerely and longingly desire to be free from it (actively seeking help from God and others), and those who in no way want to give up their sinful behaviour or habits. Only God can discern between the two conditions. However, scripture tells us that a person's deeds reveal the condition or intent of their heart.
“Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves. You will know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes from thorn-bushes or figs from thistles? Even so, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Therefore by their fruits you will know them. (Matthew 7:15-20)
Secondly, the lukewarm Christian has no passion or desire to obey Jesus’ commands. Instead, they live according to their own standards and define their own acceptable Christian criteria that they want or expect others to follow. The bible describes such people in the following way:
But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God— having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with such people. They are the kind who worm their way into homes and gain control over gullible women, who are loaded down with sins and are swayed by all kinds of evil desires, always learning but never able to come to a knowledge of the truth. (2 Timothy 3-7)
We all have to examine our hearts to see if we hold even the slightest trace of these sins and quickly address them if we do. Examine yourselves to see whether you are in the faith; test yourselves. Do you not realise that Christ Jesus is in you—unless, of course, you fail the test? (2 Corinthians 13:5)
A lukewarm Christian does not obey Jesus?
Let us explore the theme of obedience to Jesus as an expression of our Christian love and faith in Him. The following scriptures sets the stage.
Thus said Jesus:
"If you love me, keep my commands.
Jesus replied, "Anyone who loves me will obey my teaching. My Father will love them, and we will come to them and make our home with them.
"Why do you call me, 'Lord, Lord,' and do not do what I say?
Jesus said that the two greatest commandments are: Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘Love your neighbour as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.” (Mark 12:30-31).
We can boil down obedience to Jesus Christ to these two commandments. The first one is easy to grasp but not necessarily easy to apply. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.
This requires the Christian to put the will of God above their own will and desire. Jesus demonstrated this throughout his entire life on earth as an example for us to follow.
For I have come down from heaven not to do my will but to do the will of him who sent me.
Can we truly say with confidence that we are obedience to Jesus?
Here are some of Jesus' commands to us Christians:
A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. (John 13:34)
He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation. (Mark 16:15)
“You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbour and hate your enemy. But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? And if you greet only your own people, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that? Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect. (Matthew 5:43-48)
Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptising them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. (Matthew 28:19-20)
But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth." (Acts 1:8)
As Christians who supposedly love Jesus - love for Jesus is expressed through obedience to His commands:
Do we really love our enemies and intercede on their behalf that they may know God and follow Jesus?
Do we pray for God to deliver those who persecute us and to bring them into His kingdom?
Do we preach the gospel to the world so that they may know the truth and be saved?
Do we actively witness for Christ and teach others to obey Jesus?
Friends, today’s Christianity does not travail for the lost souls to the scale we ought to. If we did we would see a magnificent move of God here on earth.
If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land. (2 Chronicles 7:14)
Instead, today’s Christianity is mostly about self interest (often with the love of money and selfish ambition at its core) with little to no regard for the lost souls of the world. It is a corrupted and perverted version of Christianity that has led many people astray. It is heresy and a desperate situation. There are some genuine Christians who make themselves available to obey Jesus and to follow His commands. However, they are relatively few and far between.
We are the light of the world. It’s time that we come out from hiding and bring forth the light of God so that many more souls will be saved before it's too late.
He said to them, “Do you bring in a lamp to put it under a bowl or a bed? Instead, don’t you put it on its stand? (Mark 4:21)
As to whether a lukewarm Christian will enter heaven, I don’t know. Only God knows. One thing is for certain, Jesus will spit out the lukewarm Christian from His mouth and that is not a great place to find oneself.