Today’s Scripture: The mystery of the seven stars which thou sawest in my right hand, and the seven golden candlesticks. The seven stars are the angels of the seven churches: and the seven candlesticks which thou sawest are the seven churches. Revelation 1:20

A man was walking in a very dark room holding his arm to the wall looking for a light switch. Suddenly, he walked right into something he couldn’t see. In the dark room, he had run into a lamp stand, which proceeded to fall and shatter on the ground. The lamp that provided no light was a hazard rather than a benefit.

In Revelation, Christ refers to local churches as candlesticks. Candlesticks are similar to a lamp stand. This is a good way to describe a church because churches are to be lights in a dark world. However, if churches don’t shine the Light of the World, they become like a lamp stand with no light. They are actually a hazard.

Jesus is the Light of the World. (John 8:12) As churches, it is our duty to shine the Light. We do that by sharing the gospel. From the member who sits in the pew every Sunday to the pastor who preaches the Word, all of us have the duty to share the gospel with everyone we can.

When a church fails to give the gospel to the lost, the rest of their works have no eternal value. If a church dedicates itself to feed the poor and provide housing for orphans (which is good) but never gives the gospel, what value will that have in eternity? How will the church answer to God and those people for not sharing the gospel?

All the church did was provide a more comfortable path to Hell. It really is that serious. A church’s duty is to give the gospel. If you are part of a church that is reaching the lost, be sure to get involved. If you are a pastor, be sure that everything you do focuses on the big picture of furthering the gospel. Every church ought to be a well-lit candlestick!

Devotional by Jim Scudder Jr.