A lukewarm life is a displeasure to God; he would have us to be fervent in

spirit. God is pleased with us when we are lively stones, but not when we

are formal and lukewarm. A lukewarm state is a dangerous state. One very

dangerous thing about it is that usually when a person is lukewarm he is

unaware that he is lukewarm. If a man is sick and does not know that he is

sick, he is in great danger of his life, because he is not at all

to take the proper care of himself. So the man who is cold and formal but

thinks he is spiritual and full of love is not at all likely to do

anything for the improvement of his spiritual condition. He is very much

like the Irishman's turtle. I hesitate to relate anything so amusing, but

it so well illustrates the state of the lukewarm professor that I think I

am justifiable.

Some Irishmen had caught a large turtle and cut off his head. Then they

waited for him to die, but the turtle scrambled about for some hours.

Desiring an explanation of such a phenomenon, they accosted an Irishman

who was passing by. After watching the turtle for a moment, he remarked,

"He is dead, but he doesn't know it." This is the condition of the

lukewarm professors. They are spiritually dead, but are not aware of it.

The professors of Christianity at Laodicea were lukewarm, but they thought

themselves rich and increased with goods and in need of nothing.

Diseases of the human body are attended with certain feelings and symptoms

by which the physician can tell the nature of the affection in a

particular case. The diseases of the human soul are also attended with

certain symptoms by which the nature of the malady in a given case may be

known. I will now tell you of a few of the symptoms of lukewarmness, so

you may know whether such is your state.

First. A kind of doubtful or uncertain feeling as to whether you are right

with God, together with an unwillingness to examine yourself closely for

fear you are wanting. Being filled with the Spirit gives us fulness of


Second. If when you testify to being saved, sanctified, and ready for the

coming of Jesus, your heart fails to say amen and you wish down in your

soul you had a little better assurance that what your lips say were true,

you are not as spiritual as you should be. When we are filled with the

Spirit, our souls are assured and satisfied.

Third. Going along day after day in the same routine of life, taking it

for granted that you are at the work the Lord wants you to do, and not

earnestly seeking to know his will. Those who are spiritual can not

be contented without a definite knowledge of the will of God. If you are

going along without any real and positive knowledge of the will of God and

are not seeking to know it, surely you are lukewarm.

Fourth. If when your routine of life is in some way interrupted, you are

dissatisfied and complain; if you do not enjoy being moved out of your old

channel, but you wish to be let alone, it is evident that you have chosen

your own way and that God is not ordering your steps.

Fifth. If when you are called to the assistance of a neighbor or the sick

or even an enemy, you find a reluctancy to go and an often returning of

your own mind to your own concerns and a desire to hurry back to them, you

are, it appears, looking upon your own things, and not on the things of

others. The Bible tells us to look upon the things of others. If you see

your own needs, and see and care but little about the things of others,

you are selfish. Those who are spiritual have time to help others and do

it willingly.

Sixth. If when called upon to go to the assistance of some unfortunate one

and you can not possibly go, if you do not have a deep heart-regret and if

you do not ofttimes during the day think of the poor unfortunate man and

be pained at heart because of your inability to help him, you must be more

concerned about yourself than about others. You look on your own things

and do not see nor feel the needs of others. If such is true in you, you

are in a lukewarm state.

Seventh. If you were to be asked whether you are doing the work you are

now doing, solely and purposely for the glory of God, and you should be

obliged to answer that you had taken no particular thought about it, but

supposed it mattered little to the Lord, just so you were doing something,

this would surely show neglect, indifference, lukewarmness.

Eighth. If you are indifferent and unconcerned about making spiritual

progress; if you are not desiring and earnestly seeking for more of God;

if you are not earnestly striving to be more meek and humble, to be more

kind and patient; if you are carelessly tolerating acts of selfishness, of

impatience, unkindness, harshness, and lightness, you are certainly


Ninth. Neglect to read the Bible and to pray in secret; greater fervency

in public prayer than in secret prayer; more outward manifestation than

real inward piety; testifying or preaching beyond the true standard of

living--these too are evidences of lukewarmness. A man may become

enthusiastic in prayer, testimony, or sermon, and think he is making great

advancement; but if he does not live up to every word he speaks, he is

losing instead of gaining, because he is not walking in light.

Lukewarmness is very loathsome to God. It reproaches him. To make no

profession of love to God at all is not such a reproach to him as to

profess love and be lukewarm. God wants all your heart. If he can not have

it all, he will have none. He desires warm, fervent love. To love him only

partially, and not supremely, makes it appear as if he were worthy of only

half-hearted love. It makes other things equal with God.

After the physician learns the symptoms and pronounces the disease, he

then prescribes the remedy. Thank God, there is an unfailing remedy for

lukewarmness. Of course, "an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of

cure." "Repent and do the first works." Come to God and buy of him gold

tried in the fire. Exercise yourself in spiritual things if there yet be

any love in your heart. Shake off everything that is stupefying. Press

your way through to God in spite of dryness and deadness. Stir up your

soul. Give yourself to deep meditation upon the great love of God to you.

Pray in fervency and faith. Consecrate to the whole will of God. If your

case is not hopeless--and it is not--this will effect a cure.