“So I advise you to buy gold from me—gold that has been purified by fire. Then you will be rich. Also buy white garments from me so you will not be shamed by your nakedness, and ointment for your eyes so you will be able to see” (Rev. 3:18, NLT).
This verse came into my spirit this morning as I was remembering what I dreamed last night. In the dream, my eye was red and clearly had something wrong with it. A prominent minister approached me with urgency, to pray for me. When she did, I felt entirely enveloped in love and collapsed under the power of God. When I came back to consciousness (in the dream), my eye was completely healed.
As I was journaling this dream, I sensed it was not only for me, but also for you. Holy Spirit began to give me a word to share with you. I opened up the book of Revelation to the passage above, and beautiful truth began to stir in my heart.
Before I jump into the meaning of the dream, let’s take a look at the Scripture He highlighted in conjunction with it. The preceding verse is important as well: “You say, ‘I am rich. I have everything I want. I don’t need a thing!’ And you don’t realize that you are wretched and miserable and poor and blind and naked” (v. 17). Ouch, right? Sometimes, though, we need the Lord to be lovingly blunt with us.
The first thing Jesus does for us here is identify three reasons that the Laodicean church is in a state of spiritual wretchedness and misery (by extension, this sometimes applies to us too):
- Thinking they are wealthy, they are poor.
- Thinking they lack nothing, they are naked.
- Thinking they already have everything desirable, they are blind.
Jesus then offers three spiritual commodities to His children – them and us – that tenderly address and provide for these crippling issues:
- Purified gold.
- White garments.
- Eye salve/ointment.
Each one is symbolic of something that we desperately need from Him. We will examine them more closely, one by one. But first, we need to make sure and grasp what He means by instructing us to “buy” them from Him.
Oftentimes, we can understand one Scripture by cross-referencing another, related passage. In this case, Isaiah 55:1 provides us the insight we need: “The Lord says, ‘All you who are thirsty, come and drink. Those of you who do not have money, come, buy and eat! Come buy wine and milk without money and without cost” (NCV, bold emphasis mine).
In the economy of this world, a purchase is an exchange of merchandise or services for money. The economy of the Kingdom of Heaven works in an entirely different way. God does not mean that we are to request goods from Him that we must pay Him for. No; rather, He is inviting us into a different kind of exchange. We surrender to Him our poverty, and He gives us riches. We surrender to Him our nakedness, and He clothes us lavishly. We surrender to Him our blindness, and He bestows on us eyes that can see. His eternal nature means that He has infinite resources at His disposal, and He delights to lavish them all on us, all at His own expense!
So, reflecting His openhanded, bighearted, munificent generosity, this passage continues: “Why spend your money on something that is not real food? Why work for something that doesn’t really satisfy you? Listen closely to me, and you will eat what is good; your soul will enjoy the rich food that satisfies. Come to me and listen; listen to me so you may live” (vv. 2-3).
(For the sake of keeping this word in digestible, bite-sized pieces, I will be sharing it over multiple days. I look forward to releasing Part 2 tomorrow!)