In light of this exhortation, neglecting not the gathering together to meet and assemble

“not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.” ‭‭Hebrews‬ ‭10:25‬ ‭

What was a Laodicean church member who attended supposed to do in a church that perceived itself as fine but was said to be lacking

“For you say, I am rich, I have prospered, and I need nothing, not realizing that you are wretched, pitiable, poor, blind, and naked.” ‭‭Revelation‬ ‭3:17‬ ‭

If the church was judged collectively, what was the individual to do if the rest (majority) of the church refused to be zealous and repent?

Was he to remain a member there and suffer the fate of that church/city? Lacking spiritual growth and godliness?

What would be the expectation from Jesus for the individual who did repent and was zealous, despite the rest of the church being in disobedience?

  • Should they continue to attend that church
  • Are they expected to move to another city
  • Something else
  • 1
    @GratefulDisciple I just wanted to know what was Jesus expecting from the member that was zealous and repented? To stay and receive what was coming to the whole local church? The threat of the candlestick being removed? Would he know when that happened and would that still have a been a church at that point?
    – Autodidact
    Feb 2, 2021 at 15:04
  • 1
    Remember that the Laodicean church member would have no other options. There would only be one church in Laodicea at that time. If you are trying to find advice on how to deal with a personal situation, then this isn't the right place to get that advice. Feb 2, 2021 at 15:06
  • @GratefulDisciple Jesus threatens to take away the lampstand for lack of repentance “Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent, and do the works you did at first. If not, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place, unless you repent.” ‭‭Revelation‬ ‭2:5‬ if He does how is that not punishing the member who did repent with the ones that didn’t?
    – Autodidact
    Feb 2, 2021 at 15:15
  • 1
    @DJClayworth not looking for advice, I’m asking about Laodicea, did Jesus expect the repentant member to move to another city or continue in an apostate church, potentially with a removed lampstand? Or something else.
    – Autodidact
    Feb 2, 2021 at 15:18
  • 1
    This is a valid question and very pertinent to today's conditions. Up-voted +1.
    – Nigel J
    Feb 2, 2021 at 15:55

1 Answer 1


This is part of a wider question about what believers should do when the find themselves belonging to a church which has gone astray. There are no easy answers and much will depend on the actual context.

In the specific instance of Laodicea, if hypothetically the church did not repent, then I think their lampstand being removed would equate to them not being a church any more. If there were faithful members within the church who did obey, then I think 2 Corinthians 6:17 would be applicable. If you believe that the church has gone astray to the point of not being Christian any more, then the only option left is to separate.

I would hope there would be a number of faithful believers left in Laodicea who would be able to meet together and form a church. If not, then perhaps moving would be an option. I hope that God would give clear guidance in that situation.

In the 21st century there are analogous situations, e.g. what happens when churches break off from mainline denominations such as ACNA breaking off from the Episcopal Church in America.

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