“Those whom I love I rebuke and discipline.
So be earnest and repent.”
Revelation 3:19 (NIV)
God speaks these words to the church at Laodicea through John. Earlier in the passage, He tells this church that is lukewarm—“neither hot nor cold.” God explains he will react to their deeds by “spitting you out of my mouth.”
The people don’t understand their condition of being wretched, pitiful, poor, and naked. The heavenly Father advises the church to partake of good things He has to offer in order to “hide (their) shamefulness and to heal their spiritual blindness.
Next, He speaks the words of our focus verse. What does He say? He explains that He rebukes those He loves. To rebuke another person, one criticizes sharply or reprimands. When a person administers discipline, he or she uses the practice of training people to obey rules or a code of behavior, using punishment to correct disobedience. It would seem to me that the use of reprimands and the training of people go hand in hand.
God continues to tell the people of Laodicea what actions they can take to get back right with God. He simply tells them to be honest about how they have displeased Him and then tells them to turn away from those practices.
Jesus told the woman He saved from stoning to “Go and sin no more.” I believe that is what God is saying to the church at Laodicea and to us today.