The Encouragement of an Open Door
|1.deceit. Jesus knew the Samaritan woman’s works before he ever met her. When he asked her to go get her husband. She said, “I have no husband”. He said, you have answered well, you’ve had 5 and even the one you got now ain’t yours. Jesus knows all about us. · If you only come to church on the Sundays you do something … He knows.· If you only support the programs you or someone in your family is involved in … He knows.· If you like having a title but don’t want to held accountable for work that goes along with the title … He knows .· He knows if we’ve been faithful … He knows if we’ve been true. 2. But He also knows when we are weak and weary with well-doing. I can hear our Lord saying … I KNOW you have little power … I KNOW the storms of life have worn you down … I KNOW you given your best and your best wasn’t good enough … BEHOLD … I have set before you an open door.I have made a way for you where there was no way.I have placed an opportunity before you where there was no opportunity. Be encouraged … because of my identity … I am alpha and the omega; the beginning and end. I am the king of kings and Lord of Lords. I am the lion of the tribe of Judah and the captain of the hosts of heaven. But most importantly I am the one who opens doors that no one closes and closes doors that no one opens. Be encouraged … because of my authority … I am the one who has the key of David. I am the one who grants and prevents access to the kingdom of God.Be encouraged ... because of my capacity … because of what I know I have placed before you an open You have an open door …|
|THE IMPORTANCE OF DOORS!Doors are important. Doors and doorways are places of transition. We move through them to get to the inside or the outside. We move through them to get into another room, state of being, or mode of existence. Doors can hide or reveal; exclude or include; discourage or encourage – it all depends upon whether the door is closed or open. A closed door hides. It keeps those on the outside from seeing or hearing what’s going on inside. Country music singer Charlie Rich used to sing a song titled Behind Closed Doors. And when we get behind closed doorsThen she lets her hair hang downAnd she makes me glad that I'm a manOh, no-one knows what goes on behind closed doors. A closed door excludes. It prevents the unauthorized from certain places and spaces. We as a people know something about closed doors. Not very long ago we were not authorized to enter certain businesses and establishments because of the color of our skin. Signs were posted above the doors of movie theatres and restaurants which read “No Negroes” and “No Colored Allowed”. A closed door discourages. It says to would-be entrants in no uncertain terms – “you keep a knockin but you can’t come in”. It discourages because it represents the absence of an opportunity. When the opportunity for a romance that might have been no longer exists, we say “that door is closed”. When the opportunity to land a job we might have landed no longer exists, we say “that door is closed.” And when the clock struck 12:00 a.m. on the morning of January 1st in the year 2009, we could all say of the year 2008, “that door is closed!” Whatever unrealized dreams and aspirations; whatever unfulfilled hopes and plans you had for 2008; “that door is closed!” But the good news is that where one door closes another opens. The good news is that just because it did not come to pass in 2008 doesn’t mean it won’t come to pass. 2008 is gone, but here we are on the first Sunday of a brand new year with an open door. Here we are with fresh opportunity. Here we are with another chance to get it right. I didn’t consummate in eight but in nine it will be mine. This morning we ought to be encouraged, because we have an open door. Just as a closed door hides, an open door reveals. Just as a closed door excludes, an open door includes. Just as a closed door discourages; an open door encourages. In our text this morning we have the encouragement of an open door. (read verses 7-8) WE SHOULD BE ENCOURAGED BY THE IDENTITY OF THE ONE WHO OPENS DOORS!The addressed: This letter is addressed to the angel or the messenger of the church in Philadelphia. The letter is addressed to the one responsible|
|The Encouragement Of An Open Door! (Revelation 3:7-8)|
| #. for the faithful delivery of the Word of God to the people of God. The angel of the house has the responsibility of delivering the Word of God to God’s people. And the content of the message depends upon the conduct of the house. If the house is in order, then the content of the message contains no condemnation. But if the house is not in order, then the message must call the house to order. Of the 7 churches (Ephesus, Smyrna, Pergamum, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia, and Laodicea), only 2 received no condemnation – Smyrna and Philadelphia.
#. The addressor: We know the addressed but who is the addressor. The human agent used to write this letter is the apostle John who wrote this letter during his exile on the aisle of Patmos. But the true author is our Lord, Jesus Christ. It is our Lord Himself who commands John to record his pronouncements to the seven churches. It is our Lord Himself who describes Himself with divine designations. It is our Lord Himself who uses titles that are set aside by the Jews as titles of God the Father. God the Father is the Holy One of Israel. For in Isaiah 40:25, God the Father is described as the Holy One who asks, “whom then will you liken Me, whom shall I be equal?” God the Father is the true one of Israel. He the one to whom the martyred souls cried out in Revelation 6:10, “How long, O Lord, holy and true, until you avenge our blood n those who dwell on the earth.” But in Revelation 3:7 it is God the Son who describes Himself as the One who is holy and true. It is Jesus who describes himself with divine designations.
The same Jesus who was born of a virgin named Mary. The same Jesus who was raised in the home of a carpenter named Joseph. The same Jesus who walked the dusty streets of Palestine doing good and spreading good news. The same Jesus who was tried, crucified, and buried in a borrowed tomb. When his enemies closed the door of his tomb they thought they were done with Jesus. But on that third day morning a door that they had closed had been miraculously opened. Not to let Jesus out, but to let witnesses inside to discover the truth that there’s no door that can hold Jesus in. Aren’t you glad about the identity of the one who opens doors? WE SHOULD BE ENCOURAGED BY THE AUTHORITY OF THE ONE WHO OPENS DOORSNot only is Jesus the holy one and the true one, Jesus is also the one who has the key of David. Just as Eliakim carried the keys of the house of David in the court of Hezekiah, so does Jesus in the kingdom of God. All authority has been given to Jesus to admit |
| 1.and exclude from the kingdom of God. That’s why he said to his disciples in Matthew 28:18 “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth.” In other words I have authority to open doors that no one can close and to close doors that no one can open. 2. I spoke of a time in this very nation when certain doors were closed to us as people of color. At one time the door to professional sports was closed to African Americans. At one time the door to certain skilled trades was closed to African Americans. At one time the door to the corporate boardroom was closed to African Americans. And at one time the door to certain political offices was closed to African Americans. But thanks be to God, although there are still a number of closed doors, many which were once closed have been opened. And on January 20, of this year the first African American, President Elect Barack Obama will be sworn in as the next president of the United States of America. And we dare not make the mistake of thinking we did it for ourselves. For, I am convinced that his winning the election is a testament to the authority of the one who opens doors no man can close and closes those no man can open. · So the next time it seems like the doors of progress have closed, in your face. Don’t you dare give up! Don’t you dare give in! Why don’t you just steal away and go down on your knees … tell God … have mercy please … Come on Jesus … come on Jesus … come on Jesus …and see about me!· I know you have authority to open doors no man can close and to close those no man can open. .· NOT ONLY SHOULD WE BE ENCOURAGED BY THE IDENTITY, AND AUTHORITY OF THE ONE WHO OPENS DOORS WE SHOULD BE ENCOURAGED BY THE CAPACITY OF THE ONE WHO OPENS DOORSHigh five two people and say JESUS KNOWS! The way HE knows differs from the way WE know. We know in part; He knows in full. We know with a finite capacity; but He knows with infinite capacity. Our minds have limited capacity to acquire, store, and retrieve information. But HIS mind knows all that is knowable. He knows our works: Jesus knew the church’s works. He knew this church had been faithful. He knew this church had been true. He knew this church had kept his word and not denied his name. He knows if we have been faithful. He knows if we have been true. He knows whether we have kept his word and He knows if we’ve taken as stand for Him. And we won’t hear well done unless we’ve done well. Jesus knew Nathanael’s works before his brother Philip ever made the introduction. As Nathanael approached him he said, Behold an Israelite in whom is no |