Doors. What do they speak of? Entering. Exiting. Opening. Closing. Hiding behind. Covering up. Locking. Unlocking. There are large doors, small doors, right doors and wrong doors. The one thing that I know about doors is that they should be open, welcoming and friendly. They should never be shut or slammed on anyone. They should be a point of entry into a safe place.
What does scripture say about doors?
Let’s take a look and see!
Exodus 12:7 Pertaining to the Passover
7They must take some of the blood and put it on the sides and tops of the doorframes of the houses where they will eat the animals…
The blood was a sign to God to PASS OVER the house and that the plague would not affect those in the home.
1 “Most assuredly, I say to you, he who does not enter the sheepfold by the door, but climbs up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber. 2 But he who enters by the door is the shepherd of the sheep. 3 To him the doorkeeper opens, and the sheep hear his voice; and he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. 4 And when he brings out his own sheep, he goes before them; and the sheep follow him, for they know his voice. 5 Yet they will by no means follow a stranger, but will flee from him, for they do not know the voice of strangers.” 6 Jesus used this illustration, but they did not understand the things which He spoke to them 7 Then Jesus said to them again, “Most assuredly, I say to you, I am the door of the sheep. 8 All whoever came before Me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not hear them. 9 I am the door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture.
Then Jews from Antioch and Iconium came there; and having persuaded the multitudes, they stoned Paul and dragged him out of the city, supposing him to be dead. 20 However, when the disciples gathered around him, he rose up and went into the city. And the next day he departed with Barnabas to Derbe. 21 And when they had preached the gospel to that city and made many disciples, they returned to Lystra, Iconium, and Antioch, 22 strengthening the souls of the disciples, exhorting them to continue in the faith, and saying, “We must through many tribulations enter the kingdom of God.” 23 So when they had appointed elders in every church, and prayed with fasting, they commended them to the Lord in whom they had believed. 24 And after they had passed through Pisidia, they came to Pamphylia. 25Now when they had preached the word in Perga, they went down to Attalia. 26 From there they sailed to Antioch, where they had been commended to the grace of God for the work which they had completed. 27 Now when they had come and gathered the church together, they reported all that God had done with them, and that He had opened the door of faith to the Gentiles. 28 So they stayed there a long time with the disciples.
1 Corinthians 16:9
For a great and effective door has opened to me,
and there are many adversaries.
from Matthew Henry Commentary on 1 Cor. 16:9
Because a great door, and effectual, was opened to him, and there were many adversaries, 1 Cor. 16:9. A great door and effectual was opened to him; many were prepared to receive the gospel at Ephesus, and God gave him great success among them; he had brought over many to Christ, and he had great hope of bringing over many more. For this reason he determined to stay awhile at Ephesus. Note, Success, and a fair prospect of more, was a just reason to determine an apostle to stay and labour in a particular place. And there were many adversaries, because a great door, and an effectual, was opened. Note, Great success in the work of the gospel commonly creates many enemies. The devil opposes those most, and makes them most trouble, who most heartily and successfully set themselves to destroy his kingdom. There were many adversaries; and therefore the apostle determined to stay. Some think he alludes in this passage to the custom of the Roman Circus, and the doors of it, at which the charioteers were to enter, as their antagonists did at the opposite doors. True courage is whetted by opposition; and it is no wonder that the Christian courage of the apostle should be animated by the zeal of his adversaries. They were bent to ruin him, and prevent the effect of his ministry at Ephesus; and should he at this time desert his station, and disgrace his character and doctrine? No, the opposition of adversaries only animated his zeal. He was in nothing daunted by his adversaries; but the more they raged and opposed the more he exerted himself. Should such a man as he flee? Note, Adversaries and opposition do not break the spirits of faithful and successful ministers, but only enkindle their zeal, and inspire them with fresh courage. Indeed, to labour in vain is heartless and discouraging. This damps the spirits, and breaks the heart. But success will give life and vigour to a minister, though enemies rage, and blaspheme, and persecute. It is not the opposition of enemies, but the hardness and obstinacy of his hearers, and the backslidings and revolt of professors, that damp a faithful minister, and break his heart.
The Message (MSG)
20-21“Look at me. I stand at the door. I knock. If you hear me call and open the door, I’ll come right in and sit down to supper with you. Conquerors will sit alongside me at the head table, just as I, having conquered, took the place of honor at the side of my Father. That’s my gift to the conquerors!
1 Then I looked, and, oh!—a door open into Heaven. The trumpet-voice, the first voice in my vision, called out, “Ascend and enter. I’ll show you what happens next.”
You know it’s interesting that I have painted these doors this very week. God has used this time to remind me of why it is so important for us to go out and knock on doors and invite people to church, pray for people, and just let people know that we, the body of Christ, care. No one wants to be left out, no one wants to be alone and no one wants a door shut on them. I’ve spoken of this before and it’s just one of those moments that you never forget- a defining moment. I shut the door on someone once and it is something I’ll never do again. From the moment the door “clicked” shut I was convicted. Jesus says He is the door of the sheep. He is the door, we are the sheep. His door is always open. Mine should be too, and it has been ever since that convicting click of the door passed over my eardrum and entered my soul. Seems like a little thing doesn’t it? It might be to you or me but to the person on the other side of that door-it’s a big deal. They can’t get in. Can you imagine not being able to get in?
I can. I had another defining moment today at work. I got locked into a room and couldn’t get out. I had a key-but it wasn’t on me. Luckily I found a side door that was open and got out that way. Not really a big deal-but it made me think about people who are locked up in prison, in chains, in fear, in loneliness, depression and on and on. I was startled for a moment and I said, ” oh no, how am I going to get out of here? I am locked IN!!” well, I wouldn’t make a very good prisoner because I didn’t like the feeling at all! I either had to have a key or a door that was open. Interesting, isn’t it?
So let me ask you this….are your doors open and are you ready to invite people IN to receive radical hope, love and grace like never before?
If they are- join us this Saturday as we go INto the community- a community of doors-to INvite people to begin, rekindle or renew a relationship with their Lord and Savior! Meet us at OOTBWC at 10 am, Saturday, June 11, 2011.
See you there!
( and you thought I was just painting….!!!!)