Summary: This is one of three sermons from my respected pastors series.
AN OPEN DOOR
My brothers and my sisters, this week’s Respected Pastors Series sermon by Pastor Maxwell Washington of St Matthews Baptist Church turns our attention to the book of Revelation. Revelation is the most interesting book of the bible, in fact it is the concluding book of the Scriptures which unfolds the great events bringing history to its completion. The word revelation means (disclosure of that which was previously hidden or unknown).
It is often over looked by many, a very important aspect of this book. We often hear many call this book the Revelation of John, when in all it is the Revelation of Jesus Christ. And verse one brings out the truth about this revelation. It says: “The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave unto Him, to show unto His servants things which must shortly come to pass; and He sent and signified it by His angel unto His servant John,”
In putting it into Layman terms it went from God to Christ, to the angels, to John. And in Revelation, Christ is seen in relationship to time as “who is, who was, and who is to come in chapter 1 verse 4. And this book is basically broke down into four parts (1) the church (ch.1: 9-3:22), the tribulation (4:1-19:21), the millennial kingdom (20:1-10), and the eternal state (20:11-22-21), and Christ is presented in this book as the Ruler of the kings of the earth, the Bridegroom and Head of the church, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Lamb that was slain, the High Priest, and the King and Judge. So it was in this book in which Rev. Dr. Maxwell Washington discovered the words to motivate his people to new heights in fellowship, and the third chapter in particular he encouraged his congregation to follow the example of the Church of Philadelphia, to go through that open door that is opened before them.
Verse seven starts off with “And to the angel of the church of Philadelphia write”: The word angel means the messenger or pastor of that church, and then he follows with an accurate description of the Lord Himself. Here He is described as holy, true, and has the key of David, He is the one who opens, and no man is able to shutteth; and he shutteth, and no man can open. I tell you that verse seven describes our Lord accurately.
So, come with me as we examine this text, and hopefully we too can be motivated to go through the door that the Lord has opened for us.
First of all . . .
Pastor Washington cut right to the chase and his first point was to remind us in verse eight that (There is an Open Door to Salvation.)
My first point is also found in verse eight and I would like for you to know that . . .
1. THE LORD KNOWS YOUR WORK (V.8)
“I know thy works”;
The Lord was sending His message to the seven churches. He found in them something good and He also He also found in them something that He had to deal with. For instance Ephesus He said “I know thy works” they could not bear those who were evil, and tried those who said that they were apostles when they were not, and they even had patience, and labored for Christ sake and fainted not. Jesus said “Nevertheless I have somewhat against thee, because though has left thy first love.” (2) To Pergamum He said “I know thy Works.” He knew how they held fast to his name, and had not denied their faith in Him, even after witnessing Antipas being slain they never lost faith. But verse 14 said, But I have a few things against thee, because thou hast there them that hold the doctrine of Balaam,”
(3) Thyatira He said “I know thy works,” they had love, and served well, they had patience and faith. But He said “I have a few things against thee, because you allowed that woman Jezebel, who called herself a prophetess, to teach and to seduce my servants to commit fornication,”
But to Smyrna, Sardis, and Philadelphia He did not have any indictment, Even the last church Laodicea was found neither hot nor cold. But it was this church of Philadelphia that the Lord put before them an open door, and no man can shut. You see the other churches although they had some good outward appearances, fooled the people around them. They had some deep spiritual issues that they could not hide from the Lord, so He gave many of them indictments. We should ask ourselves the question. How does God feel about Salem? Are we outwardly doing all the right stuff, but lacking on spiritual growth? Are we holding dear to our constitutions more than we are holding dear to the Word of God? Would the Lord say to us. I have a few things against thee?