Summary: In Revelation, Jesus tells the Church at Philadelphia that He is opening a door for them which no one can shut. This is a door of favor, spiritual growth, and opportunity to witness. He'll open that same door for us if we desire it!
DOORS OF DESTINY
1. Late one night, a mugger wearing a ski mask jumped into the path of a well-dressed man and stuck a gun in his ribs. “Give me your money,” he demanded.
Indignant, the affluent man replied, “You can’t do this, I’m a politician!” “In that case,” replied the robber, “give me MY money!”
2. A frantic-looking woman came rushing out of her house and into the street crying, “Help! Help! My young son has swallowed a quarter and is choking and I don’t know what to do!”
Everyone looked the other way, except for a middle-aged gentleman who rushed into the ladies house, found her young son, turned him upside down and shook him until the coin fell out of his mouth.
“Oh, thank you!” cried the lady. “Are you a doctor?” “No ma’am,” replied the middle-aged man. “I work for the Internal Revenue Service.”
B. FUNNY EPISODES WITH PET DOORS
1. Cat refuses to let Dog in Pet Door (.15)
2. Chubby Cat comes thru Door (.23)
3. Raccoon Comes through the door (1:32)
4. We’re going to read about a Door God wants us to go through in the Book of Revelations.
Revelation 3:7-8 “To the angel of the church in Philadelphia write: These are the words of Him who is holy and true, who holds the key of David. What He opens no one can shut, and what He shuts no one can open. I know your deeds. See, I have placed before you an open door that no one can shut. I know that you have little strength, yet you have kept my word and have not denied my name.”
D. IDENTIFYING THE “OPEN DOOR”
1. The Church at Philadelphia was a church for which Christ had no correction. It was a persecuted Church.
2. To them was given the singular promise given to Eliakim son of Hilkiah in Isaiah 22:22, replacing Shebna as caretaker of the House of God. God would “open a door that no man could shut.”
3. WHAT IS THIS PROMISE?
a. Not necessarily of financial prosperity;
b. Nor “ “ constant happiness;
c. Not of being popular with the World;
d. Or of always having perfect health.
The Philadelphia Church didn’t have all those things.
4. It was the Promise of a). God’s Favor, of b). spiritual growth into the likeness of Christ, and c). of opportunities to share Christ.
5. HOW WAS THE PHRASE “OPEN DOOR” USED IN THE NEW TESTAMENT?
a. Acts 14:27 “On arriving there, they gathered the church together and reported all that God had done through them and how he had opened the door of faith to the Gentiles.”
b. 1 Corinthians 16:9 “because a great door for effective work has opened to me, and there are many who oppose me.”
c. 2 Corinthians 2:12 “Now when I went to Troas to preach the gospel of Christ and found that the Lord had opened a door for me”
d. Colossians 4:3 “And pray for us, too, that God may open a door for our message, so that we may proclaim the mystery of Christ, for which I am in chains.”
6. DOOR (defined); “a usually swinging or sliding barrier by which an entry is closed and opened”; “a means of access or participation; opportunity: “opens new door” “door to success.”
E. THESIS & TITLE
1. Jesus ended His prophecy to the Philadelphian Church, “Whoever has ears, let them hear what the Spirit says to the CHURCHES” Rev. 3:13. So this promise of an “open door” is not only for them, but for believers today!
2. We’re looking this morning at the “Doors of Destiny” that Jesus wants to open for us!
I. MISSING THE DOOR OF OPPORTUNITY
1. In his autobiography, Just as I Am, Billy Graham tells about a conversation he had with John F. Kennedy shortly after his election:
“On the way back to the Kennedy house, the president-elect stopped the car and turned to me. QUES. ‘Do you believe in the Second Coming of Jesus Christ?’ he asked. ANSWER:‘I most certainly do.’
QUES. ‘Well, does my church believe it?’ ANSWER: ‘They have it in their creeds.’
QUES. ‘They don’t preach it,’ he said. ‘They don’t tell us much about it. I’d like to know what you think.’
2. I explained what the Bible said about Christ coming the first time, dying on the Cross, rising from the dead, and then promising that he would come back again. ‘Only then,’ I said, ‘are we going to have permanent world peace.’ PRESIDENT: ‘Very interesting,’ he said, looking away. ‘We’ll have to talk more about that someday.’ And he drove on.”
3. Several years later, the two met again, at the 1963 National Prayer Breakfast. “I had the flu,” Graham remembers. “After I gave my short talk, and he gave his, we walked out of the hotel to his car together, as was always our custom. At the curb, he turned to me. ‘Billy, could you ride back to the White House with me? I’d like to see you for a minute.’