Summary: The sixth in a series of seven messages on the seven churches of Asia Minor, specifially the church at Philadelphia
Sermon By: Dr. Todd Morris
Title: The Church of the Open Door
Text: Revelation 3:7-13
Date: June 11, 2006
Intro. We are continuing to move through the letters that Jesus wrote to the seven churches in the book of Revelation. So far we have looked at five churches, and this morning we come to the church at Philadelphia. I would call this the “model church.” Just as Christ had no good thing to say about Sardis, he has no condemnation of the church at Philadelphia. He begins saying good things and does so throughout the letter.
If there is a church among the seven that I believe that Abney is most like it is the church at Philadelphia. Remember that we said when we began this series that all of these letters may be looked at in three ways. Practically, the letters are written to real churches. Prophetically, each church represents a different period of church history, and personally, there is a message for every church in existence in these letters.
Let’s see what the Savior has to say to the church at Abney as He writes to the church at Philadelphia. He writes of:
I THE CHURCH AND HER MASTER (7-8A)
A. The Master’s Attributes
1. The Sinless One
2. The Sincere One
B. The Master’s Authority
1. He Has The Keys - Isaiah 22:20-25 tells us that he who has the key of David has the full authority of God.
a. He Has The Key To Sleep (Rev. 1:18)- that is death. You can’t even die until He opens the door, and if you know Him you can’t stay dead.
b. He Has The Key To Suffering (Rev. 1:18) – Only He can open Heaven and shut Hell.
c. He Has The Key To Salvation (John 4:12) – Only He can open the door of eternal life.
d. He Has The Key To Service (I Corinthians 16:9) – He decides when we serve, where we serve, and how long we serve.
e. He Has The Key To Safety (Col. 3:3) – No one can touch those who are in His care
2. He Controls The Doors – Jesus is in the business of opening and closing doors in the lives of people.
C. The Master’s Appraisal – Jesus reminds them that He knows everything about them.
II THE CHURCH AND HER MINISTRY (8B-11)
A. Their Ministry Involved Opportunities (8) – Jesus chose to give this church many wonderful opportunities for service. Why?
1. They Had Kept His Word – Doctrinal Integrity
2. They Had Not Denied His Name
B. Their Ministry Involved Opposition (9)
C. Their Ministry Involved Optimism (10)
D. Their Ministry Involved Obligations (11) – They are told to watch two things:
1. Watch For Jesus to Return
2. Watch Their Walk
III THE CHURCH AND HER MESSAGE (12)
A. A Message of Stability
B. A Message of Security
Conclusion: This morning I am thankful that I pastor a Philadelphia type church. Of all the churches in these two chapters, Abney is more like the church at Philadelphia than any of the others. We are blessed and should never take that for granted. The Lord has given us much, and there will be many more opportunities down the road.
So here is God’s invitation this morning: If you are lost and want to come to Jesus you come. If you are saved, but haven’t been watching and you know that you are in danger of losing your rewards, you come. If you are thankful to be a part of a great church, and just want to thank God and ask Him to help us to stay true to Him, you come.
These words of our precious savior should motivate us to serve Him until He comes.