Summary: Has God opened a door of opportunity to you ? Then seize the moment! Step out in faith and experience all God has designed to bless you with.
Many of you will remember the game show “let’s make a deal”. In this game show the show’s host, Monty Hall, would often give people the option of choosing what was behind 3 doors. The reason I draw this to your attention is because the Lord Jesus opened a door of opportunity to the church in Philadelphia. Join me in seeing what the Lord Jesus had to say to this sixth church about the “open door of opportunity” in Revelation 3:7-12. READ.
Many scholars believe these seven churches represent dispensations or ages of church history. Under that premise, this church at Philadelphia would be 1700 and 1800’s. This time period was when a major thrust was made in mission work around the world. This was the beginning of the modern missionary movement because a door was opened to do it.
In Matthew 16:18 Jesus told His disciples He held the keys of the kingdom. He has all authority to open and close doors as it fits His perfect will.
Back in verse 7 Jesus identified Himself to the congregation as the one who has the Key of David. Jesus will unlock the hearts and souls of people who are ready and willing to respond to the gospel. Jesus wants to unlock you from depression, discouragement, and other prisons Satan or the world has put you in.
Warren Wiersbe accessed the situation this way “unbelief sees obstacles; faith sees opportunities”. What kind of door has God opened or closed for you since the first of the year? If God has opened a door for you, then seize the moment and move through the door He has opened for you.
This concept of open doors is used in other texts in the NT as well:
• I Corinthians 16:9 “because a great door for effective work has opened to me”
• 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”
• Colossians 4:3 “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”
A shy, timid man prayed one morning, Lord, lead me to someone to witness to today. Give me a sign who it is.
The man got on the bus to travel to his job. At the next stop a big burly man got on the bus. The man sat in the same seat with the Christian who prayed for someone to witness to. It was very strange this big burly man would sit by the Christian because the bus was completely empty. They had not traveled far when the big burly man began to cry. He put his crying face in his hands and said “God I have sinned against you and need to be saved”. Then the big burly man turned to the timid Christian and asked “Can you tell me how to be saved?” The timid Christian prayed and asked the Lord, “Is this a sign that I should witness to him?”
May God help each of us to see and recognize the signs and open doors He has given us!
Let me give you two reasons why God put this open door before the Philadelphia church:
1. They had kept God’s Word. They had been true to God and the teachings of His Word. In some of the other churches they were criticized for compromise and false teaching, but this church had not yielded to those temptations.
2. They had not denied Jesus’ name. These disciples were persecuted there just like in the other cities, yet they had not crumbled under the pressure to the Jewish opposition. In verse 9 we find similar wording to what we saw earlier with the church in Smyrna that there was a synagogue of Satan. Jesus calls these Jews liars. Historians believe Jesus uses the word “liars” in two ways. One, these people were Jews by nationality and race and culture, but not in faith. In that they were liars to their chosen nation by God. The second way they were liars is that they told lies about the Christians. This is why Jesus was going to punish them by having them fall at their feet in humility and shame. In verse 7 Jesus identified Himself to this church as the one who is holy and true. In contrast to the lying and deception of the Jews, the truth of God stands out. Jesus is holy and the genuine Messiah.
Principles we ought to keep in mind when God opens doors for Yuma Church:
1. We should pray that God would open doors of evangelism and ministry to the church so we can fulfill our purpose. Also pray that God would help us recognize when and where He has opened the door.