(Adapted from the Men's Breakfast Devotional delivered by Pastor Lee Athey 5/18/19)

Revelation 3:7-8

7 "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. 8 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.

The Open DoorIn the Revelation to the churches, Jesus gives the church in Philadelphia both praise and a challenge. He says: “I know your deeds.” This implies that he has granted an opportunity to these believers because they are living right lives for Christ. The opportunity he is about to afford them then, is a type of reward for faithfulness to Christ.

What is that reward? He tells them that he has opened a door for them; meaning a spiritual door. It is an open door of opportunity for faithfulness to the Lord that will yield great ministerial fruit.

Lives will be reached and changed by the gospel.

The broken will find an opportunity for rebuilding and restoration.

The hurting will find an avenue for hope and healing.

The lost will find the pathways of genuine and unconditional love.

Jesus tells them that because of their faithfulness to him, he was granting them a spiritual opportunity to make an eternal difference in their community for Christ.

We find some noteworthy considerations in this passage.

First, this spiritual opportunity is a doorway that Christ has opened; it hasn’t come about by the efforts, the dreams and visions, or the strength of man. Because God has opened this door of opportunity, no man can close it: it remains available. He said, “I have opened a door that no one can shut.” Jesus holds the keys, the master set, the only set of keys to this door he has opened.

Next we note that this opportunity wasn’t given necessarily to the highly skilled and gifted; those trained and theologically practiced at taking advantage of such an opportunity. He said: “I know that you have little strength. There are no prerequisites for stepping up to meet the challenge God is offering here. The challenge is to anyone who is available to accept it.

Third we find the requirements for success in this opportunity: obedience and faithfulness. That is all that is required to succeed in what God has purposed; all that is needed to see a harvest of spiritual produce.

Finally we note that while no one can close this door of opportunity that Jesus has granted his faithful followers; the work of healing, hope, restoration, rebuilding, rescue and redemption can still be thwarted if the church simply refuses to walk through that open door of opportunity.

The doorway is opened for the believer to step through and simply faithfully obey. The lost will never inadvertently stumble through this open door. This is a challenge to the church to take advantage of the grace that Jesus has provided for, prepared for, and paid for.

Step through the open door!