Devotions By Jan

Shut Door

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P1070523Scripture for Today: Rev. 3:8 “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.”

I am standing in front of what is called a “holy door.”  It is found in Saint Peter’s Basilica in the Vatican.  This is one of four holy doors in the papal basilicas of Rome.  In times past it was opened once every hundred years, then every fifty.  Now, it is cemented shut from the inside and only opened at special times at the discretion of the Pope.  It is opened to grant all who pass through a “plenary indulgence.”  According to the Catholic Church tradition, this means a removal of all temporal punishment due to minor sin.

Our verse for today is spoken by Christ to one of the seven churches; Philidelphia.  He commends them for their good deeds and perseverance.  The door to the Kingdom of Heaven is opened to them.  Nothing and no one can shut this door!  Jesus took on Himself all the punishment for sin.  It is only through Christ’s sacrifice that we have access to the Father.

There is a stern warning to the teachers of the Law and the Pharisees.  With their emphasis on works and their rejection of faith in Christ, they shut the door of the Kingdom of Heaven in people’s faces! (Matt. 23:13)  They not only refused to enter themselves but used their influence to keep others from entering.

I am grateful the door of faith in Christ and entrance to Heaven stands open today.  There is still opportunity to enter.  But one day, He will shut that door.  Thank you Lord, for Your patience and grace today to keep that door open.

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