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"Let My Love
Open the Door"
Therefore Jesus said again, "Very truly I tell you, I am the door for the sheep. All who have come before me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep have not listened to them. I am the door; whoever enters through me will be saved.They will come in and go out, and find pasture. The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full." John 10:7-10
Dear Members and Friends,
As I have the honor of occupying our pulpit this Sunday, we ponder the words of Jesus. In the passage above, Jesus is using agricultural analogies typical of the time in which He lived-concepts that would be well understood by his contemporaries. Jesus, in this passage, is reiterating something that He stated in the gospels on multiple occasions: He, as Son of God and Son of Man, is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. No person comes to the Father except through Him (John 14:6).
The passage above, in which Jesus likens Himself and His own ministry to that of a gate or a door that provides safe passage between the world and the Father for those who are elect and believe, reminds us of other Bible passages. One such passage is 2 Peter 1:3: "By his divine power, God has given us everything we need for living a godly life. We have received all of this by coming to know him, the one who called us to himself by means of his marvelous glory and excellence." It is by an intimate knowledge of Christ that we enter into a relationship with God Himself.
A more obscure passage, one that is rarely preached on, is one in which Jesus shows His role as mediator by reiterating the story of Jacob's ladder. In the story of Jacob's ladder, the angels of God "ascend and descend" upon the ladder, floating down to a sleeping Jacob and floating up to the likeness of God in heaven. Some early Rabbinical literature has an interesting take on this episode. Their view is that the angels of God were comparing, in bewilderment, why the likeness of God on the throne in heaven (a man) looked so much like Jacob asleep on the ground (a man). This acted as a spring board for early Christian interpretations of Jacob's ladder, in which the early Fathers suggested that the angels of God were ascending and descending on the ladder, actually comparing notes on the features of Jesus's face (the man on the throne in heaven), and Jacob's face (the man asleep on the ground)!
Jesus, by contrast, in His dialogue with Nathaniel, states something interesting in John 1:51. The passage says: He (Jesus) then added, "Very truly I tell you, you will see 'heaven open, and the angels of God ascending and descending on the Son of Man." Here, Jesus is equating Himself not only with the Son of Man, but He is saying that He Himself is the ladder between ea
rth and heaven! Jesus, by His death on the cross, is the One-the only One, who provides passage to heaven. Jesus is both the God-Man on the throne, and the ladder that gets us to the throne.
So what does this mean for us? It means that we have refuge. We have a passageway, a door, a Stairway to Heaven. We simply need to take a step on it (by grace), and we have acc
ss to God and to the kingdom of God. What an amazing gift! One that cannot be earned, purchased, or merited in any way.
Jesus, as God, to
re the veil between a broken humanity and the Holy of Holies-God's very presence. And through Jesus' de
ath on the cross, His very Person acts as our aton
ement, and our access to the Father.
I pray that this truth and reality is encouraging to you, a
s you go about your business this day. Don't forget to thank Jes
us for being the Way, the ladder, and the door, because of His grea
t love for us.
This illustration is
Orthodox Icon of the Vision of the Ladder of Jacob.
Here we notice Jesus Himself is in Heaven at the top of the Ladder.
"He had a dream in which he saw a stairway resting on the earth, with its top reaching to heaven, and the angels of God were ascending and descending on it." Genesis 28:12
As a reminder, please commit to pray for our Kenya Mission Team over the next few weeks as they embark on their journey July 28 - August 10. Pray for safety, protection, health, guidance, unity, and the ability to fulfill God's mission and the Great Commission of Jesus Christ as they minister in East Kano.
There is a list below of prayer concerns below.
Your brother in Christ,
PRAYER CONCERNS FOR KENYA MISSION
- God's financial provision, as we are yet to meet our target.
- The unity of the East Kano Pastors, that they have a heart for sharing the gospel and disciple the new believers. . If people are saved without proper follow-up, our work will be in vain.
- That lives of the people of East Kano will be touched through the gospel in a very powerful way leading to salvation, healing, deliverance and revival.
- That the projects will be a channel through which the community of East Kano experiences the love of Christ. That the planning and implementation of these projects are successful.
- Pray that the Lord keeps us healthy, safe, and secure, and that He uses us for His glory. Pray for all the ministers who participate. And that the Lord anoints all the ministers who are participating, in a very special way.
- Pray for unity and good working relations between our team and local pastors, church leaders etc.
- Pray for all the logistics involved the accommodations, catering, crusades, transportation, and the needed equipment.
- Pray that many people in East Kano will attend the meetings and that they will have a hunger for the Word of God.
- Pray that the Lord provides rain for water, but holds it back during the time of the mission trip, so that we will be able to conduct open air meetings and be transported without difficulty.
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