Happy Tuesday, December 1, 2015.
As we enter yet another week, Juliet’s and my thoughts and prayers are with you.
When Jesus said in John 10:9, “I am the door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture,’” what did he mean? How can He be the door? Where does every fallen creature ultimately need to enter into? What caused every fallen creature to be on the outside of the door? What happens when a person walks from the outside, through the door to the inside? All these questions seem very complicated, but really and truly, Jesus gave a very simple analogy of how to come to His Father. His Father is the provider of the fold where the sheep find safe shelter. Jesus is the good shepherd who leads and protects the sheep. He also is the door through which the sheep enter into the fold.
How can Jesus be the door? In John 14:6, Jesus says, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.” This scripture puts Jesus’ analogy of Him being the door in context—If no one can come to the Father except through Him, then we understand His role in the plan of Salvation. Jesus was sent down to the earth to open up a way for mankind to be able to reenter the presence of God. Due to having fallen into sin, mankind was literally ‘shut-out,’ from garden of Eden and from the presence of God. Sin separated mankind from God. It put mankind on the outside. Now, through Jesus’ entrance into the world, through His birth, His life, His death and His resurrection, the way has been opened for mankind to reenter God’s presence.
Sin could not stand in God’s presence. The brilliance and majesty of God’s presence would literally vaporize anyone with a taint of sin on them. Jesus was sent to the earth to take on the sin of the world on Himself. He absorbed the sin from mankind so that mankind could be sinless and reenter into God’s presence. When Jesus said that mankind could come to the Father through Him, could He possibly be implying that He takes all the sin from those who entered through Him? In other words, as we enter through Jesus ‘the door,’ He strips us of our sin and takes it all onto Himself. Almost like a dirty car going through the cleaning rollers of a car wash---it enters filthy and emerges on the other side, sparkling clean.
In the same way, Jesus came to absorb sin from us onto Himself. He took the sin of the world onto Himself causing separation from His Father, both of which killed Him. The door that shut Adam and Eve from the Garden of Eden was replaced by Jesus and opened up for mankind to reenter into God’s presence. The very thing that prevented mankind from being in God’s presence, Jesus took onto Himself so that mankind could be restored back the place they were before they fell into sin. When a member of the human race responds God’s call to be reconciled, their sin is removed by the ‘sin-absorbing door,’ and they can come boldly to God’s throne, unafraid, unashamed and unwavering.
What is the alternative to entering into God’s presence through the door? Well, climbing over the wall, right? Those who refuse to admit their helplessness in overcoming their sin, will make attempts to come into God’s presence through their own efforts. They see God as a taskmaster with a checklist of good or bad deeds which determine whether or not they are given permission to enter into His presence or not. In contrast, those who realize their absolute inability to do even one good deed or think one good thought in their own strength, humbly surrender to entering, by faith in their Savior, through Jesus Christ and His merits. The following quote from the book, ‘Desire of Ages,’ by Ellen G. White, p.473, summarizes this thought perfectly:
“Christ is the door to the fold of God. Through this door all His children, from the earliest times, have found entrance. In Jesus, as shown in types, as shadowed in symbols, as manifested in the revelation of the prophets, as unveiled in the lessons given to His disciples, and in the miracles wrought for the sons of men, they have beheld “the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world” (John 1:29), and through Him they are brought within the fold of His grace. Many have come presenting other objects for the faith of the world; ceremonies and systems have been devised by which men hope to receive justification and peace with God, and thus find entrance to His fold. But the only door is Christ, and all who have interposed something to take the place of Christ, all who have tried to enter the fold in some other way, are thieves and robbers.”
Is it easy or is it difficult to enter into God’s presence through this door? My friend, it’s the easiest thing in the world to do. Just walk though by faith. God has already called you to walk through. All you have to do is answer, “yes Lord, by faith I am accepting your invitation and here I come, by the blood of Jesus, into Your presence.” Many will say, “well, I have to first give up my swearing, or my smoking, or my immoral life.” The bible says that that is not the case. “While we were yet sinners, Christ died for the ungodly.” Romans 5. No, by faith, the worst sinner, rapist, murderer, drug dealer, or child molester can walk boldly through that door into God’s presence.
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