Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Life (06/15/06)
TITLE: THE DOOR
By Frank Parrino
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Have you ever noticed how we are surrounded by doors? Doors are part and parcel of life. Consider your house or apartment. There are front, back, side, closet, cellar, cabinet, and appliance doors. There are doors on trains, planes, buses, and cars. We find doors in the offices we work at, the stores we shop, and the churches where we worship. Beside these physical and tangible means of access, there is also the figurative door found for example in the expression, “opportunity knocks.” One may find an opening for a job or a deal on a new car. The Bible also has its share of doors both of the literal and figurative kind. Consider these later doors. Such convey vital spiritual truths to us. We find doors to our lips, heart, the heavenly wedding feast, service, and evangelism. People are always encountering doors in life.
There is however one crucial and exacting door. THE DOOR is He who is the Way, the Truth, and the Life, the Lord Jesus Christ. Jesus declares, “I am the door; if anyone enters through Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture” (John 10:9 NASB). His apostles confirm the great importance and narrow way to THE DOOR by affirming, “ And there is salvation in no one else; for there is no other name under heaven that has been given among men by which we must be saved” (Acts 4:21 NASB). Jesus Christ is the only door to salvation. How do we enter? This sacred door rests upon two hinges: repentance and faith.
First we must face the reality of our own personal sin. We have offended the holy and righteous God who is our Creator and Lawgiver. We have waved the red flag of rebellion in the face of the Almighty by breaking His Law and serving sin and self. Like the prodigal who rebelled against the government of his father, we are broken and come to our senses. We acknowledge we have sinned against our Father and will go to Him seeking mercy. Convinced of our sins, we come just as we are, in all of our pollution and guilt. We come to our Heavenly Father by THE DOOR of Life. To enter, we must repent and believe. Jesus Himself declared from the beginning of His ministry, “Repent and believe in the gospel” (Mark 1:15). What is the gospel duty of repentance? Repentance means to turn. We are on the wide road of sin which leads to the destruction of our soul and eternal woe. When our eyes are opened by the wondrous grace of God’s call, we do an about face. Repentance is to be truly sorry for our sin, hating it, turning from sin to God unto the narrow and straight way marked by the sign posts: Obedience and Service to God.
What is the gospel duty of faith? Faith is the conviction of the truth of the gospel and commitment to the Christ of the gospel. God’s gracious remedy for sin is centered in the Person and cross of Jesus Christ. Jesus came into the world to save sinners and to give us life in all its fullness. The Lord Jesus Christ, who knew no sin, stood in our place as our substitute. He bore the full wrath of God and paid in full the penalty our sins justly deserved. The hymn writer said, “Jesus sought me when a stranger; wandering from the fold of God. He to rescue me from danger; interposed His precious blood.” Faith is belief in the truth as it is in Jesus and trusting Him alone as our Savior from sin and Lord of our life. If you say you believe then your life will be radically altered by the truths of the gospel. If you say you trust Christ then your life will be wholly committed to Him as Savior and Lord. Real repentance and faith will produce real love for God which in turn will produce real obedience to Jesus Christ.
Life is short. Death is sure. Sin is the curse. Christ is the cure. Have I entered THE DOOR on God’s terms? No? Don’t despair! Jesus is still the same almighty Savior of sinners. Go to Him man, woman, boy, and girl. Enter into the meaningful and purposeful life in Christ both now and in the age to come. Amen.
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