And I tell you, ask, and it will be given you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For every one who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened

Luke 11

Those whom I love, I reprove and chasten; so be zealous and repent. Behold, I stand at the door and knock; if any one hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me.

                                                                        Revelation 3

Both the above passages describe something we all understand very well from our own experience: the situation in which the Lord is on the other side of the door and the door is closed.

How can you have a personal relationship with the Lord Jesus when He is forever on the other side of the door?

- You can't see His face.

- You rarely hear His voice. And when you do, how can you be sure it's His?

- How can you be sure He's even there?

Both these passages imply that a closed-door relationship with God or with His Only Begotten Son, is unsatisfactory, and that anyone who is content to go on living their life on one side of the door while God is on the other, without making any attempt to get that door to open, simply is not serious with God even if he goes to church every Sunday.

If you're satisfied to go on living,

- with the door shut,

- with no clear awareness of God's presence, no vision of God's glory,

no experience of God's power, no hearing of Jesus' voice, or tasting of His love,

If you're content with that, that's what you're going to have. You'll live in the shadows of your pride and self-idolatry until the light of judgment breaks upon you, and you bow your knee in terror before the Lord.

But to get the door to open - about this, these passages have two very different things to say. In Luke, Jesus says, "knock." You make some effort from your side to let it be known that you really want that door to open. And it will.

''To him who knocks, it will be opened.''

In Revelation, Jesus says, ''I'm knocking from the other side. I'm trying to get you to wake up and let me in. If you will open the door I will come in and eat with you and you with me.''

There was once a man who had a wound in the region of his heart which no physician on earth was able to heal. Ever so slowly this wound, which he dressed carefully every day, was draining his strength. The man knew that if he didn't find healing soon, his life would end.

One day the man was told of a Prince with healing power who was said to live in a cottage down by the river among the poor. So the man set out for the riverside and began knocking on doors.

"I'm looking for the healing Prince who lives in these parts. Could you please tell me where I might find him? I have this wound and have come for....."

"Never heard of him!" they would say, and slam the door in his face.

Finally, he met an old woman who directed him to a weather-beaten house that looked as if it would slide into the river at any moment. The man knocked on the door. No answer. He knocked again. A third time. Suddenly, all by itself, the door swung open and he entered and closed it behind him. There was not a soul inside, but the table was set and a fire was burning in the fireplace.

The man sat down on a bench near the fire. The throbbing pain from his wound had increased tenfold since he stepped inside this cottage. It was becoming so severe he could hardly breathe. As the man clutched his chest and gasped for air, he heard a knock on the door.

"I can't get up and answer that door. I can hardly get my breath."

The knock came again - louder.

''Whoever it is, I wish he would go away. I came here for help, not to be the doorman."

A third time the knock came quite insistently. So the man, clutching his wound with one hand, opened the door with the other and found himself looking into the face of the Prince, who entered and said,

"Come, sit down and eat."

And, as they ate, the man discovered that his pain was gone. His wound had vanished! He was healed!

"'What can I do to show my thanks?" he asked the Prince.

"Bring others to my table."

It's all very well to say God chose us to be His children before the foundation of the world. Or to say God brought us to this moment by His sovereign grace. But those are all empty words so long as God is on one side of the door and we are on the other.

If we're going to have fellowship with the Father and the Son in the Spirit, there are two things we're going to do now and every single day of our lives.

First, we're going to knock on that door. If we're not exercised enough to knock on the door, and keep knocking, the door will remain closed.

While God the Son emptied Himself of His glory and came down among us and shed His blood for our sins - all on His own, without our help - to get near that grace, we're going to do some knocking.

"Lord, have mercy on me. My daughter is severely vexed with a devil."

"Lord, come down and heal my son before he dies !"

"Lord, that I might receive my sight!"

"Lord, if you want to, you can make me clean."

Who knows how many miles they traveled to be able to say those things to Jesus, how many nights they lay awake thinking about it. Or how much pride they swallowed in front of their relatives and friends.

The thief on the cross knocked.

"Lord, remember me when you come into your Kingdom."

There are people reading these words with desperate needs. 0h, you may have some money in the bank, but you know that God is on the other side of the door. And, you're not knocking, you're not crying out. Friend, you're still asleep!

- God isn't going to ram salvation down your throat!

- God isn't going to force eternal life on you if you're content to remain a child of this world.

- Jesus isn't going to come in and set you free from those chains if you're satisfied to be enslaved.

If you really want God to help you today, start knocking on the door.

Praise God for the people who are constantly knocking, all the time crying out to God for the help they know they need, never satisfied. Who take no rest and give God no rest until He establishes Jerusalem and makes her a praise in the earth.

"Lord, you've got to open that door!

"You've got to give us the power to help these crying souls."

"Lord, give us bread to feed those hungry."

To these, the door opens - always. God knows who's serious and who's playing games.

But there's another thing we're going to be doing if we're going to have fellowship with the Father and the Son. When Jesus knock comes from the other side of the door, we are expected to open it.

Those people who cried out to Jesus and got healed were not thereby in the Kingdom. They knocked, the door opened, and they found themselves standing in a room with the table spread. But now, as they stand inside the room, Jesus starts knocking on their door. He starts asking them to do something.

"If any one would come after me, let him deny himself, take up his cross and follow me."

The believers in Laodicea never got around to opening when Jesus knocked on their door. They never got around to picking up their cross. They went to church,

to fellowship,

to prayer meetings and bible studies. But their fruit was choked out by thorns.

"I know your works. You are neither cold nor hot."

They were good at saying, "Lord, Lord," but they never got around to doing the will of God.

The Son of God is knocking on the door of your heart. And that's all He's going to do - knock. He isn't going to kick it down and force His way in. You're going to open the door or it will stay shut. You're going to let the Son of God come into that region of your life that you have kept closed against Him.

Jesus is knocking on the door of the room of laziness that some of us have kept secured with three locks. You know that if you let Jesus in there it's all going to change. He's knocking - what are you going to do?

Or perhaps there is an unholy path we've been walking. And along side of that path is a door and we can hear the knocking. If we let Jesus in, we know there's going to be a change.

On our way to the Vineyard where Jesus sent us to work, we stopped in a tavern to rest and we never did get to the Vineyard. Now there's a knock on the door and we know who's knocking.

If we go to the door and open it, Jesus isn't going to mess up our lives. When He comes in, He'll give you something better than that grudge,

or that stubbornness, or that pride,

or that sick love.

''The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that you may have life.''

"If any one hears my voice and opens the door,

I will come in and eat with him and he with me.''

The meal we eat when we break bread together we call communion. How can it be communion if there is a door between our Lord and us? First we open the door. Then He comes in and eats with us and we with Him.

God help us to open that door now!