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Come In! The Door's Open!

Daily Reading: Revelation 3

Scripture Focus: Behold, I have set before you an open door, which no one is able to shut. I know that you have but little power, and yet you have kept my word and have not denied my name. (Revelation 3.8)

Devotional Thought: Yesterday, we considered Ephesus, a church that had lost their first love. In today's chapter, we read about a church at the opposite end of the spectrum: Philadelphia, "The Church of Brotherly Love."

In these messages to seven churches of Revelation, Jesus expressed a variety of concerns for the various congregations. For the church in Philadelphia, Jesus had three concerns...

1. Expulsion from the synagogue. Many of their neighbors, friends, relatives, and business associates were undoubtedly a part of the Jewish synagogue. When the Christians were expelled from the synagogue, those relationships suffered.

2. An open door. Although the synagogue had been closed to them, the church was in a unique position to spread the gospel of Jesus. Philadelphia was in a strategic location - culturally, commercially, and politically - an open door for evangelism.

3. Waning strength. The church had been working hard in the midst of disappointment. That had sapped them of strength. Jesus knew that they were under tremendous burden.

In all of the pain of severed relationships, and in the face of daunting challenges, the Christians in Philadelphia...

1. Kept the word of Christ. I have found the Word of God to be such a resting place. In the midst of the storm, the Word keeps us as much as we keep his Word. Hold on!

2. Had not denied his name. Jesus promises us that when we acknowledge him before men, he will acknowledge us before the Father!

3. Would themselves be acknowledged. Not only would Jesus acknowledge them, but those who had rejected them would come to the place that they would have to confess that these Christians were the real deal.

May Jesus give us the strength to go through the open door!

Prayer: Thank you, Lord Jesus, for the love that we share as brothers and sisters in Christ. Help us, as you helped the Christians in Philadelphia, to acknowledge your name and be acknowledged by you. Amen.

Psalm of the Day: Psalm 107.17-22

17 Some were fools through their sinful ways,

and because of their iniquities suffered affliction;

18 they loathed any kind of food,

and they drew near to the gates of death.

19 Then they cried to the Lord in their trouble,

and he delivered them from their distress.

20 He sent out his word and healed them,

and delivered them from their destruction.

21 Let them thank the Lord for his steadfast love,

for his wondrous works to the children of man!

22 And let them offer sacrifices of thanksgiving,

and tell of his deeds in songs of joy!

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