Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me. Revelation 3:20
You could ponder that scripture for days and still find more to ponder. It’s worth pondering, too, because it’s one of the most powerful teachings of the entire Bible. Just one possible pondering could go like this:
- “Behold” – Looky here, this is going to be good;
- “I” – God Himself is talking to us. The Great I AM;
- “stand” – a pose of readiness. Not sitting or slouching. Standing;
- “at the door” – the meaning of door could fill six volumes of the Bible dictionary, among them: connection, passage, accessibility, threshold, entrance, demarcation, barrier, portal, transition, and protection. I imagine the meaning you ascribe to “door” as you consider it is much like a Rorschach test where you look at an ink blob and see whatever your brain wants you to see;
- “and knock” – We love God because He first loved us. His love and presence are so all-encompassing that we cannot exist outside of it. We can either ignore Him or respond to him, but He is the Actor and we the Reactor;
- “if any man” – anyone, anywhere, ever;
- “hear my voice” – become aware that there is something bigger than ourselves that we are a part of;
- “and open the door” – acknowledge our smallness, respond to the urge inside of us to connect with the something bigger than ourselves;
- “I will come in to him” – God does most of the work. He knocks, and if we but open the door, He makes the effort to come in, to meet us where we are;
- “and will sup with him” – God feeds a deep need for Him inside of us that cannot be filled in any other way;
- “and he with me.” – We humbly recognize that God feeds a deep need for Him inside of us that cannot be filled in any other way.
Now consider another scripture with deep ponderability.
But he turned, and said unto Peter, Get thee behind me, Satan: thou art an offence unto me: for thou savourest not the things that be of God, but those that be of men. Matthew 16:23
Notice that effort is required on our part here as well. The default condition is Satan in front of us, trying to mess with us. We have to take action or he sticks to us like glue.
It all boils down to action. With a minimum amount of effort on our part—merely the desire to believe—God swoops in and magnifies our effort. With a minimum amount of effort on our part—simply the intention to banish him—Satan loses power over us. The next time you’re feeling slothful and lazy, which I admit I find delicious at times, just remember who calls that a party and who stands ready to magnify our least little effort at self-discipline out of pure love.