Christ, the Door!
John 10: 9: "I am the Door."
The text has only four words and only ten letters in all.
The first word has only one letter.
The second word has just two letters.
The third word has three letters.
The fourth word has four letters.
Yet, wrapped up in those four words and ten letters is enough to make any person
satisfied in this world and safe for the next.
Here is one of those grand, wide sweeping statements that the Lord often made of Himself.
Here is another claim of His deity.
Jesus delighted to choose commonplace things of life
as illustrations of His person and symbols of His power!
Jesus said, "I am the bread."
He also said, "I am the water,"and also, "I am the light."
How remarkable that Christ should compare Himself with things so simple, and yet so essential.
In our text we have one of those illustrations.
A door is a commonplace thing, and a door of a sheepfold is certainly a matter of fact,
and yet is absolutely essential for shepherds and their fold.
Some years ago, some Middle East travelers noticed a sheepfold, which was
a low wall, made of mud and stones.
But they were puzzled as to why there was no door across the entrance of the sheepfold.
They asked the shepherd why there was no door.
The shepherd replied, "I am the door."
At night the shepherd would lie down in the entrance so that no sheep could get out
unless he became aware of it.
Jesus said, "I am the door."
Christ is the only door!
Jesus did not say, "I am a door."
He said, "I am the door."
There is a vast difference between a door and the door.
There is only one door into God's fold, and that door is Christ.
He is the only door.
"There is none other name given under heaven among men,
whereby we must be saved. "
Jesus said, "No man cometh unto the Father but by me."
Jesus is the only Saviour for sinning men.
There is no other Saviour.
Near the deathbed of a man who had professed infidelity all his life,
and who belonged to the infidel club of his city, was found this testimony:
"I've tried in vain a thousand ways,
My fears to quell, my hopes to raise;
But what I need, the Bible says,
Is ever, only Jesus."
There are many trying, as he did, the thousand ways, but we must come
to the place, as he did, where we recognize and gladly confess that Christ is the only way.
So many are trying religion, and others are trying respectability,
and some are trying reformation, but all these will not avail.
Christ is the only door!
Oh, that we could get people's minds off of rituals, and of their own deeds and vain hopes,
and look to Christ who died for their sins and rose again for their justification.
Only Jesus can help helpless sinners.
"My only hope must be in Jesus,
To lose the burden of my sin;
There is no other power to help me,
Anew in Christ I must begin.
There is no other Saviour given,
No other hope beyond the grave;
No other Name in earth or heaven,
Thy guilty, dying soul to save."
Christ is the only door!
Christ is also the open door!
Christ is the entrance.
He is the open door.
He is the open door that no man can shut.
After all these years, the Door is still open today.
Only God knows how soon the door will shut, and then no more sheep will enter the fold.
The thought of the open door gives us the picture of Christ standing with open arms
and pierced hands, tenderly saying, "Come!"
D. L. Moody told the story of a Scotch girl who wandered away from God,
and from her father and mother, and went deeply into sin.
One night in a wild frenzy in the city of Edinburgh, she decided that she would commit suicide.
But before doing so, she would go and see her home once more.
She wanted to see her home where she was born and had spent her youth.
When she arrived at her neighborhood, it was in the middle of the night.
She came up to the gate of her home.
She lifted the latch and quietly entered the yard.
She walked up the path until she came to the door of the cottage.
She was surprised to find the door wide open.
Afraid that some harm might have come to her elderly mother,
she called to her mother, and her mother answered.
The girl said, "Mother, I found the door open."
The old, Scotch mother got up from her bed and came downstairs.
She said, "Maggie, it's many a long day since you went away,
but always the prayer has been in my heart, "Lord, send her home."
The mother's prayer continued, "Whether she come by night or day,
I want her to see an open door and know she is welcome."
And that night the girl was held in her mother's arms of love and forgiveness,
This story pictures the love of God and God's great forgiveness.
By the open door of her mother's cottage, she found her way to forgiveness and love.
The door is open.
The door is inviting and is welcoming.
Christ is the open door!
Now, let us consider some of the privileges one enjoys who enters the door.
He finds Protection
("He shall be saved.")
Here we are brought face to face with the primary and fundamental need of people everywhere.
The gospel is the good news of salvation.
The person that enters the door by faith will find:
Protection From the Pangs Of the Past.
God knows, and so do we, that we need just that. The past is like a nightmare.
It follows like a black shadow.
It rises like a black, big hand in the night to terrorize and torment.
Memory haunts and threatens.
In every home there seems to be a skeleton in the closet -- a relic of the past.
How great it is for someone to cleanse the stains and heal the hurts of yesterday.
But he, who by faith enters the door, finds the past left behind.
The old is gone, and everything is new.
The blood of Christ blots out the darkest record in one stroke.
How often a person, when thinking of his past, has said:
"I wish there were some wonderful place,
Called the land of beginning again;
Where all our mistakes, and all our heartaches,
And all of our poor selfish grief
Could be dropped like a shabby old coat at the door,
And never put on any more."
Hallelujah! There is such a place!
"I, even I, am He that blotteth out thy transgressions for mine own sake,
and will not remember thy sins."
"There is a fountain filled with blood,
Drawn from Immanuel's veins;
And sinners plunged beneath that flood
Lose all their guilty stains."
The Perils of the Present
Thank God, He blots out our past, but He also stays with us in the present.
He saves us now!
All of us need a Saviour just for today.
How blessed to be able to sing:
"Moment by moment I'm kept in His love,
Moment by moment I've life from above."
These are difficult days.
These are days of perplexity and days of deep depression.
Christ is just the Saviour we need for a day like this.
Storms of suffering and tempests of temptation may rage, but the Door of the fold stands
between these things and the sheep of the flock, and that Door is Christ Himself.
Jesus is the open Door of salvation, but a closed Door against the cold and the storm
and the robber in the night.
He is a daily Saviour.
He saves from the perils of the present.
"In the calm of the noontide, in sorrow's lone hour;
In times when temptation cast o'er me its power;
In the tempests of life, only its wide, heaving sea,
Thou blest Rock of Ages, I'm hiding in Thee."
The Fear of the Future
Christ saves from the past and for the present and from the future.
In the more serious moments of life, every person wonders what's ahead.
That is why so many hurry about.
They are buried in business, and are plunged into pleasure so that they may
hide their eyes from the future.
But it is there!
The future is still there.
But you need not fear it.
You need not tremble at the thought of eternity, if you have Christ dwelling in your heart by faith.
Christ removes the menace of the judgment.
There is Black Friday ahead for the Christian.
"There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus."
"For I am persuaded that neither death nor life..." (Romans 8:35-39)
But there is more than protection suggested by the text.
There Is Also Privilege.
He shall go in and out.
There is privilege and liberty.
Only those who have been saved by Christ, and have come into the fold are really free.
The sheep, lost, out on the mountain, near the yawning gorge or the howling wolves, are not free.
It is the sheep of the flock that are free.
In Christ there is not only life; there is abundant life.
Liberty is found in Christ; life is slavery without Jesus.
No one is really free unless Christ has shorn him of his shackles.
"He is a freeman whom the Truth makes free, and all are slaves beside."
So, the text reminds us that we not only come in for salvation, but we go out for service.
We go out into the world, the workplace, and the office for Christ.
There is liberty in the Lord.
The text also tells us that there is not only protection and privilege, but there is more!
There Is Provision in Christ -- "And find pasture."
Christ looks after the sheep of His flock.
They are starving sheep on the mountain wild,
but the sheep of His flock are the sheep of His pasture.
They are satisfied sheep.
He succors His saints.
He feeds the flock.
Have you ever seen cattle trying to find grass on a yellow pasture field
where there is nothing but a brown stalk here and there or a weed that turns to dust in their mouths?
That is a life without Christ!
But all who know Christ will be able to testify that He leads those who are His
into the green pastures and beside the still waters.
Christ gives provisions.
Hugh Prince Hughes, in his last will and testament, wrote:
"Put on my tombstone:
Thou, O Christ, art all I want,
More than all in Thee I find."
So, we see that, if by faith we enter this only and open Door, there are protection,
privilege, and provision for us.
There are also forgiveness, freedom, and food.
Have you entered in?
That is the question.