Doors welcome us. But they also defend us against intruders. Like people, doors can be warm and inviting. Or cold and exclusive.
In my home, we have a garage door. I love the easy access it provides to our home. We drive up, press a button, and we’re in.
Doors have played an important role in my upbringing. Back in Gardena, CA, I remember opening the garage door and tinkering in my dad’s wood shop. Sharp tools, wood, and time gave me joy.
Doors are important in other areas of our lives. Some of us are waiting for them to open. Whether a promotion, relationship, or opportunity, we wait for the right gate to open. And when it does, we run through it.
In the Bible, we learn of a special door. Unlike all other entryways, this door is human. It breathes and speaks. It hears and responds. It is tender yet courageous. His name: Jesus.
During biblical times, shepherds would lead their flock inside a courtyard with only one small opening. Shepherds would sit in the courtyard’s opening and act as a gateway or door to control who came in and who went out. And since there were thieves and dangerous animals outside the courtyard, the shepherd’s role as a door for their sheep provided much needed protection. (See this blog post by Wayne Stiles, which illustrates how shepherds serve as a door for their sheep.)
While talking to a group of Jewish people, Jesus said, “…I tell you the solemn truth, I am the door for the sheep. All who came before me were thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not listen to them. I am the door. If anyone enters through me, he will be saved, and will come in and go out, and find pasture” (John 10:7-9 NET).
In this passage, Jesus focuses on entering through the door. He clarifies that all who enter through Him will be saved. And by entering through Him, we find pasture.
David, the shepherd-turned-king, describes the refreshment found in the Lord’s pasture (Psalm 23:1-6 NET):
A psalm of David.
The Lord is my shepherd,
I lack nothing.
He takes me to lush pastures,
he leads me to refreshing water.
He restores my strength.
He leads me down the right paths
for the sake of his reputation.
Even when I must walk through the darkest valley,
I fear no danger,
for you are with me;
your rod and your staff reassure me.
You prepare a feast before me
in plain sight of my enemies.
You refresh my head with oil;
my cup is completely full.
Surely your goodness and faithfulness will pursue me all my days,
and I will live in the Lord’s house for the rest of my life.
Are you thirsty and dry inside? Has life’s difficulty parched your soul? Do you wonder who is Jesus? For those of us needing refreshment, we find comfort in knowing we can enter through The Door that leads to true life.
Scripture and/or notes quoted by permission. Quotations designated (NET) are from the NET Bible® copyright ©1996-2006 by Biblical Studies Press, L.L.C. http://bible.org All rights reserved.