Spiritual Intelligence: The Door

Then Jesus said to them again, “Most assuredly, I say to you, I am the door of the sheep. All who ever came before Me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not hear them. I am the door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture. The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.

Good morning friends. The use of metaphors to describe oneself is a very powerful tool for self discovery. It is very simple and easy to implement in one-to-one or group settings. In its most simplistic application, it can be used as an icebreaker with a view to getting to know participants below their facade. At an in depth level, it can draw out participants’ intuitive self; and how it might affect their world view; this concept is widely known as Metaphor Coaching.

Jesus used a lot of metaphors in His preaching and teaching ministry. In these verses; He describes Himself as “the door”, His audience as the sheep, and the devil and his agents as thieves or hirelings. Doors lead us to passages, corridors, rooms, exits, entrances, stairs etc., in the same vain He opens their minds to endless possibilities by using this metaphor. He takes them on an extraordinary journey, explaining the various dynamics in the relationship between each subject, and finally he crystallises his presentation with a prophecy about His death and resurrection.

However, it was still far fetched for His disciples and followers, as the idea of His death as an atonement for sins, and His resurrection; were perhaps still contentious today as it was then. He said:

Therefore My Father loves Me, because I lay down My life that I may take it again. No one takes it from Me, but I lay it down of Myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This command I have received from My Father

These words reminds me of David’s testimony to Saul as he tries to convince the young shepherd to reconsider his decision to fight against the vicious and more experienced giant by the name, Goliath. But in response, David said:

“Your servant used to keep his father’s sheep, and when a lion or a bear came and took a lamb out of the flock, I went out after it and struck it, and delivered the lamb from its mouth; and when it arose against me, I caught it by its beard, and struck and killed it. Your servant has killed both lion and bear; and this uncircumcised Philistine will be like one of them, seeing he has defied the armies of the living God.” Moreover David said, “The Lord, who delivered me from the paw of the lion and from the paw of the bear, He will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine.”

And Saul said to David, “Go, and the Lord be with you!”

The level of his commitment to the sheep in his care was unquestionable. He puts his life in harm’s way to ensure that they are kept safe from predators, he provides shelter for them from the elements, and green pastures for their nourishment.

I close this thought with a passage captured by Matthew. I believe it highlights the difference between Jesus’ commitment to His fold, and that of David or any other leader in humankind’s history:

If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask Him!

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~ Sabali

Spiritual Intelligence: Behold, I Stand At The Door And Knock

Because you say, ‘I am rich, have become wealthy, and have need of nothing’—and do not know that you are wretched, miserable, poor, blind, and naked— I counsel you to buy from Me gold refined in the fire, that you may be rich; and white garments, that you may be clothed, that the shame of your nakedness may not be revealed; and anoint your eyes with eye salve, that you may see. As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten. Therefore be zealous and repent. Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me. To him who overcomes I will grant to sit with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne.

The word Behold means to see or observe (someone or something, especially of remarkable or impressive nature). With this in mind we understand that we have to be watchful and observant at all times for the still small voice of Jesus Christ. This action is not a one-off exercise; but one of a continuous nature. It’s the gesture of a friend or relative, it’s an experience to look forward to; one to be enjoyed. Good morning friends. It’s interesting to know that we mean so much to God, and that He enjoys our company. In the words of the Psalmist:

What is man that You are mindful of him, and the son of man that You visit him? For You have made him a little lower than the angels, and You have crowned him with glory and honor. You have made him to have dominion over the works of Your hands; you have put all things under his feet, all sheep and oxen— even the beasts of the field, the birds of the air, and the fish of the sea that pass through the paths of the seas.

In our opening verses, we are presented with a people who were in love with themselves. A people who had been distracted, and blown completely off course with the pleasures and leisure of this present world. A people who’s vision had become blurred, a people who had become drunk with the wine of Babylon. In their drunkenness, they believe the lies of the devil; they believe they have it all. But, in-spite of this we see a loving God knocking at the door of their hearts, hoping to be received and invited to have dinner; reminiscent to what He did when He caught a glimpse of Zacchaeus perching on the branch of that famous sycamore tree. In demonstration of the depth of His love towards us, He made this statement:

You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain, that whatever you ask the Father in My name He may give you.

His love makes the journey to our hearts seem like a walk in the park… Just picture how you feel when you are at the door of a dear one. So, will you listen for the door? Will you let Him in? Will you take time to wash His traveling feet, recline at the table, and have dinner with Him? 20140501-054855.jpg ~ Sabali