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Praying for an Open Door (17 of 18)
In today's Scripture Paul tries to enlist everyone in this young church in the cause of Christ - that cause to which Paul has committed his life and for which he has been imprisoned.
"...pray for us... that God will open to us a door for the word, that we may declare the mystery of Christ, for which I am in prison, so that I may reveal it clearly, as I should."
Prisoners long for open doors.
I once visited the State Penitentiary in Lincoln, Nebraska. I was there with a prayer team to visit and pray with prisoners. I remember the sequence of doors through which we had to pass. I remember the sound of each one closing behind us as the guards sent us through. It was an awful sound, oppressive and threatening. I could only begin to imagine the despondency of those prisoners who were locked behind those massive doors for years to come.
Paul no doubt wanted out of prison. But his primary concern wasn't for his own personal freedom. Paul was willing to be imprisoned if it helped spread the gospel of Christ to others. In another of his letters from Prison - to the church at Philippi - he wrote:
Philippians 1:12 through Philippians 1:14 (NRSV) 12I want you to know, beloved, that what has happened to me has actually helped to spread the gospel, 13so that it has become known throughout the whole imperial guard and to everyone else that my imprisonment is for Christ; 14and most of the brothers and sisters, having been made confident in the Lord by my imprisonment, dare to speak the word with greater boldness and without fear.
Yes, Paul wanted to be free. But what concerned him most was to find an open door for the spread of the gospel of Christ
It had been Paul's experience that God opens doors for us to share the Gospel of Christ with others.
In Acts 14:27 Luke reports that when Paul and his fellow workers reached the church at Antioch they called every ...
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