20 “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. (Rev 3:20 NKJ)”
This statement was made to the Laodicean church, which had grown very complacent and prideful. It is an invitation to them, an offer of a wonderful privilege. Consider if you were a small-ranking employee at a large company, and one day the CEO sent you an email asking you to join him for lunch next Tuesday. Or if you received a phone call from the chief of staff of the President of the United States, who said that the president was going to be in town two weeks from now and wanted to have dinner with you. Wouldn’t you be thrilled? What an honor! And what an opportunity!
Laodicea had grown complacent and prideful, and as a result were blind to their real spiritual need. By making this offer to them, Jesus is waking them up to His absence among them, so that they will open the door and give Jesus His rightful place in their midst. Any of them, He says, that open to Him will receive the benefits of His sweet fellowship.
This verse is also a warning to Laodicea, as the previous warnings and call to repentance make clear. Jesus is being excluded from His rightful place. They presume on His grace with no submission to Him. He comes to them sweetly entreating them to repent, but if the call is unheard, Jesus will not simply meekly go away. This is His house, His church, and He will not forever permit it to be hijacked for the private purposes of men. He will punish those who try to seize the Kingdom of God and its benefits for themselves.
We celebrate the Lord’s Supper this Sunday and as we do so, let us keep Jesus’ words to the church in Laodicea in mind, both as invitation and warning. What a wonderful privilege is being held out to us here, to sit and sup with the King of Heaven Himself! He offers Himself to us freely, to feed us with His life, to guide and direct us, to forgive our sins, to cover us with His grace.
But hear the warning as well. Take heed that you discern the body, that you recognize that this is the Lord’s house, and not ours. The church, the Supper, even our own lives are not here to puff up our pride and serve our interests. If we presume to try to enjoy the Lord’s Table while He Himself is shut out of our hearts, know that the warning does not come in vain. Without Christ in our midst, in each of our hearts, we are naked, blind, and starving, whether we admit it or not, and one day, Jesus will stop knocking and will come in judgment and take what is His by force. You do not want to be on the receiving end of that. So kiss the Son, submit to His power and right, and receive the overwhelming flood of benefits that He has for all those who are His. Don’t presume to have some right to sit at the table of Christ. Repent, believe the gospel, open the door to Christ, and sup with Him, and on Him, and live.