Revelation 3:7-13 Part 2

7) And write the message to the Church in Philadelphia.  The Holy, The True, the One having the ‘David key’, “the One opening and no one shall shut, and the One shutting and no one opens”, says these things:

8) I know your works – lo, I have presented an opened door before you, which no one is enabled to shut – that you have a little strength, and you did keep My Word, and you did not deny My Name.

9) Lo, I give from out of the synagogue of Satan those declaring themselves to be Jews and are not but deceiving themselves, lo I will appoint them in order that they shall come, and they shall worship before your feet, And they shall know that I did love you.

10) Because you did keep the word of My patience, I, I also will keep you from the hour of the fiery trial, the hour about to come to pass upon the entire household to put to the proof those dwelling on the earth.

11) I come quickly!  Hold fast what you have, in order that no one might take your crown.

12) I will make the one overcoming a pillar in the temple of My God; and he shall then by no means go out.  And I will write on him the Name of My God and the Name of the City of My God, the New Jerusalem, the One that descends out of the heavens from My God, and My Own new name.

13) The one having an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the Churches.


“Lo, I have presented an opened door before you, which no one is enabled to shut”.  And I have shut the covenantal door of the temple to the judaists, and nobody can open it. The Lord of the Covenant, the One having the David key, has opened the covenantal door to all flesh, all tongues, all nations; and He has cast out and shut the door to those who pretend to hold the key.  They are the unfaithful pretenders, the unfaithful stewards; He is the real “David Key”, the true One, the faithful Steward. 

So the faithful in Philadelphia have little to fear from judaists.  There is incredible comfort here for those who have ears to hear.  The enthroned Jesus is coming quickly to execute the covenant sanctions against Israel – the pretenders - and fill His new holy temple.

The door to that new holy temple will be shut to the judaist pretenders of Israel, and no one can open it.  And having opened it, no one can shut it.  The ones who have been pursuing Christ’s newborns in the Churches in the nations think – pretend – that they have the key, that they can shut the door or open the door.  But, in reality, by their unfaithfulness they have shut the door to the Lord’s people for two thousand years.

There is so much here that it seems improbable that I could ever say enough, or say enough right things, to get clarity.  I don’t assess my own gifts as being sufficient to do so.  It’s more probable that I would be self-deluded if I thought that I could give you a clear view, from our Lord’s perspective, of His covenant of redemption.  (We’d probably have to go to the Gospel of John and spend another seven years laboring to understand history’s greatest theologian.)

But when our Lord says things (as He does here to the Church in Philadelphia) like, “Lo, I have presented an opened door before you…”, we are required to try!

And, as always when we see Jesus’ words in the text begin with this extraordinary little word “lo”, we are immediately alerted to the fact that what is about to be said is filled with prophetic and covenantal substance!  And, directly after that word, He says to the Church that the door has been opened; and it stands before you right now, having been opened.  The DOOR!

Now, it would be mindless and senseless for me to laboriously go through all of the hundreds of instances in which the word “door” appears in the historical and prophetic Scripture.  But… they are there.  (You can do that for yourselves.)  And substantial numbers of the appearances of the word are found in the Mosaic literature (Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy).  And a vast majority of those have to do with the door to the tabernacle (and, of course, by extension, the temple to be built later).

But the word also appears in many passages of prophetic literature as well, with a huge concentration of instances in the prophecy of Ezekiel.  (Ezekiel, by the way, will figure very prominently as we proceed through the Revelation, for his prophecy has to do with the hideous and loathsome corruption to fill the temple of the Lord in Jerusalem, and then the holiness, beauty and perfection of its reality as the old is destroyed and the new comes to be!)

But, as Moses received massive Revelation from God regarding the tabernacle in the desert, much of it having to do with its doors, so Ezekiel received extensive Revelation from God with regard to the temple in Jerusalem, much of which had to do with its doors.  And, indeed, the new temple, with its opened doors (as Jesus says here in our text), gains great prominence in the latter chapters, as Ezekiel sees, and describes, the New Jerusalem and the New Temple (the third) - all familiar to readers of the later chapters of John’s Revelation.

Now, I have to give you a few – a very few – instances of God’s Revelation to Moses regarding the tabernacle and its doors; and also His Revelation to Ezekiel regarding the temple in Jerusalem and its doors.

The first, then, is from Exodus 26 when God is giving Moses specific instructions for the tabernacle in the desert.  This is chapter 26 and verse 36:


And thou shalt make a hanging for the door of the tent, of blue, and purple, and scarlet, and fine twined linen, wrought with needlework.


And Exodus 29:4:

And Aaron and his sons thou shalt bring unto the door of the tabernacle of the congregation, and shalt wash them with water.


And Exodus 29:11:

And thou shalt kill the bullock before the LORD, by the door of the tabernacle of the congregation.


And Exodus 29:32:

And Aaron and his sons shall eat the flesh of the ram, and the bread that is in the basket by the door of the tabernacle of the congregation.


And Exodus 29:42:

This shall be a continual burnt offering throughout your generations at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation before the LORD: where I will meet you, to speak there unto you.


And Exodus 33:9, 10:

And it came to pass, as Moses entered into the tabernacle, the cloudy pillar descended, and stood at the door of the tabernacle, and the Lord talked with Moses.  And all the people saw the cloudy pillar stand at the tabernacle door: and all the people rose up and worshipped, every man in his tent door.


Now let’s look at a few inescapable conclusions from these, and many other, passages having to do with the tabernacle in the desert and its door.

First, please remember that the tabernacle, with all of its perfect measurements, was revealed by God to Moses in great detail; and it represented, in man-made terms, God in His Glory Cloud/Judgment Seat, and His covenant people below.  Envisioned up on end, the courtyard represented the created realm (which, being Israel, is the second ‘heaven and earth’), and the “tent” was the heavenlies – with the Holy of Holies at the top (representing the throne-room/judgment seat of God).

Secondly, at the door to the tabernacle itself was the altar of whole burnt offering.  It was also the place where washings (baptisms) took place.  The door was shut to all except the people’s priestly representative, who received the peoples’ sacrifices.

Thirdly, as the readings said, the fiery pillar came down from the Glory Cloud and was placed at the door as God spoke to Moses.

And, lastly, every detail of the tabernacle and the sacrificial system, including the filling of the tabernacle from the Glory Cloud, was an historical prophecy of the coming (one) sacrifice of the Lamb of God, and His New Holy Temple.

Now.  As we proceed to the prophetic Word in Ezekiel, let’s remember that the prophet’s vision was of a thoroughly desecrated Solomonic temple (the second temple) on the temple mount in Jerusalem.  In his vision, the entire priestly, sacrificial system had been profaned and corrupted, and the temple was filled with evil things.  So the coming sacrifice of the Son of God, and the filling of His new Holy Temple, had been debased and trashed (mocked!).  The door, the entrance, to God’s (one-time) covenantal sacrifice, His New Jerusalem, His new Holy Temple, was inconceivable to the people of Israel.  The imitation, hybrid religion, judaism, had, from the beginning, left the nation with which God had covenanted with no concept of that which God had revealed, and Israel was worse than all the surrounding pagan nations.

Listen to the prophet Ezekiel; and this is only ONE chapter of his prophesy:


2) Then I beheld, and lo a likeness as the appearance of fire: from the appearance of his loins even downward, fire; and from his loins even upward, as the appearance of brightness, as the colour of amber.

3) And he put forth the form of a hand, and took me by a lock of mine head; and the spirit lifted me up between the earth and the heaven, and brought me in the visions of God to Jerusalem, to the door of the inner court that looketh toward the north; where was the seat of the image of jealousy, which provoketh to jealousy.

4) And, behold, the glory of the God of Israel was there, according to the vision that I saw in the plain.

5) Then said he unto me, Son of man, lift up thine eyes now the way toward the north. So I lifted up mine eyes the way toward the north, and behold northward at the gate of the altar this image of jealousy in the entry.

6) He said furthermore unto me, Son of man, seest thou what they do? even the great abominations that the house of Israel committeth here, that I should go far off from my sanctuary? but turn thee yet again, and thou shalt see greater abominations.

7) And he brought me to the door of the court; and when I looked, behold a hole in the wall.

8) Then said he unto me, Son of man, dig now in the wall: and when I had digged in the wall, behold a door.

9) And he said unto me, Go in, and behold the wicked abominations that they do here.

10) So I went in and saw; and behold every form of creeping things, and abominable beasts, and all the idols of the house of Israel, portrayed upon the wall round about.

11) And there stood before them seventy men of the ancients of the house of Israel, and in the midst of them stood Jaazaniah the son of Shaphan, with every man his censer in his hand; and a thick cloud of incense went up.

12) Then said he unto me, Son of man, hast thou seen what the ancients of the house of Israel do in the dark, every man in the chambers of his imagery? for they say, the LORD seeth us not; the LORD hath forsaken the earth.

13) He said also unto me, Turn thee yet again, and thou shalt see greater abominations that they do.

14) Then he brought me to the door of the gate of the LORD's house which was toward the north; and, behold, there sat women weeping for Tammuz.

15) Then said he unto me, Hast thou seen this, O son of man? turn thee yet again, and thou shalt see greater abominations than these.

16) And he brought me into the inner court of the LORD's house, and, behold, at the door of the temple of the LORD, between the porch and the altar, were about five and twenty men, with their backs toward the temple of the LORD, and their faces toward the east; and they worshipped the sun toward the east.

17) Then he said unto me, Hast thou seen this, O son of man? Is it a light thing to the house of Judah that they commit the abominations which they commit here? for they have filled the land with violence, and have returned to provoke me to anger: and, lo, they put the branch to their nose.

18) Therefore will I also deal in fury: mine eye shall not spare, neither will I have pity: and though they cry in mine ears with a loud voice, yet I will not hear them.


NOTE:  Jaazaniah and his entire family were forever forbidden by God in Jeremiah chapter 35 to stand before Him.  But here he is, one of the seventy, standing before God in His holy temple burning incense to other gods.

NOTE:  Tammuz is an idol from Mesopotamia having to do with nature and fertility.  Ezekiel saw women at the temple door weeping, crying out, for this idol.

NOTE:  Between the altar of whole burnt offering and the door into the temple itself were twenty-five men who, having turned their backs to the temple, were worshipping a sun god.

So, the vision given to Ezekiel by God (the very same description, by the wasy, of the appearance of our Lord in John’s Revelation), the vision of the temple in Jerusalem was one of mocking provocation of God’s Own creation and His glory cloud/judgment seat above the realm!  The temple was filled with Israel’s idolatry.  And, since the temple was the pre-figuring of the coming ‘third temple’ (the one made without hands), the glory of the Son of God/Son of Man to come was debased in grotesque mockery.

The two chapters following the one I just read to you describe, in great detail, the destruction to come of Jerusalem and the temple, due to this repugnant filling of the temple with idolatry, and the contemptuous ridicule of the holy temple to come in God’s Messiah.

In the latter chapters of Ezekiel, God shows Him the coming new  Jerusalem and the new temple, from which flows healing water in the deserts and seas of humanity.  And, as prophesied in chapter 35, the holy city will become as The Garden of Eden.  And there will be twelve opened doors to the city (as Jesus reveals to John later in this letter to the Churches).

Now.  In this very short excursion into the descriptions of the tabernacle and the temple, and the prophetic language to Ezekiel, the temple complex is a man-made replica of the Presence of God and His creation.  The tabernacle and the temple are also prophetic and pre-figuring of the reality to come!  They are an “analogy” of the one existing in the heavenlies… a man-made analogy.  The man-made doors, or ‘entrances’ to the tabernacle and the temple are analogical and prophetic representations of the reality to come.  Be aware that there are NO man-made ‘openings’ into the new holy temple of Jesus Christ!

And, as we’ve seen so many times, our Lord uses the prophetic language which He, Himself, revealed to the prophets of old… especially when He introduces the language with “lo”.  “Lo, I have presented an opened door before you, which no one is enabled to shut.”

Using the door to the tabernacle and the door to the temple (which have been shut by the false stewards of Israel with all of their idolatry), The Holy One – The True Steward of the heavenly sanctuary, has built the new temple as was said He was going to do.  And, being the True Steward of His Holy Temple, the doors have been opened, and no one shuts them.

The temple in Jerusalem (soon to be destroyed at the writing of this text) has its doors shut by the false stewards; the covenanting, Creator/God was unrecognizable to the people in that evil-filled place.  But the New Temple of the Lord Jesus Christ is occupied by the True Steward, and all its doors are opened, for the One True God fills it (rather than the false stewards).  And there is no idolatry in His place.

And that’s why verse eight reads and sounds like it does.


“I know your works – lo, I have presented an opened door before you, which no one is enabled to shut – that you have a little strength, and you did keep My Word, and you did not deny My Name.”


The new Holy Temple, the new Jerusalem, was definitively established at Jesus’ resurrection ‘the third day’!  And He is coming quickly to fill that temple in the new city – being patient only so long as His elect people are being removed from the old one.  The “doors” of the new one have been presented to the Churches, He says.  And there will be NO idolatry there, for it will be filled with the Spirit of the King of Kings and Lord of Lords.

The Church at Philadelphia has disallowed any form of idolatry, in that it has “kept His Word” and it “has not denied His Name” as the idolatrous judaists had done in the old temple.  Therefore this Church is commended.  The doors of the New Holy Temple and the New Holy City stand having been opened before the Church, for it has stood strong against any form of idolatry.  And Jesus is coming quickly to fill His new temple as He destroys the old.  And no one will be able to shut the doors that He, Himself, has opened.  After all, He is David’s Son AND David’s Lord; and He has the ‘David Key’.

Now.  Verse nine, at first glance, seems problematic.  But that’s the case only at ‘first glance’!  Here it is again:


“Lo, I give from out of the synagogue of Satan those declaring themselves to be Jews and are not but deceiving themselves, lo I will appoint them in order that they shall come, and they shall worship before your feet, And they shall know that I did love you.”


The word “worship” has all kinds of meanings according to the context.  And the context here is intensified and highlighted by TWO more occasions of the little word “lo”, isn’t it?  And that, of course, means that the Lord Jesus Christ is driving the Church in Philadelphia back to significant covenantal and prophetic Scripture which He, Himself, revealed.  It’s as if He says, “remember what I said before to the prophets of old”!

The word “worship” means to bow down in submission.  The ‘bowing down’ could be to an idol; it could mean true worship of God; it might mean submitting to superior force; and it may mean bowing down and submitting to those who have been right when one has obviously been wrong!  And, lastly, it unquestionably means that God causes some to bow down and submit to Him and His covenant elect when it is proven what He said with regard to them!

And concerning that, I take you to the historic and prophetic Scripture, the first of which is an example of “the many” bowing down at the feet of “the one” who has been covenantally chosen by God to shelter early Israel in the bosom of a pagan nation.  Here it is from Genesis 42:


“And Joseph was the governor over the land, and he it was that sold to all the people of the land: and Joseph's brethren came, and bowed down themselves before him with their faces to the earth.”


But the exact location of Jesus reference here in our text is in the blessing of Jacob (Israel) on his twelve sons (Genesis 48).  Judah, whose tribe God chose as the covenant line of David and Jesus, receives the following blessing of his father Jacob.  Listen carefully for the direct reference in our text to this very prophetic event:


8) Judah, thou art he whom thy brethren shall praise: thy hand shall be on the neck of thine enemies; thy father's children shall bow down before thee.

9) Judah is a lion's whelp: from the prey, my son, thou art gone up: he stooped down, he couched as a lion, and as an old lion; who shall rouse him up?

10) The sceptre shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh come; and unto him shall the gathering of the people be.

11) Binding his foal unto the vine, and his ass's colt unto the choice vine; he washed his garments in wine, and his clothes in the blood of grapes:

12) His eyes shall be red with wine, and his teeth white with milk.


Now, it is obvious from the passage that the blessing of Jacob on his son Judah has to do with the Son of God/Son of Man coming forth from Judah’s loins. Judah’s dominion would find it’s fullness in Messiah. He is “Shiloh”, the place of rest and peace for the peoples of the earth.

And it is equally obvious that our Lord refers directly to Himself and His elect people in the Church in Philadelphia.  “Your father’s children shall bow down before you” (Jacob’s blessing on Judah), is filled up here in the text of Revelation, as Jesus tells the Church in Philadelphia that the judaists in the synagogues of Philadelphia who mocked the believers in the Church will soon see the result of His coming.

Their persecution of Christ’s people; their suborning of witnesses against them; their accusations of them before the Roman government; their boycotting of their produce; and their ridicule and disdain and mockery of the Church’s holding to the Name of Jesus and His soon-to-come Parousia, and His execution of the whore of babylon, will cause some from the judaist synagogues, as prophesied by Jacob concerning his son Judah, to bow before Jesus’ elect people in Philadelphia. 

The judaists in the satanic synagogues are the non-elect sons of Jacob; and they will be forced to acknowledge, by the events that would soon take place, that the Church was right, and that the Church was beloved of the Son of God.  Jesus IS Shiloh; and the blessing of Jacob on his son Judah has been fulfilled.

We will continue next Lord’s Day, Lord willing, with verse ten.