“Knock, Knock” jokes rank up there with “dad” jokes. Most of the time they are a play on words, and almost all the time they’re only cute (or funny) when a kid says them.
These passages with knocking in them are probably quite familiar to you. If not, hang around Christian circles, and they will show up.
The first passage is probably number two on the knocking list. It is filled with a great promise. However, some have misunderstood the promise, and that has caused a lot of pain.
When taken out of context, the passage sounds like God is some cosmic vending machine. You just put your prayer in and out comes whatever it is you want. Within those same circles, there is an added, God just wants you to be happy.
In context, though, the passage is about entering the Kingdom of God. It’s not about wealth or health. It’s about where your citizen is while on Earth, and where you will be after your time here is gone.
The second knocking passage is similar to the first, however, it adds a rejection clause. The implication is people trying to force their way “past” the gates. The implication in this passage is that just because you’re at the right place (let’s say, church) and saw God, that doesn’t mean your heart has submitted to God.
As Jesus continues, he goes so far as to poke at the Jewish pride of being the descendants of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. Just because they were born in the right place of the right blood did not give them the right to enter the Kingdom of God.
The third of our knocking passages is probably the most famous of them all. It sounds so warm and fuzzy that Jesus is knocking on the door. However, when we have the warm fuzzy feelings, we should often double-check them.
The message isn’t Jesus come on in. The message is really a question, do you know Me? One generally does not open one’s doors strangers without some caution. One certainly doesn’t invite them in for dinner. The implication is that they don’t know or forgot Jesus!
Knocking is making one’s presence known to another. It can be a sound of warning. It can be a sound of greeting. What it is exactly depends on the relationship between those on the other sides of the door.
Knocking doesn’t stop at knocking. There is a choice that goes along with it: yelling, “go away”; opening the door grudgingly; opening the door gladly with a warm welcome; ignoring the knocker, and hope they go away; there are probably other responses, too.
Which door will Jesus walk through?
Lord Jesus, there are many doors in this life. Help us to view them as opportunities to seek and see you, and to also bring others through those doors to you. Amen.
1) What feelings did/do each of today’s passages create in you? Why?
2) The first two passages are about the Kingdom of God. How does the third passage affect your understanding of the first two?
3) We all want to believe that we would warmly and gladly welcome Jesus if he knocks. How comfortable are you if he knocks right now? Now what?