Gates of Open Opportunity?
In Matthew 16, Jesus asked Peter a question that rings in the corridors of the centuries, "But who do you say that I am?" We all have to answer that question. Our eternity hangs on the answer. Peter acknowledged that Jesus is the Christ—the one that was promised from the fall.
At that point Jesus blessed Peter, then promised on this rock, on this truth, I will build My church and the gates of hell will not prevail against it.
Interestingly this promise was fulfilled in a tangable way in Peter’s lifetime. This is also a promise to us as we live and move in acknowledgement that Jesus is the Lord. How so?
In Acts 12 Luke tells the story of how James the brother of John was killed by Herod and it pleased the Jews. So Herod arrested Peter, locked him behind bars with the intention of killing Peter also. As the people of God prayed, an angel visited the prison, woke Peter, lit the room, invited Peter to stand, removed his chains, allowed him to dress, walked by two guard posts, then led him out the iron gates that held him. The gates opened of their own accord. It seems Jesus was fulfilling His promise that those confining gates, those "gates of hell" would not prevail against Peter and the mission for which Peter was called.
The Psalmist promises our lives will not always be green pastures, but there will be valleys of darkness. John 16:33 records Jesus saying, "In the world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world."
Do we believe that Jesus is still capable to open gates that evil shuts? Do we believe that Jesus is good for having you overcome whatever is your biggest life-challenges standing in the way of using your life to make a radical Kingdom difference? Try Him and test him. The quality of your eternity depends on it.
Nelson Malwitz, Finishers Project/MissionNext Founder