Just recently, I had the privilege of serving with a fantastic group of volunteers (doorholders as we are called – see Psalm 84:10) at Passion 2014 – a gathering of 20,000 college age students who paused for two days to be encouraged in the Lord and lift up the name of Jesus.
Hours before the students arrived, hundreds of doorholders reported to at Philips Arena in Atlanta to complete the final details and be given our assignments before the first session kicked off. At the early morning check in, we were issued a t-shirt, packet of information, wrist band, and an access card. My pass was stamped with a simple “DH” (meaning Doorholder). This gave me unrestricted passage through the staff entry doors to the main venue, allowed me into volunteer headquarters, and let the security people know that it was ok for me be in my assigned area. It, however, did not allow me onto the main stage, the loading dock, or any of the technical areas behind the scenes. Mine just wouldn’t open any doors to those secured locations. The badge needed to say “AA” to grant me ‘all access’.
For through (Christ) we … have access to the Father by one Spirit. ~ Ephesians 2:18
Every now and then, you hear people from another faith, or even of no faith, say that they pray to God or offer petitions to the Lord for others, but they don’t really believe in Jesus. While they sound very spiritual and even humble to believe in the power of prayer, apart from dependence on Jesus, their statement is unintentionally (and probably unknowingly) prideful. The unspoken assumption embedded in that attitude is that a person can gain an audience with the Father on his or her merit. But on our own, our sinful condition blocks our access to Him. We’re less able to open the door to the throne room of heaven than I was able to get onto the main stage at the Passion conference. Without a Savior, we just don’t have the right credentials.
But all that changes once we have our sins are forgiven through faith in Jesus Christ. The previously barred doors are open and we’re welcomed into God’s presence. Romans 5:1 says “since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand.”
You know what peace with God means? Through Jesus you have more than a backstage pass; You have an invitation to get to know the “Star” personally. However, He won’t force you. You can have the “AA” badge, but still choose to hang out on the edges of the production. Or you can take advantage of your favored position and become part of God’s show, letting Him change and use you to spread His fame throughout the world.
Since we have a great high priest who has ascended into heaven, Jesus the Son of God, let us … approach God’s throne of grace with confidence… ~ Hebrews 4:14, 16