“Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. . . . I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me.”
— Revelation 3:20
During the COVID-19 pandemic, many people struggled even more than usual with loneliness and isolation. Not being able to meet and eat with friends and family weighed heavily on populations worldwide.
For many people and for many different reasons, though, eating alone was a reality long before COVID restrictions came along, and in those cases the lifting of restrictions won’t mean there will suddenly be people to eat with. So Jesus’ words of invitation here may be especially welcome for people who yearn to eat with someone who loves them.
Jesus’ words in this passage echo some of the lines in another book of the Bible, which is associated with tender, intimate love: the Song of Songs. In Song of Songs 5:2, the woman says, “Listen! My beloved is knocking.” And her beloved says: “Open to me. . . .”
Both the scene in Song of Songs and this scene in Revelation are very tender, and the word for “love” here is phileo, referring to love that is affectionate, as warmhearted as a close friend, and as near to one’s heart as a lover. It makes sense, then, that the great feast that culminates the entire story of God’s love for his people is the wedding supper of the Lamb, our Savior, Jesus Christ.
Listen, he stands at the door and knocks. Will you open the door and let Jesus in?
Lord Jesus, I hear you at the door, knocking. Thank you! Lord, please come in and eat with me. Amen.