I’ve heard this phrase to the point where I think people actually believe this is somehow a biblical concept.
God has opened the door for me to ____.
I was pursuing something I really felt called to, but God closed the door.
That’s not in the Bible folks. It is a non-biblical, non-Christian philosophy called fatalism.
I believe this little phrase, God opens and closes doors, has lead to people falsely blaming God for missed opportunities. We put this philosophy of open and closed doors above biblical concepts like perseverance, patience, and long-suffering.
Instead, many have bought into a mentality that it’s meant to be, God will open doors. If it isn’t meant to be, God will close doors.
Again, that’s fatalism. That isn’t how God works. Nor is it how God’s people are asked to look at the world.
This is what God says about opening doors:
Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him, and he with me. Revelation 3:20
- Did David tell his friends, “Yeah, I was anointed as the next king, I don’t know though. Clearly, Saul doesn’t like me so I think God is closing that door?“
- I don’t think God cared too much about Jonah’s “closing the door” on going to Ninevah.
- I don’t remember Jesus telling Paul the whole blinding thing was an open door to a life in ministry.
- And a ship-wreck was clearly a “closed door” if I’ve ever seen one. But did that stop him?
- Persecutions of the first apostles weren’t seen as God closing doors. The only door that ended their ministry typically involved lions.
- Pharaoh refusing to release the Jews for the first 9 plagues wasn’t God closing a door.
- Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego had an open door to a fiery furnace. But that didn’t stop them, did it?
- Seems like the doors were closed around old Jericho, weren’t they? Did that stop God’s people from taking action?
On and on we see that Scripture is not fatalistic about vocation, doing good, doing right, or fulfilling our call!
But God does work in us and through us when we persevere, when we are patient in affliction, when we long-suffer for doing right.
God rewards the righteous. God smiles on those who seek justice. God hears and answers prayer. God wants us to seek wise-council. God’s calling is true. God can move literal and figurative mountains for the faithful.
God calls us and asks us to depend on Him and Him alone.
He could care less about our education. (Paul) He could care less about our abilities. (Moses) He could care less about our lack of faith. (Jonah) He could care less about our past failures. (David)
When God asks us to do something open and closed doors are meaningless.
If He is asking you to do something He will make a way.
Rather than worrying about if the door is open or closed we are asked to open the door. We may have to kick it in. And we may need to buy a sledge-hammer to make a way where there is no way.
But waiting for doors to open or doors to close is meaningly, dangerous, and destructive. The only door you should be closing is on fatalism. The only door you should be opening is to Jesus, “Here I am, use me how you want. I am yours. You are my Savior and Lord.”
Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will. Romans 12:2