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Study Resources :: Text Commentaries :: F.E. Marsh :: Readings 51-100 (Cleaving - Conviction)

F.E. Marsh :: 56. Christ as the Possessor of the Key of David

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“HE that hath the key of David. He that openeth, and no man shutteth; and shutteth, and no man openeth” (Rev. 3:7).

“The Key of David.” The key represents power, authority, office.

A person who has the key can unlock the door, and thus reveal what is in the room. Christ has power to show what sin has done. Sin is like Ehud slaying Eglon, king of Moab; after Ehud had slain the king, he shut the door and escaped (Judges 3:23); sin has slain us, and naturally we are dead in trespasses and sins.

Christ is the Revealer of the Father. He had to say to the lawyers when here on earth, “Ye have taken away the key of knowledge: ye entered not in yourselves, and them that were entering in, ye hindered.” But it was not, and is not so with Christ. He was faithful in speaking out the Father’s words, and instead of hindering, He has laid down His life for us, and opened up a new and living way into the Father’s presence.

A person who has the key has the power to admit into the house or to let out. Christ says, “I have the keys of hell (hades) and the grave” (Rev. 1:18). Satan seems to have had the keys before Christ died. We have a picture given to us of the state of things in Luke 11:21-22. Satan had the keys-the authority over the unseen world-before Christ came, but Christ was manifest to destroy the works of the devil.

A person who has the key of the house has authority over the house, and hence a right to enter into all the rooms. Christ has authority over His Church, for we are all His house.

There are two words rendered “power” in the New Testament, one meaning strength, and the other authority.

In reference to the past. “I have power (authority) to lay it (life) down, and I have power (authority) to take it again. This commandment have I received from My Father.” Christ was sent by the Father to die. He had His authority from His Father for all that He did; hence when Pilate boasted of the authority he had, and said to Him, “Knowest thou not that I have power (authority) to crucify Thee, and have power (authority) to release Thee?” Christ replied, “Thou couldest have no power (authority) at all against Me except it were given thee from above” (John 19:10-11).

In reference to the present. Christ is the Head of all principality and authority (Col. 2:10), and because He is such, He has authority to make those who believe in Him children of God, for “As many as received Him, to them gave He power (authority) to become the children of God” (John 1:12). Yea, all authority in heaven and on earth has been given to Him, as He says, “All power (authority) is given unto Me in heaven and on earth” (Matt. 28:18), and that was the reason He gave His disciples for sending them forth to preach the Gospel and make disciples.

In reference to the future. Christ having the key of David, has reference to the fact: that He is yet to reign over the House of David (see Psalm 132:11; Acts 2:30; Isaiah 9:6-7; Ezek. 34:23-24; 37:24-25; Luke 1:32-33). Christ shall literally stand upon the Mount of Olives, overcome the enemies of Israel, gather out everything that offends, and reign over this earth one thousand years.

55. Christ as the Opener and Shutter ← Prior Section
57. Christ as the Son of Man Next Section →

The Blue Letter Bible ministry and the BLB Institute hold to the historical, conservative Christian faith, which includes a firm belief in the inerrancy of Scripture. Since the text and audio content provided by BLB represent a range of evangelical traditions, all of the ideas and principles conveyed in the resource materials are not necessarily affirmed, in total, by this ministry.


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