The Keys to the Kingdom

"And I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.” -Matthew 16:19

Keys represent privilege, trust, and authority. When a teenager receives the keys to the family car, a distinct turning point has been reached. Growth, preparedness, training, and trust converge in the release of this expensive and potentially dangerous vehicle into the care and use of a son or daughter. It’s a big day, but also a weighty moment, for the authority being granted could be as destructive as it is beneficial. Is the child ready?

When Jesus said He would give His disciples “the keys of the kingdom of heaven,” He based it on each one’s coming to the same place of understanding Peter had reached when he said, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God” (v. 16). In other words, “the keys” are given to people who fully recognize Jesus as their King, and who yield to His rule as the mandate for their own lives. It is then that He says, “Now I am transmitting to you a representative role.”

As keys give access, Jesus opens new arenas of possibility for us. As keys verify trust, Jesus entrusts arenas of service to us. And just as keys ignite, lock, and loose, Christ sends us to people and circumstances waiting to be ‘turned on,’ ‘closed in,’ and ‘set free.’

Let’s keep learning about these keys.