There are only two references to the ‘Key of David’ in all of scripture. (Rev 3:7-8 & Isa 22:20-24) Neither one specifically defines it, but they do allude to defining David’s heart attitude toward God. Rather than just doing what he was expected to do, David looked for God’s intent and sought to honour His desires. The Key describes a heartfelt desire by an individual to want to honour God more than just obeying Him. I believe the Key of David has a distinct correlation between apathy versus delight among Believers.
Obedience has two levels.
- Surface level obedience is to do as you are told or expected to do.
- Deeper level obedience seeks to understand the intent, desire and reason for the obedience
This is the core issue in the ‘Key of David’. It is to know the desire and purpose of God’s heart, to obey Him, AND then to go beyond that to honour His purpose for asking for obedience.
Bondage vs Freedom
The sixth day of Creation records the first instance that God gave an endowment of ‘spirit’. Unlike any other creature, mankind has the ability to think, decide and choose. At the ‘Fall’ we lost the freedom of intimate communion with God and became subjected to bondage. We have the difficult task of moving from bondage to freedom. I visualize this as a line of continuum:
Bondage to Freedom Continuum
– 100 0 +100
bondage obedience freedom
- Bondage (-100) is when our inner self makes futile and unsuccessful attempts to control our wayward actions
- Obedience (‘0’) is doing right things but not whole heartedly wanting to (eg: white knuckle religion)
- Freedom is beyond obedience, and is defined as having no desire to do what is wrong.
Obedience is not freedom. On the continuum from Bondage to Freedom obedience is a necessary stage to pass through but it is not the place to stop. Unfortunately it is easy to stop there, or even to stop at +10 or +20 because those places are much higher achievements than our former position of minus something. But obedience is only part way between bondage and freedom. The ultimate goal is to have change in our inner self which results in abundant and energetic spiritual life.
There is a unique comparison of ‘doors’ in the messages to the Philadelphia Believers vs the Laodicea Body. The Philadelphians hear “What He opens no one can shut, and what He shuts no one can open.” (Rev 3:7). Another door, describing the Laodicean’s, seems to be one that they have closed to Him. They are behind the closed door. “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.” (Rev 3:20).
Within my understanding of the Key of David it appears that the Laodiceans were being obedient but their obedience was only credited as lukewarm. They were not in bondage, but neither were they free. So in reality their obedience had closed the door, and the One they claimed obedience to, was shut on the outside. (note: this is not the door to an unbeliever’s heart.)
May you be blessed with the unique realization of His impartation of His glory to you, in you, for you and conferred on you … john (Rom 8:18)
(original post Aug 18 2014)