You’re never trapped when you know the code.
I learned this the other day when I went to a nursing home to call on one of our church members. Getting into the facility was easy. You push a big green button on the outside of the door, you wait to hear a little click, and you pull on the door open. Pretty simple.
I made my visit and returned to the door I used to enter the building. This time there was no big green button to push. There was a keypad with 4 rows of 3 keys, 12 keys in all, just like the keypad on your telephone with both numbers and letters. I ignored it at first.
I figured the door would just open. It didn’t.
I pushed a little harder, hoping that it would budge at my insistence. It didn’t.
Just to make sure I wasn’t a total idiot, I pulled. It didn’t move.
I looked back and the keypad. I studied it. I pondered my situation. I heard a voice from somewhere behind me.
I turned and saw a man sitting on a couch. He was a resident at the nursing home. He repeated himself. Though I heard him better, I still did not understand what he was saying.
He got up from where he was sitting, looked at me with a smile, and said, “The Code. You have to push in the code.”
He then began to type in the correct numbers in the correct order followed by the pound (#) sign. There was a click, and then he opened the door. I was free. My confusion was gone. I thanked the man. He nodded. I left.
You have to know the code to find freedom.
I don’t remember the code he entered, but I started thinking about a good code to use the next time I found myself trapped. I hope it will be good for you, too.
Try this code 5-3-7-8-7-#. Go ahead. Type it out on your phone. Get used to it. Practice it. Practice it every day so that you can know it by heart, so you won’t have to think about it when the time comes. Learn it well. 5-3-7-8-7-#. 5-3-7-8-7-#. 5-3-7-8-7-#. J-E-S-U-S-#. J-E-S-U-S-#. J-E-S-U-S-#.
As long as I have the code, I’m going to be alright, even if the door doesn’t open.
That code worked for the two men we are looking at in worship this Sunday. Their names were Paul and Silas. Their crime—freeing a girl from demon possession. How’s that a crime? You’ll have to show up on Sunday to find out.
There were beaten, imprisoned and awaiting trial. Their day had gone incredibly bad. But at the end of the day, at the midnight hour, instead of licking their wounds or lamenting their fate, we find them praying and singing hymns.
They were practicing the code.
While they were singing, and praying, and trusting and believing, the earth shook and the doors to the prison cells opened.
The jailer rushed in. When he saw the doors swinging, he pulled out his sword to end his life.
The jailer did not know the code.
Paul, seeing what was about to happen, yelled to the jailer and stopped him.
“We’re all here,” Paul said. “We’ve not gone anywhere!”
The doors were open, why didn’t they go? The path was cleared. Why did they stick around?
The jailer ran into the cell where Paul and Silas had been singing. He fell at their feet and begged them, “What must I do to be saved?”
Paul gave him the code. “Believe in the Lord Jesus and be saved.”
The code. Those who have it are always free. Those who don’t are always in bondage.