The National Catholic Review

"I will place the key of the House of David on his shoulder; when he opens, no one shall shut, when he shuts, no one shall open" (Isaiah 22,22).  The word of God, through Isaiah, promised a king to replace a monarch who ruled Israel badly.  The Christian tradition saw in Jesus the great king, with absolute power: what he opens, no one shuts.  If Jesus' great compassion made him like us 'in all things but sin', we have in him as well an assurance that nothing will keep us from the fullest life and happiness God has prepared for everyone He has created.  Creation is the work of love, and that love knows no completion except in perfect union and happiness.  Jesus has opened for us a door that had been firmly closed; no one will now shut that door.  Once through that door, he has shown us the way to perfection.  Not only has he shown us the way, but Jesus is the way.  It is then not only in following his teaching that will bring us to him, with no door any longer closed against our journey.  It is also union with him that we have no successful opposition.  In this latter way, we can think about the words of St. Paul: "the supreme good of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord...that I may find him and be found in him...to know the power of his resurrection...indeed I have been taken possession of by Jesus Christ" (Phil 3,8-10).  This union with Jesus and in Jesus goes far beyond the following of Jesus' teachings.  It is a oneness which the Christian Tradition knows as 'mysticism', 'mystical union'.  And this is a union which already participates in the joy which is the ultimate goal of following the path of obedience to God.  Union with Jesus assures us of no door keeping us from his embrace, for his is the power, the supreme power to join us to himself - no matter the opposition that wants to keep us from him, to shut the door between us.