Key of David, and Sceptre of the house of Israel, that openeth and no man shutteth, and shutteth and no man openeth, come to liberate the prisoner from the prison, and them that sit in darkness, and in the shadow of death.

O Clavis David,
et sceptrum domus Israël,
qui aperis, et nemo claudit,
claudis, et nemo aperuit:
veni, et educ vinctum
de domo carceris,
sedentem in tenebris,
et umbra mortis.

The curious title “key” , given to Christ in this antiphon, is taken from the prophet Isaia’s book, where Eliachim is prophetized to be master of the Palace instead of Shebna; the true words are related in the antiphon: I will put David’s house key on his shoulders; he will be able to open  and nobody will be able to close; he will open and nobody will close” (IS.22-22). In the Apocalypse Christ is the prophecy.
     Jesus is the Saint, the True, “Who has David’s key: when He opens nobody can close, and if He close, nobody can open. (AP 3-7). He is also Israel’s home sceptre”, as one can read in the Genesis, where God garantees to Jacob “the sceptre will not be taken away from Judah”, thinking to the Messiah.
     The key represents the power. In fact, in the ancient times, the keys were given to an administrator to take care of the owner’s property: This act was a true ceremony; the keys were put on the administrator’s shoulders to show how heavy responsability he was going to carry . In this sense we read Isaia’s prophecy, that’s the introductive antiphon in Christmas night : “ A Child was born to us, a son has been given to us: The power is  leaning on His shoulders “. (IS. 9-5)
     Christ’s power is the risen Christ’s power, offering a deep meaning to all the Bible. The Apocalypse shows Christ sitting on the throne, having a manuscript rolled in His hands, written on both sides, with seven seals.
     “ I saw a powerful angel proclaiming loudly: “ Who is worthy of opening the Book and loosening its seals?”  But nobody, nor in the sky, nor in the earth, nor underground could open the Book and read It. I was crying as they didn’t find anybody worthy of opening the Book and reading It. One of the Elders told me : ‘ Don’t cry any more; the lion from Israel wan, David’s sprout will open the Book and loosen its seals’.
     Then I saw, in the middle of a throne, a lamb, surrounded by four living beings and Elders, as He was going to be sacrificed. He had seven hornes and seven eyes which are symbols of the seven God’s Spirits sent all over the world . And the Lamb came ant took the book from the right hand  from Whom sitting onthe throne. After taking it, the four living beings and the twenty four Elders prostrated before the Lamb, each one of them helding an harp and golden cups with sences , id est all the prayers of the Saints.  They were singing a new song “You are worthy of taking the book  and loosening its seals, for you have been sacrificed and redeemed  with  your blood all the people, of any tribe, language, nation , in the name of God. “ AP. 5-9
     The new humanity acquired by the Word and offered to God through the Cross, is the “key” to open God’s heart to us and receive His Grace. It’s very meaningful the happening when Christ was baptized (GV 1-51): the Sky opens and shows the Saint Trinity. About the power of Christ as man and God at one time, St Teresa from Avila writes: “ I have always known and I always see clearly that we are loved by God  and receive His Grace through Christ as man himself. I have tested it. And God Himself told me. I have seen that we have to cross this door, if we want to contemplate the Supreme Majesty’s secrets “. ( St. Teresa, ‘ The book of the life’ 22- 6,7)
     In these words we find  the same meaning of St. John’s Evangile : “ Nobody  goes towards the Father  if not through Him” (GV. 1-51). The ‘key’ reminds us that the keys were given also to St. Peter in order to lead the Church, with the same Christ’s power for edifying His people.  He has the power to close and to open, to loosen and to tie. It’s a service power for edifying all the Christian people who are in His Lord’s Hands.
 The key represents the door as well, as Jesus  says “ I am the door for my sheep” (GV- 10,9). For obtaining the Salvation you need crossing this Door connecting us with God. We crossed It by the Baptisme, all Sacraments door, by which we have been introduced to Christ, the glorious  Christ’s humanity; He opens the door of our heart to God  and to His sweet love by the ‘key’of His Grace, through misterious but sensible signs. We can’t live without them and going back to Betlehem is coming  back to Christ working miracles into us through the seven saint signs of the Salvation

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