21“Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. 22Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ 23And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’Well, there it is. It’s my motivation to rail against a lukewarm status. There will be some people to whom Jesus says ‘I never knew you.’ Does that strike a sour chord with anyone else? What if I’m in danger of being one of those? Could I possibly be doing ‘God’s work’ and not know Him? Does he mean that ‘good church folks’ could be in danger of being banished from His Presence?!?
But, did you also see what is required? You can almost miss it if you’re not careful. It’s the end of verse 21: ‘but he who does the will of My Father in heaven.’ The Message Bible says ‘What is required is serious obedience—doing what my Father wills.’ Obedience to the LORD is what is required. But how do we know what He wants us to do? When I first came to know the LORD in a personal way, I was quick to surrender my life to Him and whatever He had for me. One of the first questions I wanted an answer to was ‘How do you know what God sounds like? How can you hear His voice?’ I wanted to obey the LORD, but how could I do His Will if I didn’t know what He sounded like? This seemed like a question that most any Christian could answer. My, how I was surprised. I was told ‘you just know’ or ‘you’ll figure it out.’ What! I thought. ‘What am I supposed to do in the meantime?’ Then, someone finally uncovered the mystery. They told me that God never contradicts His Word and if I would learn/study/read/meditate on His Word, I would know His voice. Wow! Something tangible! So, I am striving (some days
successfully, others not so much) to know His Word and obey His Word. I just can’t stand the thought of Jesus saying to me ‘I never knew you.’ THE END
AFTERWARD: (Ok, so ‘The End’ was a little premature.) With that said, I do need to point out a couple of other Scripture passages. I know that last passage has some of you unsettled to say the least. You might be asking ‘Sarah, are you suggesting that we can lose our salvation?’ or ‘Are you saying that we have to work for our salvation?’ Read these three passages:
27My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. 28I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one will snatch them out of my hand.
2 Timothy 1:9
who according to His own purpose and grace which was given to us in Christ Jesus before time began,
You foolish person, do you want evidence that faith without deeds is useless?
I chose these Scripture passages because they are usually the ones referenced when we begin debating the permanence of Salvation and faith vs works. And, I believe all of these passages to be true. The Word is clear that we can’t be snatched from His hand, but it is also clear that some folks will hear Jesus say ‘I never knew you’ even though they do great things for the Kingdom. I totally believe that I have been saved solely through Jesus Christ and that there is nothing I could do apart from Christ that could put me in right standing with the Father. But, I also believe that if I do not obey the Father and do His Will my faith is dead. So, what does this all mean? I believe God’s Word is without flaw. Because my current understanding is limited doesn’t mean that Gods Word is wrong. I don’t think I’ll ever really get it all until I’m in the Presence of the Word Himself! And, I’m okay with that. For now, I will read His Word and do what it says. That’s enough for me. The real ‘THE END,’ at least til next week…