Yesterday, the Lord granted me a deeper understanding into His mind and will. I read and reblogged a post, which talked about how our service to God counts for nothing, and is in fact sinful, without love. It was not as though I didn’t know that before. It is in fact an old lesson that I have shared a few times myself. Recently, I shared the same message in my CONFESSIONS OF AN EX-‘JESUS CHRISTIAN’. However, as I shared my commentary on yesterday’s post, my eyes were opened to something I hadn’t noticed before.
On the Day of Judgement, when the Son of Man separates His sheep from the goats, there will be a TEST! It is not a test that we will write or sit, it is a test that He will perform, to distinguish one from the other. And those who are among the sheep shall be saved, and those who are among the goats shall be condemned (Matt 25:31-46).
“Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven” (Matt 7:21).
It was after saying this that the Lord said: “Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity” (Matt 7:22-23). It is therefore a very dangerous teaching that “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved“, even though it is written in the Bible (Rom 10:13). Or even “everyone who believes in Jesus Christ shall be saved” (John 3:15-16, Rom 10:9, Acts 10:43, Acts 13:39)… Such statements, even by Jesus, need to be qualified in light of all He said, with an understanding of what it means to believe and to call upon Jesus, and to follow Jesus.
The truth is that MANY people will miss road (Matt 7:13-14)! Many people will come to a realisation on that Day that they never knew Jesus, that they have wasted their lives preparing for the wrong test…that they were called but not chosen (Matt 22:14)! In the parable that Jesus gave before this teaching, He talked about a ‘wedding garment’, which the man who was thrown out did not have on. In truth, the man had been invited, as were all the people who were gathered from the streets to come and take their seats in the Kingdom, but this man didn’t care to get to know his Host, who had invited him, and His will, so that he might come prepared for the feast…but he believed enough to attend.
Many ‘Christians’ are like this man. They heard the message of the Gospel. They believed that it was true and confessed that they would attend this feast (i.e. they are saved). But that was where it ended. They didn’t read the invitation which talked about the wedding garment and colours, or if they did, they ignored or disregarded it. These don’t honour the invitation or the Host enough to make themselves ready, and when the Bridegroom comes, they will be found wanting (Matt 25:1-13).
You might be wondering why it seems so hard… Surely, God wouldn’t make it so difficult to follow Him… How can you know for sure that you know Jesus, that you are among His Chosen? How can you know that you are not working iniquity, but doing the will of God? What is this test that God will perform on that Day?
The Lord granted me the answer to this last night. He said: My Reflection.
If you think about it, that is the easiest test, if you want to know if something is real or counterfeit; you look for a defining quality. On that Day, God will look at each one of us to see Jesus, because it is only those who reflect Jesus that truly know Him! And that is all the test! Knowing Jesus is the ENTIRETY of our calling…and it is in fact the entirety of our GIFT too (John 17:3).
We may be concerned about works, righteousness, obedience and bearing fruit, but all these things flow naturally from those who KNOW Jesus. You cannot have a relationship with Jesus, talk to Him everyday, walk with Him and learn from Him, and not begin to LOOK like Him and do what He does (John 14:12)! Like Mary and Martha, the better part is to spend time knowing Jesus, rather than being busy trying to please Him, without actually knowing what pleases Him (Luke 10:38-42)! We never have to worry about trying to be like Him, we will become like Him as we fellowship with Him, through His Holy Spirit…and as we do so, we will do God’s will! It really is that simple.
Yet, many set themselves up for failure by the way they study and interpret the Bible. They are not Chosen because they did not CHOOSE Him, when He gave them the chance! They chose rather to fulfill all righteousness without getting to know Jesus. They chose the letter of the written Word over the Spirit (2 Cor 3:6)! They studied long and hard the Scriptures, but missed Jesus… They missed the Spirit of Grace and Truth, and received only the Law, which has no power to save (Gal 2:19-21, Rom 8:2-4, John 1:17).
When Jesus says repeatedly, “If you love Me, you will obey My commandments” (John 14:15-31), He is not so much telling you to obey as He is stating a FACT! Obedience flows from genuine LOVE. But we can obey, and still miss the opportunity of KNOWING God, just like the Pharisees (Matt 5:20). His one commandment is this: “That ye love one another, as I have loved you” (John 15:12). However, we CANNOT fulfill this commandment without knowing how and how much Jesus has loved and loves us…
Yes, Jesus wants and commands our obedience, but He also knows that we cannot fulfill all righteousness WITHOUT Him! The gift He came to give was literally HIMSELF, in every way. First, He gave His Body to be crucified in our place (John 12:32), and secondly, His Spirit to fellowship with us (John 16:13), and teach us all things…enabling us to obey, mature and bear fruit. Without His Spirit, we cannot bear His fruit (John 15:1-6). Without the Holy Spirit, we are not Christ’s (Rom 8:9). The ‘wedding garment’ is in fact the indwelling Holy Spirit, that none should be found without, and its colour is LOVE (1 John 4:16, Eph 1:13, 2 Cor 1:22).
Ask, therefore, for the Spirit of God, knowing that it is God’s will for you to have It and be saved (Luke 11:13, Luke 12:32, 1 Tim 2:4, 2 Pet 3:9). Receive, by faith, His Spirit. Choose His Spirit, let Him be your Teacher, to enlighten your paths. Abide in Him, learn to discern and heed His voice, grow in Him…and like a tree planted on good soil, you will bear fruit (Matt 13:8). And God will be pleased to receive you into His Kingdom, when He sees His reflection in you.
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