Obeying or Not Obeying?

Matthew 7:24-27 ESV

“Everyone then who hears these words of mine and does them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house, but it did not fall, because it had been founded on the rock. And everyone who hears these words of mine and does not do them will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell, and great was the fall of it.”

A few verses before this we had the message from Jesus that we are to enter (the kingdom of heaven is understood here) by the narrow (restricted, regulated) gate (door, and Jesus is the door). For the gate is wide (broad, all-embracing) and the way is easy (not hard, no restrictions) that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow (restricted, controlled) and the way is hard (not easy, but regulated) that leads to life, and those who find it are few. This was in Matthew 7:13-14.

A few more verses further we read: “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?’ And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.’” Matthew 7:21-23.

So, these verses set the stage for the verses we are going to be discussing next. For what they teach us is that the Christian life is not an easy road with no restrictions. We can’t just profess faith in Jesus Christ and have our sins forgiven and be promised heaven as our eternal home and then just live however we want. We have to obey our Lord’s commands (New Covenant) or we will not enter the kingdom of heaven. And we have to forsake our sins and walk in holiness and in righteousness, in the power of God.

And again, the subject is obedience. If we hear the words of the Lord (or just read them) and we do what they say (we obey), then we are wise people who are building our lives on the Rock, Jesus Christ, and not on the pleasures of the flesh. So when the trials and tribulations of this life come against us to test our faith we do not fall, but we stand secure on the Rock and on the Scriptures, and on the faith God has granted to us who believe. And we will enter into the kingdom of heaven when we die.

But if we hear (or read) the words of the Lord, and we do not put them into practice, then we are foolish (unwise) people. For we are not building our lives on the Rock, Jesus Christ, but on sinking sand, and we will sink with it. Then, when the storms of life come against us, we will fall, because our lives are not securely fixed on the Rock but on sinking sand. And sinking sand represents all that is fleshly and of this sinful world. And so when judgment comes at the end, we will then hear Jesus say, “I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.”

And it isn’t as though we have not been warned who make professions of faith in Jesus Christ. All throughout the New Testament we are given warning after warning that we must no longer make sin our practice, but that righteousness and holiness and walks of obedience to our Lord must be what we practice or we will not inherit eternal life with God. For it doesn’t matter what our lips have professed if we still walk in sin and not in righteousness and not in obedience to our Lord.

Too many people today are being convinced that they can believe (usually not defined) in Jesus Christ and now their sins are forgiven (past, present, and future) and heaven is guaranteed them when they die regardless of what kind of lives they live while they are still on the earth. But that is a lie from hell. We can’t just live however we want or we do not have eternal life with God. We can’t keep on in deliberate and habitual sin or we will die in our sins and heaven is, thus, not our eternal destiny.

So, we need to take this seriously. If we don’t, then heaven is not what awaits us when we die. Hell is. For not everyone goes to heaven. Not even all moral people go to heaven. Not even some of the kindest and sweetest people we know walking this earth go to heaven unless they have humbled themselves before God, repented of (turned from) their sins, and now they are walking in obedience to the Lord and to his commands and no longer in deliberate and habitual sin. For God sets the rules, which we must follow.

[Matt 7:21-23; Matt 24:9-14; Lu 9:23-26; Rom 1:18-32; Rom 2:6-8; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-14,24; Rom 12:1-2; Rom 13:11; 1 Co 6:9-10,19-20; 2 Co 5:10,15,21; 1 Co 1:18; 1 Co 15:1-2; 2 Tim 1:8-9; Heb 9:28; 1 Pet 1:5; Gal 5:16-21; Gal 6:7-8; Eph 2:8-10; Eph 4:17-32; Eph 5:3-6; Col 1:21-23; Col 3:5-17; 1 Pet 2:24; Tit 2:11-14; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6,24-25; 1 Jn 3:4-10; Heb 3:6,14-15; Heb 10:23-31; Heb 12:1-2; Rev 21:8,27; Rev 22:14-15]

I Take Refuge

An Original Work / September 1, 2018
Based off Psalm 71

O, Lord, I take refuge in You,
For You are my God.
Turn Your ear now to me.

Be my Rock and Fortress
To which I do go.
Deliver me, God. You’re my hope.

My lips now give praise to You, God.
I always have hope,
Since You saved me from sin.

My enemies speak evil
‘gainst me, O God.
Oh, help me, O Lord, rescue me.

The path of my life has been hard.
For, I have had troubles
Too many to bear.

But, You will increase honor,
Restore again.
Your faithfulness, Lord, comforts me.

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