“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 ESV)
We’ll look at two misunderstandings of Christian faith.
One is that Christian faith is all about words you need to say. The other one says it’s all about deeds you do.
We’ll look at words today.
Jesus says people will come to him and say, “Lord, Lord”
Those are good words. Lord denotes respect and honour for Jesus.
There is a connection to God’s name in the Old Testament. They even say it twice – this is no lazy acknowledgement.
But the motivation for saying these words is wrong. They are using good words like a password to get through the gates to heaven.
We’ve had several hacking attempts on Redeem the Commute, where computers try to guess our password with enough attempts. Guessing the password may get you in, but it doesn’t mean you belong in the admin section of our site! Guessing the passcode to a celebrity’s home doesn’t mean you know them.
Some act as if knowing the correct password gets you into heaven. Some think there is a particular prayer you have to pray, and that’s all that matters.
That’s a misunderstanding because it makes it seem as if a magic, superstitious incantation is all God needs from us. That would mean we can do what we want – we could believe that we’ve already bought our ticket to heaven, so who cares what we do until then! But this is not true.
It would also mean Christians could manipulate people to make them say words out of fear that they don’t understand or follow through on.
It would also lead to some ridiculous deathbed confessions…where we could try to get people to say those words before they die, or people could delay saying them as long as possible until they were at death’s door.
Now, it’s indispensable to say Jesus is Lord. To avoid those words is to say I don’t want to live in his kingdom, heaven, where he’s Lord. Verbally confessing Jesus is critical. But that’s not all there is to following Jesus.
Tomorrow, we’ll see another perversion of Christian faith. Then on Thursday, we’ll see what Jesus taught it was really all about.
Question: If Christian faith was just about saying the right words, how would this contradict what Jesus said earlier in the Sermon on the Mount, or elsewhere?
Cast: Redeem the Commute
Watch the Video: : https://player.vimeo.com/video/69289097