'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.
(Matthew 7:21 NKJV)
Our part consists in doing the will of our Father
We have heard many radio and TV preachers assure their audience that they will go to heaven if they cry, “Lord, save me!” Their double sin consists in rejecting what the Lord says and replacing it with their own plan. Amazingly, some accept this phony plan and think they are saved by it.
Jesus rejects this false doctrine and replaces it with facts: the only way to go to heaven is to do the will of our Father in heaven. Jesus is the ‘way’ (Jn.14:6). Everything else is an invitation to eternal loss (v.23).
From verse 22 (Mt. 7:22) we learn that going to heaven requires more than mere . . .
- Talk. “Many 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?’”
- Belief. They call Jesus, ‘Lord, Lord,’ and yet they are lost.
- Sincerity. Despite their assumption that they are saved, the Lord disagrees.
- Zeal. Though they have actively engaged in religious works, they are lost.
- Piety. Their good deeds cannot save them. If our own goodness saved, why would Jesus have to come?
- Miracles. They have done ‘many wonders’ and yet are lost.
- Works. Their good works may have outweighed their bad works, but they are still lost.
Someone may wonder how we know these people are lost? After all, most people would assume these people are saved if they claim only a fraction of the good deeds we have itemized. Carefully consider verse 23 – “And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness.’” Lawlessness is not an absence of law, but the practice of unlawful deeds; they break God’s laws.
God has done His part in our salvation. Our part consists in doing the will of our Father in heaven (verse 21). There is no other way.
-- Rick Duggin