Entering the Kingdom

“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.” – Matthew 7:21

Classic Commentary

The Lord has shown that the entrance into the kingdom is through the “strait gate.” He now shows more particularly what is needed to enter. Certain ones are described who cannot enter in. “Not every one” implies that some who say, “Lord, Lord,” etc., shall enter in. Those enterwho do the will of my Father. No one can be a citizen of the kingdom who does not obey the King. Many will say to me in that day. The great day of the Lord. Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in your name? The Lord chooses out of the greatest class of non-doers to show that all such will fail of entrance. They have omitted the one thing needful, a faithful obedience.

“I never knew you” must be accepted in its deeper signification of “recognizing the disciples.” Augustine says that for Christ to say, “I never knew you,” is only another way of saying, “You never knew me.” Away from me, you evildoers! In spite of all their professions they had been evil doers. Their religion expended itself in professions and prayers. Hence, in “that day” they are commanded to depart. What it is to so depart we may learn from Matt. 25:41 . It is evident from this passage that many are self-deceived.

(Adapted from People’s New Testament, Matthew 7:21.)

A Thought to Keep

The mark of a true Christian is faithful obedience in all of life.

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