Revelation 22:14,15 “Blessed are those who do His commandments, that they may have the right to the tree of life, and may enter through the gates into the city. But outside are dogs and sorcerers and sexually immoral and murderers and idolaters, and whoever loves and practices a lie.”
Thank God for Jesus!
At first glance, since I don’t consider myself a ‘dog’ or sorcerer or sexually immoral, certainly not a murderer or idolater and I don’t love or practice lies – ‘I’m in!!!!!’ Then I remember Matthew 5. Jesus said; “. . . whoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart.” (Matthew 5:28) Jesus said; “You have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not murder, and whoever murders will be in danger of the judgment.’ But I say to you that whoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment. And whoever says to his brother, ‘Raca!’ shall be in danger of the council. But whoever says, ‘You fool!’ shall be in danger of hell fire.” (Matthew 5:21,22)
What about sorcery? Divination? The Prophet Samuel nailed King Saul for going his own way and not listening to God; “Has the LORD as much delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices As in obeying the voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, And to heed than the fat of rams. For rebellion is as the sin of divination, And insubordination is as iniquity and idolatry. Because you have rejected the word of the LORD, He has also rejected you from being king.” (1 Samuel 15:22,23) It’s all in the attitude! Am I rebellious towards God? Do I have an unchecked attitude of insubordination? No one tells me what to do!?? How about you?
Jesus tells us; “For I say to you, that unless your righteousness exceeds the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven.” (Matthew 5:20) And the Pharisees and scribes never or rarely broke any religious rules. King Saul had good looks (1 Samuel 9:2) and started out strong in the Lord (1 Samuel 10,11) but his self righteous pride brought him down. What he thought was the ‘little stuff’ were huge flaws in God’s eyes. Saul had a ‘post-modern’ mindset, centuries ahead of his time. He followed God in principle most of the time but was flexible in the practicalities; “. . . I have sinned: for I have transgressed the commandment of the Lord, and thy words: because I feared the people, and obeyed their voice.” (1 Samuel 15:24)
The Bible tells me that far better, braver and moral men than me have started out strong and failed because of their own pride, rebelliousness and idolatry. ‘Being in’ isn’t a matter of my strength or righteousness but His; “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from the wrath of God through Him.” (Romans 5:8,9) Thank God for Jesus because I’d be toast without Him!
Don’t look to the worldly church for your salvation – it’s a bigger prostitute than any painted harlot prancing up and down a big city street; “With whom the kings of the earth have committed fornication, and the inhabitants of the earth have been made drunk with the wine of her fornication. . . . and I saw a woman sit upon a scarlet coloured beast, full of names of blasphemy, having seven heads and ten horns. And the woman was arrayed in purple and scarlet colour, and decked with gold and precious stones and pearls, having a golden cup in her hand full of abominations and filthiness of her fornication: . . . . And I saw the woman drunken with the blood of the saints, and with the blood of the martyrs of Jesus: . . . “(Revelation 17:2-6)
Matthew Henry rightly warns us about this kind of religion; “We cannot but wonder at the oceans of Christian blood shed by men called Christians; yet when we consider these prophecies, these awful deeds testify to the truth of the gospel. And let all beware of a splendid, gainful, or fashionable religion.” Satan and his beast is the pimp of the worldly church and she’ll seduce you and destroy you if you don’t know and love God’s Word! Fake religion is Satan’s weapon of mass damnation!
Jesus is coming and He’s coming in force; “Now I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse. And He who sat on him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness He judges and makes war. His eyes were like a flame of fire, and on His head were many crowns. He had a name written that no one knew except Himself. He was clothed with a robe dipped in blood, and His name is called The Word of God. And the armies in heaven, clothed in fine linen, white and clean, followed Him on white horses.” (Revelation 19:11-14)
Repentance is the only way to get right with God; “Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord, . . . ” (Acts 3:19)
Come Lord Jesus!