Matthew 4: 17 “ Repent, for the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand.” The very words of Christ Jesus, as He began His earthly ministry and to teach all of us about the heavenly kingdom of God.
Throughout Christ’s ministry his teachings and words were directed to the spiritual poverty and the depravity of man’s sinfulness. He taught us that believing in Him through faith, with a sincere heart, and obedience, was, and still is, the only way to eternal life in heaven.
For as Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior said in John 14: 6 “ I Am the way, the truth and the life; no one comes to the Father except through Me.’
Let these addition thirteen verses of truth, as spoken by Jesus Christ (God in the flesh), sink deeply into every fiber of your heart, mind and soul. Let it deepen our understanding of God’s heavenly kingdom and our hope of dwelling in the house of the Lord forever.
Matthew 5: 17 “ Do not think that I came to destroy the Law or the Prophets; I did not come to destroy but to fulfill. (the law). (emphasis mine) The ten commandments (Exodus 20) are the moral laws of God and reflect the will of God’s holy character. They still apply today as they did 3400 years ago. They were put in place to show us the sinfulness of our sins and our inability as humans to fully meet God’s perfect standards. Only Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior obeyed the laws perfectly.
Matthew 5: 20 “ 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.” The Pharisees lived as self-righteous people on the outside - full of hypocrisy, pride, deceit and corruption on the inside. They taught that you can earn your way to heaven and placed themselves above God with their rituals, ceremonies and sacrifices. They worshiped and praised themselves and the gifts, rather than the one true God, the giver and creator of the gifts.
God’s greatest commandment was given clear back in Deuteronomy 6: 5,6 “ You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength, and these words which I command you today shall be in your heart.” So remarkable that these leaders of God’s people were not following God’s commandments, as written by Moses, 1400 years before Christ our Lord and Savior, came into the world.
Yet, here we are today, 2000 years from God’s greatest commandment, and still unable to fully grasp God’s divine message. Even with the knowledge of Jesus Christ’s sacrificial death on the cross and still, many, are unable to completely love God with all our hearts, minds and soul. Still choosing our ways of living over God’s loving ways -still loving the things of the world - still believing we can earn our way to heaven.
Matthew 7: 13,14 “ Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it.” Which gate have you chosen to follow ? The wide worldly gate full of its lusts, desires and passions or the narrow gate full of all the spiritual riches of heaven, as a true follower of Christ ?
Matthew 8: 21 “ Not everyone who says to Me, Lord, Lord, shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father.” Do you fear the Lord and worship him in reverent awe and the beauty of His holiness ? Do you spend time daily in prayer and reading His words of truth ? Are you allowing His love to fill your heart with His presence ?
Matthew 10: 33 “ Whoever denies Me before men, him I will also deny before My Father who is in heaven.” Do you proclaim, profess and declare your love of Christ to friends, co-workers and people you know ?
Jesus commands us in Matthew 5:13,14 to be the salt and the light of the world. Are you obeying this command and walking in the light ? See also Romans 10:9 “ If you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus Christ and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.”
Matthew 12: 37 “ For by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.” What defiles a person comes from the heart and can either destroy or encourage others in our relationships. Anger, lies, complaining, contentions, and hatred coming out of a person’s mouth are a sin and an affront to God. Choose carefully the words that you speak and spend more time listening rather than talking.
Matthew 16: 28 “ Assuredly, I say to you, there are some standing here who shall not taste death till they see the Son of Man coming in His kingdom.” “What profit is it to a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul ? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul ?” The very questions Jesus posed to His disciples in Matthew 16: 26. We must all ask ourselves the same question and follow Christ into everlasting life through faith.
Matthew 18: 3 “ Assuredly, I say to you, unless you are converted and become as little children, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven.” Just like a small child’s relationship with their parents: a small child cannot survive without their parent’s love, provisions, care and comforts: small children completely humble themselves, completely trust, obey, and rely on their parents to meet all of their needs. The same is true of us in our relationship with Christ and our helpless state in need of salvation.
Matthew 22: 14 “ Many are called but few are chosen.” The gospel of Christ is heard by many and is readily available and open to all. Following Christ’s call is difficult and few respond. The desires and temptations of the world pulls us apart and separates us from God. Those true believers who have responded have come into the knowledge of truth, repented, have submitted to Christ, with a willingness to obey His will and His word. It is this willingness of our hearts, minds and souls that help us with our faith as we grow into a relationship with our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
John 1: 10-13 “ He was in the world and the world was made through Him, and the world did not know Him. He came to His own, and His own did not receive Him. But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name; who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God. Do you truly know God ? Have you truly accepted Him, trust Him, and received Him into your heart, as your Lord and Savior ?
John 3: 3 “ Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” and in verse 5 “ unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God.” Has the Holy Spirit filled your heart and made you alive to the divine love and peace God has for you ? Are you in a personal loving relationship with Christ ?
John 3: 6,7 “ That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Do not marvel that I said to you, You must be born again.”
These words of truth as spoken by Jesus are meant to encourage you and enlighten you to the promises of eternal and everlasting life into the kingdom of heaven. God is Spirit and God is life. His greatest desire is to have a loving, personal, relationship with you. Accept Him, embrace Him and spend time with Him in prayer and reading His holy words of truth.
Start today – Don’t delay and change your life - Let the words of God speak to you and be filled with a peace and joy beyond measure.
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