Summary: To know that works alone are not sufficient to make it to heaven
"I NEVER KNEW YOU" by George Crumbly
Matthew 7: 15-23
Sunday AM July 28, 2002
I love this scripture here in Matthew. There is some pretty straight stuff here. Jesus is winding down the sermon on the mount. So many look at Jesus as a wimp, someone that you could push around, someone that was weak. Jesus always told it just like it was. He never backed down from sin. I believe Jesus is looking for folks he can count on to do the job He has called them to do. In our society today we find a lot of phoniness. You can find phoniness in the churches today. Not only are they in the churches but some are leading the churches.
We start off today with the "Fruit Test."
Matthew 7: verses 15-20
Jesus finishes His sermon by challenging His listeners to discern true teaching by it’s good fruit. False Teachers or Prophets may look as innocent as sheep, they may use religious language, they may even sound spiritual, but if their lives do not bear the good fruit of obedience to Jesus teaching then they are FALSE GUIDES.
You see Jesus said that a "good tree" will bear "good fruit" and that a "corrupt tree" will bring forth "evil fruit". No matter what we think or what we may have been told, this is the way it is!!
When you see folks bearing "evil fruit" then according to Jesus teachings they are corrupt.
(Verse 18) "A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit."
It is not going to happen.When folks bear "evil fruit" then they are corrupt. This isn’t something I said, it is what Jesus said. We need to take a look at our own fruit and see what kind of fruit we are actually bearing.
(Verse 20) "Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them."
That seems fairly simple, right? We will be known by the fruit in which we bear. By the works that we display. By the works that are manifested.
Now Jesus goes into my favorite scripture here in Matthew
Salvation isn’t just for those that PROFESS to obey, but rather for those that actually do obey. (John 14:15) "If ye love me you will keep my commandments."
Jesus is saying if you really do love me - then you will do what I tell you to do. If you are actually doing what Jesus tells you to do then it will show it in your life. Not everyone that stands up & says "I love the Lord" is going to heaven.
Jesus is saying that they say they love Him but they really don’t mean it.
(Matthew 15:8) This people draweth nigh unto me with their mouth and honoreth me with their lips; but their heart is far from me."
Jesus is quoting Isaiah here, yet He is making His point. The people honor Him, they worship Him, they love Him with their lips, (just talk) when their heart is far from God.
Today as you sit in the congregation the Lord looks at your heart:
- As you walked in the door He was looking at your heart
- As you became involved in the Sunday School lesson, He looked at your heart
- As you sang praises today He was looking at your heart
- As you gave an offering He looked at your heart
- As you sit right now He is looking at your heart
What does He see as He looks into your heart? Man looks on the outward, he judges according to what he sees, yet God looks at the heart.
(This week as God gave me this message I thought about what is important and what is not important. I thought about the church, about lost souls, my family, about this community. THen I realized the most important thing in my life? going to Heaven)
You see, if I’m not sure today whether I am going to heaven then all of the studying, all of the preaching, all of the visiting, witnessing, whatever isn’t going to matter at all. Jesus is talking to the church, to His followers, church folks.
Look at what He is saying here, "in that day." Whether you believe it or not, there is coming a day. A day in which we will give an account of how we have lived here on this earth. We will be judged.
(Matthew 12:36) "But I say unto you, that every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give an account thereof in the day of judgment."
(Romans 14:12) "So then every one of us shall give an account of himself to God."
Jesus goes on telling that these folks will claim to have done all these things in the name of Christ. "Oh, I cleaned the church, I cut the grass, I played the piano, I kept the books, I took up the offering, I taught a class, I sang, I preached, I did so many wonderful things in your name."