It’s a sobering thing to realize that many who profess to know Jesus Christ as Savior really, in fact, do not. Jesus makes this abundantly clear in Matthew 7:21ff. These unconverted religious people will know the language to use and the works to ape, yet the Lord Jesus declares them workers of iniquity who will be cast out of His sight forever.
To the Lord Christ, the key to being a true citizen of the Kingdom of Heaven is one’s conformity to the will of His Father. So the issue is not whether I have prayed a prayer, walked an aisle, or made a decision. The issue is, am I doing the will of the heavenly Father? Does this smack of a works-oriented salvation? It could be perceived that way, but the immediate context reveals that Jesus is not talking about the means of salvation, but the evidence of it. A truly regenerated person doesn’t merely profess Jesus as Lord, his life reflects that Jesus is His Lord. He doesn’t simply do some religious works; his entire life is transformed by the Word of God so that the way he does his job, interacts with his wife and children, participates at his local church, relates to people in the community, etc., are all determined by the will of God.
This is the only way to live! Jesus concludes Matthew 7 and the entire Sermon on the Mount with a summary. Allow your life to be transformed by the Word of God so that your attitudes, actions, and desires are conformed to the will of God, and yours is a firmly established, indestructible life. Ignore the will of God to live as you choose, and your destiny is destruction. On what foundation are you building—your will, or God’s?
Hymn for Reflection: A Child of the King
My Father is rich in houses and lands,
He holdeth the wealth of the world in His hands!
Of rubies and diamonds, of silver and gold,
His coffers are full, He has riches untold.
I’m a child of the King,
A child of the King:
With Jesus my Savior,
I’m a child of the King.
My Father’s own Son, the Savior of men,
Once wandered on earth as the poorest of them;
But now He is pleading our pardon on high,
That we may be His when He comes by and by.
I once was an outcast stranger on earth,
A sinner by choice, an alien by birth,
But I’ve been adopted, my name’s written down,
An heir to a mansion, a robe and a crown.
A tent or a cottage, why should I care?
They’re building a palace for me over there;
Though exiled from home, yet still may I sing:
All glory to God, I’m a child of the King.