MATTHEW 7:21_shall enter into the kingdom of heaven…
There are, and will continue to be, those who are excluded from the kingdom of heaven—both the kingdom of heaven on earth, and the eternal one.
Those who publicly reject Christ are excluded. These are those who have sought the world for their fulfillment. Don’t misunderstand this—they had the same knock on their heart’s door. They are not excluded instantaneously. Jesus pursued them with the same passion He pursued you. Unfortunately, these are people who just flat refuse to feel the need or desire for a savior. These people do not pretend to be sheep—they wear their wolves clothing for all to see.
In this principle, Jesus refers to the ones who do wear the sheep’s clothing. These are the flatterers. They use Christianity to work for them—not to glorify Jesus. Their charisma comes from a different power.
II Corinthians 11:14-15 (KJV) explains this, “And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. 15 Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works.”
The devil uses his power in ways that appear to be good. According to Jesus’ teaching, the devil can even use the people who call Jesus … Lord!
God of All, Help me to not be deceived by the devil’s light. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.
Christ is true light—The devil’s light becomes darkness!
It’s a crazy world! It’s a scary world! It’s a confused world!
Are there real answers? Is there such a thing as true love?
Is there a path to peace?
Daily Devotionals for Salty-Lit-Up Teenage Disciples has answers!
Based entirely on Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount, these devotionals offer power-packed answers for pain-packed problems!
Take this year long journey with Jesus and study His most powerful sermon!
Receive hope when you feel overwhelmed by the circumstances of life over which you have no control.
Be encouraged that God has a purpose for every life – that means you!
Most of all allow yourself to be engulfed by the love of Jesus for an entire year.
Experience the joy of learning that the Giver of Love can teach you how to love!
BEGINS JANUARY 1, 2021!
MATTHEW 7:23_And then…
The day Jesus refers to is the Judgment Day. A day we all face—regardless of whether we believe in it or not. Hebrews 9:27 (KJV), “And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment.”
Everyone is accountable for their lives. Christians are accountable for their salt and light (or lack of it). Unbelievers are held accountable for rejecting Jesus and His sacrifice for them.
As we’ve often said—life is serious business. It is all about choices. Choices are the great equalizer. The great leveler. Everyone lands on the same playing field because everyone has the same basic choices in life. These are spiritual choices. They are not physical circumstances into which we were born—circumstances over which we had no control. When we make the right spiritual choices they supersede our physical circumstances. Spiritual empowerment is stronger than physical empowerment.
I Corinthians 1:27-28 (KJV), “But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty; 28 And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen …”
Judge of All, Praise You that my weaknesses make me strong—for You! In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.
Christ changes my weakness with His strength—Yes!
MATTHEW 7:22_and in thy name done many wonderful works.
The devil has power. He uses it for evil. As we have learned, he can also disguise himself as an angel of light to use his powers in ways which appear to be good.
The word wonderful in this verse can be translated powers. The devil empowers those he enslaves. His goal is to destroy as many Christians as he can before he comes to the time of his doom. Revelation 20 (KJV),“1And I saw an angel come down from heaven, having the key of the bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand. 2 And he laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the Devil, and Satan, and bound him a thousand years, 3 And cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seal upon him, that he should deceive the nations no more, till the thousand years should be fulfilled: and after that he must be loosed a little season. ‘10 And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever.”
The devil knows his end is coming. He blames Jesus and any who are Jesus’ disciples. In the meantime, he enslaves any who do not recognize him beneath the sheep clothing.
He even deceives them into believing they will enter the kingdom of heaven.
Powerful God, I know Your power overpowers the devil and his demons. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.
Christ empowers me – The devil will not enslave me!
MATTHEW 7:22_and in Thy name cast out devils…
Ephesians 6:12 (KJV), “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.”
This verse says there are rulers in the darkness and they have powers. It is good to have a healthy fear of these powers. It helps you live in the reality that the devil is powerful and you are no match for him.
That’s as far as your fear needs to go. When you chose to accept Jesus as your Savior—you defeated the devil. He knows he no longer has power over your eternity. Beware that he will come after you in this life with his deception and lies about your unworthiness.
Colossians 1:12-14 (KJV), “Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet [worthy] to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light:13 Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear son:14 In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins.”
That’s why the devil is defeated.
Be knowledgeable about the spirits of darkness, but do not pursue experiencing first hand any kind of occult practices. Don’t go there, even if you think you are learning something for the good of helping a friend.
Grow strong in Jesus and know your Bible—that’s how you help friends!
Jesus Savior, Praise You for defeating the devil for me! In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.
Christ has defeated the devil and his demons—For me!
MATTHEW 7:22_and in Thy name cast out devils…
Can these people actually cast out demons? Or do they think they can just convince Jesus they can? I don’t claim to know a lot about demonic possession, but I don’t believe there is any power to exhort them but the power of Jesus.
Because life is spiritual as well as physical, we need to have knowledge of both. We primarily focus on the physical until we have had an encounter with Jesus and answer that knock. John 15:16 (KJV), “Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you.”
You didn’t become a Christian because it was your idea. You answered the call, the knock, the pursuing of Jesus. You responded, and now you are doing the asking, seeking, knocking, pursuing. You enter a strait gate and a narrow way to gain wisdom, understanding, and knowledge … of truth. And why do you want truth? By now you’ve got this—to live free!
We must face the reality that the spiritual world consists of darkness as well as light. Jesus calls us to be light and light must be free.
Any encumbrances to light keep it from overcoming darkness.
God of Heaven, Please keep my light free to serve You. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.
Christ’s light is free from encumbrances—He frees mine!
MATTHEW 7:22_have we not prophesied in Thy name…
Jesus refers to people who profess to be Christian. These people believe they have the right to call upon the Lord when He sits on the judgment throne. Do they believe they are clever enough to persuade Jesus to accept them on their terms, not His?
II Thessalonians 2:10-11 (KJV), “And for this cause God shall send them [the unrighteous] strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: 12 That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.”
Good grief! This is more of that stuff I’d just as soon the Bible would leave out! Because the unrighteous will not believe the truth, then it is only natural that they enjoy being unrighteous. God does not stand in the way of them believing lies. Perhaps one of the lies they believe is their good works will allow them to enter the kingdom of heaven.
These people did not get into this kind of shape because God did not care enough to pursue them: II Peter 3:9 (KJV), “The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.”
Unfortunately, not everyone will repent.
Some of the unrepentant may go around prophesying in God’s name.
Everlasting Father, I do not want to find joy in unrighteousness, but in You. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.
Christ knows all the hearts that repent—He sees mine!