Will You Be in Paradise with Jesus?
September 03, 2000
MAY THE WORDS OF MY MOUTH ... AND THE MEDITATIONS OF ALL
OUR HEARTS ... BE ALWAYS ACCEPTABLE TO YOU --- OUR STRENGTH AND
OUR REDEEMER AMEN
"Lord who may dwell in your tabernacle? Who may enter your kingdom?" .. The language changed a little with Jesus but the essential question never changed. Who may be with God? Who will be granted the blessing of being with God?
"Whoever leads a blameless life and does what is right .. who speaks truth from their heart. There is no guile upon their tongue; they do no evil to a friend, they do not heap contempt upon neighbors." .. etc. ... If these rules are right, will I see you in paradise? In the kingdom? ... If so, I will be seeing you from a long distance away!! Because I won't make it in!!
Last week we heard the disciples tell Jesus that the teaching about His body and His blood was a hard saying .. They asked: Who could accept it? ... Those teachings were easy compared with this one!
But notice something fascinating about the psalm --- it makes the same point Jesus makes in the Gospel. The psalm said nothing about following legalistic rituals. The psalm speaks about motivations, intentions. The issue is not rules, but relationships. Jesus said it is what comes from within us that can save - support, or defile us.
Paul approaches a similar thought from a different direction. In essence, Paul is telling us to expect other forces in the world to attack us .. evil forces which probably operate through the actions and attitudes of other people. Expect there to be temptations and even opposition if we try to follow Jesus.
There is a school of thought ... somewhat extreme but I think it says something important ... a school of thought that says if a person is not upsetting other people than they are not living as a Christian. That does not give us justification simply ...
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