Which god? God or god?
“Thou shalt have no other god before me.” (Exodus 20:3 KJV)
February 9, 2011
I never knew you
This is one of the scariest sentences in the Bible.
Really? Is that possible? Can the same sentence be both scary and loving?
Where does this sentence come from anyway?
It's in italic red letters -
A Tree and Its Fruit
Mt 7:15 “Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves. By their fruit you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles? Likewise every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Thus, by their fruit you will recognize them.
Mt 7:21 “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?’ Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’
As Matthew relates what Jesus taught in the Sermon on the Mount -
This particular warning has to do with false prophets -
Those who intentionally do this -
The Greatest in the Kingdom of Heaven
Mt 18:1 At that time the disciples came to Jesus and asked, “Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?”
Mt 18:2 He called a little child and had him stand among them. And he said: “I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore, whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.
Mt 18:5 “And whoever welcomes a little child like this in my name welcomes me. But if anyone causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him to have a large millstone hung around his neck and to be drowned in the depths of the sea.
Mt 18:7 “Woe to the world because of the things that cause people to sin! Such things must come, but woe to the man through whom they come! If your hand or your foot causes you to sin cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to enter life maimed or crippled than to have two hands or two feet and be thrown into eternal fire. And if your eye causes you to sin, gouge it out and throw it away. It is better for you to enter life with one eye than to have two eyes and be thrown into the fire of hell.
But that's not who Jesus is talking to so much in A Tree and Its Fruit.
I never knew you.
Can you imagine anything worse?
What if you thought you were following someone's teachings -
Both of the quotes from Jesus above point to this exact thing happening. It's part of what comes with having free will. We have the choice to follow Jesus -
So the scary part of what Jesus says in I never knew you is what happens if we follow the false teachings until the day we die -
The loving part in I never knew you comes in the early verses in that section.
Jesus doesn't give us warnings without also giving us a way to avoid the bad things that come if we don't pay attention to the warnings.
The obvious part of what Jesus says -
The not so obvious part -
It's not always easy -
For instance -
This particular one is called The Qu'ran and The Bible. It sounded interesting to me. The description talked about the struggle between right and wrong -
There are some preview pages available to see before downloading the app, so I looked at them. The very first sentence in the Preface starts off with -
Infinite praise be to Allah who is the Lord of all universes and gratitude to Prophet Muhammed...
Many people will try to tell us that Islam is a great religion.
Many people will try to tell us that like Christians and Jews -
Many people will tell us that Muslims believe in Jesus.
The problem is -
For a quick summary of what Islam teaches about Jesus, see my previous article -
And it's not just Islam that does this.
Even some religions that claim to be Christian teach things that are most un-
Jesus is warning us in Matthew 7:15-
And Jesus is telling us that if our "god" is not God -
Another thing we have to be very careful of is the difference between what we want Jesus to have said -
Many would like to believe that because Jesus loves everyone -
Obviously, from these same verses -
Jesus does love all of us. In fact -
Just to give a couple examples of this type of false belief -
It's a very emotional issue -
Some would like to believe that it's possible to legislate -
How can we get around the 6th commandment -
Do we really think that we decide to pick and choose which acts constitute murder?
If we go back to the original Hebrew word -
While Hebrew possesses seven words for killing, the word used here (rasah; GK H8357) appears only forty-
God gives us free will. He gives us the choice to interpret this as we choose. He gives us the choice to have an abortion or not.
What He doesn't give us a choice on -
Having said all this -
Mt 12:30 “He who is not with me is against me, and he who does not gather with me scatters. And so I tell you, every sin and blasphemy will be forgiven men, but the blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven. Anyone who speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven, but anyone who speaks against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven, either in this age or in the age to come.
But if you or a friend or a loved one are considering it -
Another example of wishful thinking that I want to bring up relates to all the stuff on LGBT and whatever else is included in the list these days.
Homosexual behavior has always been against God's will. The entire chapter 18 of Leviticus is on unlawful sexual relations. It includes -
Lev 18:22 “ ‘Do not lie with a man as one lies with a woman; that is detestable.
and concludes with -
Lev 18:29 “ ‘Everyone who does any of these detestable things—such persons must be cut off from their people. Keep my requirements and do not follow any of the detestable customs that were practiced before you came and do not defile yourselves with them. I am the LORD your God.’ ”
We can legislate all we want -
If you are attending a church that says it is OK -
Don't put yourself in a position of having Jesus say I never knew you.
At the end of my life, I want to hear something more like Jesus' words in Luke 23:43 -
“I tell you the truth, today you will be with me in paradise.”