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Summary

  • The parables of Matthew 25 are very clear about the Final Judgment of mankind. Neither mentions the word “faith”, or “believe”.
  • John 3:16 must mean something more than many (most?) are being taught.
  • Paul encourages us to judge ourselves; Peter, that we would make our call and election sure.
  • Is it wise to presume about any of the qualifications found in these parables?

In a previous article, The Sky is Falling!! Again?, we proposed that – in speaking about the signs of His coming and the end of the Age, Jesus strongly encouraged His disciples (including us) to avoid deception, endure to the end, resist being troubled; and, above all, be prepared.

Continuing His discourse, Jesus explains what that preparation looks like. He also highlights the rewards for preparing; and the consequences of failing to do so. With that in mind, take all the time you need to read Matthew 25… prayerfully and carefully. Then, please prayerfully consider the following.

The parables of Matthew 25 are very clear about the Final Judgment of mankind. If you have enough oil you will get in to Heaven. If you properly invest the talent that has been entrusted to you, you will get in. If you feed, clothe, etc. the brethren of Jesus Christ, you will get in.

If you fail at these, you will be shut out, cast into outer darkness (where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth), and cursed to the everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels. In simpler terms: You will go to Hell.

I know this is challenging to many. Jesus said – right there in John 3:16 – that God so loved the world, He gave His only begotten Son; that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have everlasting life. Nothing there about bringing enough oil to the party, being a wise investor, or ministering to the brethren.

At this point we must ask ourselves a few questions: What does believing in Jesus mean? Does it include the requirements of Matthew 25? Is what we know as “faith” enough for salvation; without oil, or return on invested talent, or ministry to the brethren? Is faith without works dead (i.e., ineffectual for our salvation)? How will our faith be judged? Read the rest of this entry »

And Jesus said to them, “Do you not see all these things? Assuredly, I say to you, not one stone shall be left here upon another, that shall not be thrown down.” Now as He sat on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to Him privately, saying, “Tell us, when will these things be? And what will be the sign of Your coming, and of the end of the age?” Matthew 24:2-3

In response to Jesus’ declaration that the Temple would be destroyed, His disciples asked three questions:

  1. When will this happen?
  2. What will be the sign of Your coming?
  3. What will be the sign of the end of the age?

Jesus could have answered the first of these questions directly (i.e., in about 40 years). He chose not to. Well, actually, His Father chose not to.

But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, but My Father only. Matthew 24:36

Furthermore, notice that the disciples did not ask “when” in regard to His coming, nor the end of the age. Somehow, they knew better.

So, why has this become our focus?

Is the time and energy we spend trying to determine the day and hour a distraction from more important matters? I believe it is.  In fact, Jesus has promised that the day and hour we come to expect will not be accurate.

Therefore you also be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect. Matthew 24:44

Jesus could have quickly, and succinctly, answered all three of the disciple’s questions. Instead, He used their questions to raise more important matters. There was something much more important that He wanted them (and us) to understand, believe and obey.

And Jesus answered and said to them: “Take heed that no one deceives you.” Matthew 24:4

But he who endures to the end shall be saved. Matthew 24:13

Watch therefore, for you do not know what hour
your Lord is coming.
Matthew 24:42

Take heed, endure and watch; for though you do not know the day or the hour, tribulation – and then judgment – is coming.

The primary purpose of this discourse is the disciple’s preparation. God help us to discover the same passion for those in our spheres of influence.

Humbly yours and forever His,

Rob

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