[The Golden Rule] “So whatever you wish that others would do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets. Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few.
The gate is narrow because Jesus is the only way of salvation. The Old Testament uses the word “way” to describe a person’s life and how they live it.
[A Tree and Its Fruit] “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves. You will recognize them by their fruits. Are grapes gathered from thornbushes, or figs from thistles? So, every healthy tree bears good fruit, but the diseased tree bears bad fruit. A healthy tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a diseased tree bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Thus you will recognize them by their fruits.
In Matthew 3 John the Baptist says the same thing to the Pharisees. He is telling them that repentance of our known sins is necessary in our union with Jesus.
C.S. Lewis calls Jesus the “Perfect Penitent” which means that Jesus, a perfect man, was the only one who could repent perfectly. (Penal Substitutionary Atonement)
By one offering he has perfected for all time those who are being sanctified (Heb 10:14). Christians are already perfected, but not yet perfect.
Sanctification is Jesus making us holy, not us trying to live a better life, but Christ living in us.
How did Jesus do this? He is fully God, and He died on a cross taking God’s wrath for our sin and giving us His righteousness and the reward for perfection, heaven.
This means that He is not a separate God or opposed to the God of the Old Testament. He was perfect as a man. Fulfilling Psalm 1 as the man who loved God’s law.
So can you get to Jesus by your good works? Let Jesus answer here.
[I Never Knew You] “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?’ And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.’
So what should we do?
[Build Your House on the Rock] “Everyone then who hears these words of mine and does them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house, but it did not fall, because it had been founded on the rock. And everyone who hears these words of mine and does not do them will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell, and great was the fall of it.”
Trust Jesus. He is the exact imprint of the God of the O.T., loving and full of righteous anger. Jesus’ Word is the O.T. (the Law and the Prophets), which is summed up in this phrase: Love God, Love people.
[The Authority of Jesus] And when Jesus finished these sayings, the crowds were astonished at his teaching, for he was teaching them as one who had authority, and not as their scribes
(Matthew 7:12-29 ESV)