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“I Never Knew You” December 12, 2006

Posted by Joe in Scripture Meditation.
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Lar,

I’ve been doing some thinking as of late about those words. Can you imagine spending your life doing what you believe to be the work of the Lord only to meet Jesus and hear Him say to you, “I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness”? Think of the moment. Think of a person’s whole life being shattered, all one’s foundational convictions being exposed as a facade. It is a dreadful thought. What strikes me most when thinking of such verses, however, is how few religious Americans actually take the time to think that Jesus might be warning them.

Of course, I understand the deceptiveness of the human heart. Who wants to believe that they are the religious ones who will one day be rejected? So we manage to glide on by such texts (or maybe we just don’t read them at all). Or maybe we are just doing what many of our leaders tell us to do: “Be a good person. Serve others. Be involved in the church…Do, do, do.” Yet we fail to realize that ‘doing’ apart from ‘knowing’ means little to the Lord. Indeed, one day your religious works might actually count against you, considering you might have spent your life serving God in a way that belittled Him rather than exalted Him. Look at the text…

21″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. 22On 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?’ 23And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.’

Isn’t it the will of God to prophesy in His name and cast out demons in His name and do many mighty works in His name? Well, yes, but that ‘yes’ definitely needs some clarification. For it is not enough to simply do the deeds. The deeds must flow from a knowledge of His Person. Doing apart from knowing isn’t really doing. Those who abide in Jesus bear much fruit, but apart from Him, no one can do anything of any true and lasting worth. That’s what Jesus is pointing to in John 15:5. We need intimacy. We need to know Him more than we need to do things for Him. Of course, this is not to neglect the doing. It is simply to give the doing the significance it needs in the eyes of God.

May the Lord grant us grace upon grace Lar, to grow (and persevere) in the knowledge of His Person. May He grant us grace to seek Him in such a way that our good works prove authentic and lasting in the end. I’ll be praying for you brother and I welcome you doing the same for me. Let us always keep our eyes on the Prize. Let us seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness and trust that all other things will come.

Seeking Him with you,

Joe

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