February 21, 2009
Early this morning before dawn I awoke with this question pounding throughout every fiber of my being…Do you know me? Do you know me? Do you know me? I confess that this has been my cry recently to KNOW him. It isn’t enough to know ABOUT him anymore…I must KNOW Him deeper and more intimately than I ever have.
There is such an urgency within me that comes with this question. Do others know him? Or do they know about him? I think of the narrow gate in Matthew 7:13 Jesus is speaking and he says, “Go in through the narrow gate; for the gate that leads to destruction is wide and the road broad, and many travel it; but it is a narrow gate and a hard road that leads to life and only a few find it.”(CJBV)
Further down in Matthew 7:21-23 Jesus says this, “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord!’ will enter the Kingdom of Heaven, only those who do what my Father in heaven wants. On that Day, many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord!’ Didn’t we prophesy in your name? Didn’t we expel demons in your name? Didn’t we perform many miracles in your name?
Verse 23… “Then I will tell them to their faces, ‘I never KNEW you! Get away from me, you workers of lawlessness!’(Complete Jewish Bible version).
Jesus is speaking to people who say they have done all these things in his name, they appear to believe in him and serve him, and his name is on their lips but where are their hearts? (Isaiah 29:13)
What hope do I have if only few make it through the gate? Where is the gate? In John 10:1-15 Jesus is speaking again and he is teaching the people about a sheep pen and how the shepherd is the one who the sheep KNOW his voice and they follow him.
The people aren’t getting what he is saying to them so he speaks more directly saying in verses 7 “Yes, indeed! I tell you that I AM THE GATE for the sheep…”
Again in verse 9 Jesus says to them plainly… “I AM THE GATE if someone enters through me, he will be safe and will go in and out and find pasture…I have come so that they may have life, life in its fullest measure.”
How do I enter through Jesus, the Messiah, the Gate so I will be safe? Romans 10:9-10 (NIV) says, “That if you confess with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved.”
It goes on to say in the next verse…”As the Scriptures says, “Anyone who trusts in him will never be put to shame.” (Also in Isaiah 28:16) So then all I have to do is confess with my mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in my heart that God raised him from the dead and I will be saved then I can go on living like I want to…great!…but wait a minute…
When I read from the Jewish Bible it says this… “that if you acknowledge publicly with your mouth that Yeshua (Jesus) is Lord and trust in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be delivered.
For with the heart one goes on trusting and thus continues toward righteousness, while with the mouth one keeps on making public acknowledgement and thus continues toward deliverance.”
Going on to verse 11 it finishes this thought saying… “For the passage quoted says that everyone who rests his trust on him will not be humiliated.”
This would indicate that believing in Jesus is a continual process towards righteousness and deliverance and not just a “set it and forget it” approach.
Coming to Christ and knowing him is a commitment, a new and full life; it is a hard road and something not to be taken lightly.
This life will last a short time and we will stand before God when it is finished. I don’t want to hear the words above directed at me on that day.
When the scripture talks about “trusting in him and not being humiliated or not being put to shame” it is not talking about in front of man but rather in front of God where it really matters!
Father, I pray for myself, that I would come to know you in a deeper, more intimate way. I confess with my mouth that your are Lord and I believe in my heart that you, Jesus, died for me and you were raised from the dead.
I give thanks to you that you will never leave me or forsake me. Thank you that you are the Good Shepherd; help me to know your voice and follow you and you alone. Amen.
February 21, 2009