Matthew 7:21-23 NKJV: “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. (22) Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ (23) And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’
Here, the Lord Jesus reveals to us that not every Christian will experience entering the Kingdom: the TOTAL dominion of righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit (Rom. 14.17) over our souls: wills, minds and emotions; and bodies. Even if they experience manifestations of the gifts of the Spirit: prophecy, discernings of spirits and workings of miracles, but practice iniquity: lawlessness; they will NOT enter the Kingdom (Act. 14.22) in this 3rd day.
What is lawlessness? To answer this, we must know what the law is.
What is God’s law for the New Testament Christian?
1 John 3:22-23 NKJV: And whatever we ask we receive from Him, because we keep His commandments and do those things that are pleasing in His sight. (23) And this is His commandment: that we should believe on the name of His Son Jesus Christ and love one another, as He gave us commandment.
John 13:34 NKJV: A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another.
John 20:31 NKJV: but these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you may have life in His name.
Romans 8:2 NKJV: For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death.
God’s law is the law of life and love by the power of the Holy Spirit; this law is practiced by power of the Holy Spirit released from the heart, through the mouth and physical actions or deeds.
Deuteronomy 30:14 NKJV: But the word is very near you, in your mouth and in your heart, that you may do it.
Iniquity is disobedience to this law: either by omission or commission of acts contrary to the law of love: like lying, stealing, adultery etc.
Disobedience by omission is passive iniquity.
Disobedience by commission of acts in violation of God’s moral law is active iniquity.
So practicing iniquity, either passively (by negligence of keeping the spiritual laws of life and love by the power of the Holy Spirit) or actively by deeds that contravene God’s moral law: doing to others what you want them to do to you (Matt. 7.12) will stop you from entering the Kingdom.
Observe that you can be in the Kingdom, but NOT inherit the Kingdom: the perfection and fulness of Christ. You, like Lot (Gen.19) can be saved so as by fire but suffer the loss of inheriting the kingdom.
1 Corinthians 3:15 NKJV: If anyone’s work is burned, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire.
Furthermore, practice of iniquity: passive or active will cause our love to God to wax cold; all cold and lukewarm Christians will be thrown out of the God’s mouth:
Matthew 24:12 NKJV: And because lawlessness will abound, the love of many will grow cold.
Revelation 3:15-16 NKJV: “I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot. I could wish you were cold or hot. (16) So then, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will vomit you out of My mouth.
In our article next week, we will see how in more detail to actively practice the law of life and love by the power of the Holy Spirit.