Not everyone can enter God’s kingdom, so do you know the requirements to enter the kingdom of God? Read now to learn more.
By Zhang Min I saw the Lord Jesus said in the Bible, “Many will say to me in that day Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in your name? and in your name have cast out devils? and in your name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess to them, I never knew you: depart from me, you that work iniquity” (Matthew 7:22-23). Every time I read these verses, I would be puzzled: Since we believed in the Lord, we’ve suffered much and paid the price in preaching the Lord’s gospel. We’ve shepherded the Lord’s flock, taken up the cross and followed the Lord, practiced humbleness, patience and tolerance. Have we not been following the Lord’s will? Is our practice of God’s word wrong? Why did the Lord say that He never knew these people and condemn them as evildoers in the end? What, after all, are the Lord’s intentions? Then one day, I saw the following passages of God’s words, “In the Bible, the Lord Jesus says, ‘Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in your name? and in your name have cast out devils? and in your name done many wonderful works?’ (Matt 7:22). What then does the Lord Jesus say? (‘I never knew you: depart from me, you that work iniquity’ (Matt 7:23).) Why does the Lord Jesus say this? Why have those who heal the sick and cast out devils in the Lord’s name, who travel to preach in the Lord’s name, become evildoers? Who are these evildoers? Are they those who do not believe in God? (No.) Who are they? (They are those who believe in God but do not practice truth.) Correct. They believe in God and follow God. They also expend themselves for God, give things up for God, and perform their duty. However, in performing their duty they are not loyal and do not have testimonies, and their performance of duty has become wickedness. So, the Lord Jesus says, ‘Depart from me, you that work iniquity.’” “What is the standard by which a person’s acts are evaluated as good or evil? It is whether or not you, in your thoughts, expressions, and actions, have the testimony of putting truth into practice and of living out the reality of truth. If you do not have this reality or do not have this living out, then you are without a doubt an evildoer. How does God look on evildoers? Your thoughts and external acts all make God ashamed. They do not testify of God. They do not put Satan to shame or defeat it; instead, in everything they are the mark of making God ashamed. You are not testifying of God, not expending yourself for God, and not fulfilling your responsibility and obligations toward God but instead are acting for yourself. What is the implication of ‘for yourself?’ For Satan. So, in the end God will say, ‘Depart from me, you that work iniquity.’ There is no reward. God does not remember them. In God’s eyes their acts have not been good but have become evil acts. Is this not emptiness?” Through God’s word, I came to know that the standard by which God measures people is different from that of people. People only look at these surface efforts and spending, so they think: Those who know more about the Bible are just the spiritual people; those who can endure sufferings are the ones seeking the truth; those who have sacrificed a lot are people full of love; those who have preached the gospel more and usually help others are people loving the Lord. However, God inspects people’s hearts, and He doesn’t see what people are like on the surface or whether their behavior is good or bad; instead, He only sees whether one’s essence has the reality of obeying Him, and He sees one’s intentions and objectives of doing everything, and one’s motives behind his actions and the consequences of what one has done. Just like the Lord ever said that those who preached and cast out devils in the Lord’s name, and who did many wonderful works in the Lord’s name were not ones doing His will but were evildoers. Why is that? It is because although they serve God and interpret the Bible, their intentions and objectives are to exalt themselves, bear witness to themselves, show off themselves, make others worship and follow them, and bring their brothers and sisters in front of themselves. They usually teach the believers to practice forbearance, patience and love, but they don’t fellowship about God’s will at all. They only let people keep the letters of the Bible and some rules but don’t emphasize practicing God’s words. Thus they are unable to bring people into the presence of God, and instead, they have become blind guides. These people may believe in the Lord’s name, pray to Him, know the Scriptures very well, and serve God in the church, but they have not known Him. When God’s new work comes upon them, they don’t accept it but even seal off the churches, so they have become the Pharisees who resist God. Just as God says: “Man acknowledges only the existence of God, but not that of the truth; man acknowledges only the existence of God, but not that of life; man only acknowledges God’s name, but not His substance.” Therefore, in the end no matter how many years they believe in God and how much work they have done, God doesn’t admit they are ones who truly believe in Him, but condemns them as evildoers. At that moment, I remembered God’s word, “I decide the destination of each person not on the basis of age, seniority, amount of suffering, and least of all, the degree to which they invite pity, but according to whether they possess the truth. There is no other choice but this. You must realize that all those who do not follow the will of God will…
The Lord Jesus said, “Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.” How can we achieve true repentance and be protected by God during the disasters in the last days? This article will show you the way.
We all know that “Heaven” is always referred to as God. The “heavenly kingdom” obviously refers to God’s kingdom.There is no tears or sorrow, much less pain or death, so all Christians pursue and yearn for it. Then, where is it? Maybe some brothers and sisters will answer without any hesitation, “Of course it’s in heaven. The Lord Jesus said, ‘In My Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also’ (John 14:2-3). Since the Lord Jesus promised us that wherever He is He will ask for us to come there and He ascended to heaven after His resurrection, the place that God has prepared for us must be in heaven. So we have been longing for the Lord to return to receive us into God’s kingdom soon.” However, is God’s kingdom really in heaven as we believe it to be? As for this question, let’s see what the Lord Jesus said in the Bible, “Our Father which are in heaven, Hallowed be Your name. Your kingdom come, Your will be done in earth, as it is in heaven” (Matthew 6:9-10). The Lord Jesus clearly told us that God’s kingdom will descend upon earth and that His will shall be done on earth, not merely in heaven. As such, God will obtain His glory on earth. Now let’s turn to Revelation 11:15, “The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of His Christ; and He shall reign for ever and ever.” And Revelation 21:2–3, “And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven…. Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people, and God Himself shall be with them, and be their God.” These passages of scripture mention “The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of His Christ,” “new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven,” “the tabernacle of God is with men.” According to these verses, we can clearly know that God’s kingdom will be built on earth and that the kingdoms of the world will all become Christ’s kingdoms. Thus we will be able to obey and worship God and follow His will on earth. From this we can see that God’s kingdom will be realized on earth and so God won’t take us up into heaven. John 3:13 says, “And no man has ascended up to heaven, but He that came down from heaven, even the Son of man which is in heaven.” The Lord Jesus clearly told us that no one can ascend up to heaven except for the Son of man, for heaven is God’s dwelling place. So how can we mankind deserve to ascend up to heaven? And let’s give it some more thought. If we are really raised up into the air, well, there’s no food and no place to live there, how will we survive? Thus, it is clear that the view that God’s kingdom is in heaven is indeed our conceptions and imagination. As we all know, when God first created man, He made them live on earth, and allowed them to obey, worship and honor Him on earth. And Satan corrupts mankind, also on earth. Moreover, after man sinned, God carries out His work of the salvation of man also on earth. For example: In the Age of Law, Jehovah God used Moses to proclaim His laws and commandments to guide man to live a normal life on earth. Thus mankind could know what kind of people God blesses and what kind of people God curses, and at the same time they could know what is righteous and what is sinful. However, during the later period of the Age of Law, since the human race had become more and more deeply corrupted by Satan, man all lived in sin. They were unable to abide by the laws and faced the danger of being convicted and cursed by these laws. That is why the Lord Jesus became flesh and came to earth to do the work of redemption in the Age of Grace. He served as a sin offering for man, exempting man from the conviction and the curse of the law, so we could be qualified to come before God and pray to Him, and enjoy His abundant grace and truth. The Lord Jesus taught us to be tolerant and patient and to confess our sins and repent, so that we can have the chance to gain God’s salvation and survive on earth. From this we can see that God first created man on earth and that His work in the Age of Law and the Age of Grace was also carried out on earth. Revelation 21:2-3 say, “And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven…. Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people, and God Himself shall be with them, and be their God.” Revelation prophesied that the new Jerusalem shall come down out of heaven. So when the Lord Jesus comes back again, the kingdom of Christ will be realized among man. In other words, the kingdom of God will be established on earth and will last forever. Thus it can be seen that God does the work of the salvation of man on earth all along. About mankind’s future destination that is on earth, God’s words say, “God will return to His original position, and each person will return to his or her respective place. These are the destinations that God and man will respectively reside in after the end of God’s entire management….
Many Christians believe the kingdom of heaven is in heaven, but in the Lord’s Prayer, the Lord clearly tells us to pray for God’s kingdom to come on earth. Then where is the Kingdom of God?
Only those who follow the will of the heavenly Father can enter the heavenly kingdom. Does working hard mean doing the will of the heavenly Father? This involves whether we can be raptured into the kingdom of heaven.
The Lord Jesus promised that when He returns in the last days, He will rapture His believers into the heavenly kingdom. Do you know where the kingdom of God is? What should we do to be raptured into the heavenly kingdom?
Can we enter the heavenly kingdom after being justified by faith? A letter brings you to understand the true meaning of being justified by faith and find the way to enter the heavenly kingdom.
Only those who follow the heavenly Father’s will can enter the kingdom of heaven. How can we follow His will? Does laboring for the Lord mean following His will?
Many people believe the place that the Lord has prepared for us is in heaven. Actually, according to the prophecies of the Bible, it is on earth.
I believe that all true believers in the Lord expect the Lord Jesus to come to take them into the heaven soon. Some firmly believe that they will surely be taken into the kingdom of heaven by the Lord when He returns, if they work hard for Him, shepherd the church believers, and even give up their family and marriage, dedicating their all to Him. In fact, such thought is wrong. Man’s sacrifice, expenditure, hard work do not mean that he is cleansed, because he is possessed of satanic dispositions of arrogance, self-conceit, self-rightness and self-importance and can still resist God. To trace the root, originally when in the heaven, the archangel was the greatest of heaven’s angels and God authorized it to govern millions of angels. After God created mankind on earth, its ambitions were so inflated that it even desired to stand equal to God and rule over mankind on earth. In the end, it was cast into midair by God. As man was corrupted increasingly deeply, his nature became that of the archangel: arrogance and self-conceit, self-rightness and self-importance and having no place for God in his heart as well as no respect for others…. With such corrupt dispositions, man can contend with and fight against God at any time. When he first believes in God, he produces conceptions about God when seeing God’s work conflicts with his will, and even talks about and judges the Lord Jesus and His work carelessly. After he does services for a period of time, he can often testify how much work he does or how much he suffers, even regarding himself a holy man and one that pleases God because he can expound on the Bible, support the believers, work and preach for the Lord. And in the end, he thinks that he has finished his course and cast away what he should, thus he asks God for the glorious crown and a place for him in the kingdom of heaven just like Paul. … The more work one has done, the more easily he thinks highly of himself, feeling that he has the capital. As a result, he becomes more arrogant, self-right and unreasonable. The Jewish Pharisees are typical examples. They served Jehovah God in the temple for generation after generation. Considering themselves to be well versed in the law, they frequently interpreted the law amongst the Jewish people, and thus often sat in the first place of the synagogue to receive people’s respect and worship. When the Lord Jesus came to do His redemptive work, their arrogant and self-right nature was completely exposed. They did not know God’s work, and used their brain and religious knowledge and theory to resist the Lord and His work. They thought that the One to come should be called Messiah rather than Jesus, and should be born in the royal palace or a noble family rather than in a poor carpenter’s. Therefore, they regarded the Lord Jesus as a man instead of God and thus spared no effort to condemn and slander Him. Even though they listened to the Lord’s preaching, they didn’t mean to seek the truth, but just tried to find a handle to hand Him over to the Roman government for condemnation. At last, they incited and deceived the Jewish people to nail the Lord Jesus onto the cross. When the Lord Jesus did His work, the Pharisees not only refused to seek His work themselves, but deceived and controlled the Jewish people and forbad them to convert to Him, fighting against God for His chosen people as well as status. Therefore, the Lord Jesus cursed them, “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for you compass sea and land to make one proselyte, and when he is made, you make him twofold more the child of hell than yourselves” (Matthew 23:15) “But woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for you shut up the kingdom of heaven against men: for you neither go in yourselves, neither suffer you them that are entering to go in” (Matthew 23:13). The Pharisees’ evil deeds of condemning and resisting the Lord Jesus, deceiving and controlling people reveal their devilish substance of antichrists thoroughly. Eventually, they paid the due price for their maleficence and were subjected to destruction of their nation. We can see that if man does not get rid of the corrupt dispositions of arrogance, self-rightness, self-importance and conceit, they will never be able to be purified, much less will they be approved into the kingdom of heaven by the Lord even if they work hard and spend for the Lord all his life. In Leviticus 11:45, Jehovah God says, “you shall therefore be holy, for I am holy.” As God is holy, if the Lord receives man with satanic dispositions to His place, will He still be a God of holiness? It is also said in Hebrews 12:14, “without which no man shall see the Lord.” The Bible says that man can see the Lord Jesus only if he is cleansed. It doesn’t say that all those who can spend and throw things out for the Lord will see Him. Therefore, to be purified is the target that man should pursue in believing in the Lord. Only when man gets purified by God, no longer lives by his satanic dispositions of arrogance, conceit, self-rightness, self-importance, and can truly do God’s will in everything, can he receive God’s approval and be fit for the kingdom of God.
Question 4: All of us have believed in the Lord for many years, and have always followed the example of Paul in our work for the Lord. We have been faithful to the name and way of the Lord, and the crown of righteousness surely awaits us. Today, we need only focus on working hard for the Lord, and watching for His return. Only thus, can we be taken into the kingdom of heaven. Because it is said in the Bible, “for they shall not be ashamed that wait for me” (Isaiah 49:23). We believe the Lord’s promise: He will take us into the kingdom of heaven at His return. Could there really be anything wrong with practicing in this way? Answer: In watching for the arrival of the Lord, most people believe that they need only work hard for the Lord, and follow the example of Paul, thus can be directly taken into the kingdom of heaven when the Lord arrives. They think it is quite right to practice in this way, and no one disagrees. Yet we who believe in God should seek the truth in all things. Though practicing in that way is in keeping with people’s conceptions, is it in keeping with God’s wishes? I think we should know: God’s words are the principles of man’s actions, they are the standard by which all people, things, and matters are measured. If people practice according to the words of God, they will surely receive God’s approval. If they go against the words of God, and practice according to their own conceptions and imaginings, then they will surely be detested and rejected by God. As to whether or not people can be directly taken into the kingdom of heaven by watching and waiting and working hard for the Lord, let us look at what the Lord Jesus said in Matthew, “Not every one that said to me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that does the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in your name? and in your name have cast out devils? and in your name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess to them, I never knew you: depart from me, you that work iniquity” (Matthew 7:21-23). In the words of the Lord Jesus we see that the Lord Jesus only said “but he that does the will of my Father which is in heaven.” He did not say that all those who are faithful to the Lord Jesus’ name and work hard for the Lord will be rewarded, and enter into the kingdom of heaven. Is this not fact? If, as in people’s conceptions, all those who keep the Lord’s name and work hard for Him will enter into the kingdom of heaven, why did the Lord Jesus say that those who preached and cast out devils in the Lord’s name committed evil? This shows that working hard for the Lord is not necessarily the same as doing the will of God. Many people work hard for the Lord so that they might be blessed, and not for truly obeying God. Their satanic disposition is still there. They still have conceptions about God, and still disobey, oppose, and condemn Him. Some even hate the truth, like the Pharisees. No matter how hard they work for the Lord, how could such people do the will of God? Such people oppose God in nature. To enter into the kingdom of heaven simply by working hard for the Lord, this is intolerable to Heaven! Don’t you agree? So how do we do God’s will? Doing God’s will means that people obey the work of God, view putting God’s word into practice as above all else, and obeying God as above all else. Thus, they can abide by God’s commandments, perform their duty as required by God, and truly dedicate themselves to God, without thought of what they might gain in return. All they do is to put the truth into practice and to obey God. Only then are they doing God’s will. We have seen many people though they work hard for the Lord and make great sacrifices, they do so to be rewarded, and enter the kingdom of heaven to enjoy rich blessings. It is not to love God and obey Him. Such devotion to God is nothing more than making a deal with Him. Despite working hard for God, many people have never put the truth into practice, nor do they exalt or testify to God. Instead, they often make an idol of themselves, and make others worship and follow them. Everything they do is to maintain their own position and income. Are such people those who put God’s words into practice and obey God? Are they those who do the will of God? Such people serve God yet oppose Him, they are the hypocritical Pharisees. It can be said that they are evildoers. How could people like this be qualified to enter into the kingdom of heaven? From this we see that those who work hard on the surface for the Lord, but have never put the truth into practice, are not exalting and testifying to God for loving Him and carrying out His will. Can such people do the will of God? Those who work hard for the Lord in order to receive His blessings and enter the kingdom of heaven, but have no change in their life disposition and still oppose God are the ones like the Pharisees, pretending to be good and will be cursed by God the Lord! Almighty God says, “I decide the destination of each man not on the basis of age, seniority, amount of suffering, or least of all, the degree of misery, but on whether they possess truth. There is no other choice but this. You must realize that all those who do not follow the will of God will be punished. This is an immutable…