If you had given your only son to suffer incredibly at the hands of evil people, then watch them nail him to a cross to die a horrible death, would you not require the maximum of them to be able to join him in a future life? Would you not require that they love and obey him in every way? God does. HE tells us that if we would join in spiritual union with His Son, if we would be His brethren, His friends for whom He suffered and died, then the last hint, the last shadow of sin must be ripped from our lives and replaced with the Holy Spirit. So demanding is God relative to meeting His salvation standards that even in His church–the Kingdom of Heaven–there are those who will not be allowed to join Him at the end of this age. We know this from numerous sources found in His Holy Scriptures. One such source is found in Matthew chapters 24 and 25.
Before we go to this most important segment of God’s Word, I want to remind those who know and inform those who do not know about Satan’s false religious means by which he deceives men into believing that they have been saved, reborn and have become part of the Body of Christ. I have warned about this globally-accepted ruse many times. But please bear with me while I once again warn those who continue to wallow in the religious swill of Catholicism/Protestantism. Note what God says about HIS end-time church–the Kingdom of Heaven–in Revelation 3:14-18. In 2 Peter 2:22 He compares their religion to a sow’s mire and a dog’s vomit. He also says of that Satan-controlled religious entity that comprises the Laodicean era of the church: “I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish that you were either cold or hot. So then, because you are lukewarm and neither cold nor hot, I will spew you out of My mouth. Because you say, ‘I am rich and increased with goods and have everything I need,’ (you) do not know that you are wretched and miserable and poor and blind and naked ….” (Rev. 3:14-18). God goes on to tell those (in His mouth–church) who have turned away from Him to turn from their wicked ways and embrace Him. NOTE THAT GOD IS SPEAKING TO HIS LATTER DAY CHURCH. Consider this, if He is saying these things to some of those in HIS church–the Kingdom of Heaven (His Elect)–what must be His opinion of those who practice Catholicism/Protestantism? He is saying to the Laodiceans in HIS end-time church, “Come out of her and be separate; touch not that unclean thing …. and (then) I will receive you and I will be your God and you will be My people” (2 Cor. 6:17,18). In verses 14-16 He explains exactly why one must reject Satan’s substitute church in order to become part of the true Kingdom of Heaven–the Kingdom of God in embryo. Just as a fertilized egg in a woman’s womb must grow and mature until the time of birth, the babe in Christ must also grow and mature until being born again and saved upon the arrival of Jesus Christ at the end of the age. The Lord tells us how to do this in such passages as 1 John 2:6–we must walk as Jesus walked, and 1 John 3:3–we must be pure as Jesus is pure, and Revelation 3:21–we must overcome Satan as He overcame him. This will place us in the Kingdom of Heaven where He has provided apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers who will bring true believers to the status of a “perfect man” who manifests “the fullness of the measure of the stature of Christ” (Eph. 4:11-13). Note that the Apostle Paul offers no alternative to this standard. There is only one standard–Jesus Christ. We must meet THAT standard while in the Kingdom of Heaven in order to join Him in the Kingdom of God. Sadly, only a few will do so (Mat. 7:13,14). Let us not settle for ourselves anything less than the Ephesians 4:11-13 man. The reward will be worth the effort. L.J.