“Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves. You will know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes from thorn bushes or figs from thistles? Even so, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Therefore by their fruits you will know them. 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. 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? And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!” (NKJV)
Differing versions say:
-“…you who break God’s laws” (NLT)
-“…all you did was make yourself important.” (Message)
-“…you evil doers.” (NOA)
What is God’s will and are we doing it?
As followers of Jesus our job is to point people to Jesus. Plain and simple. Our actions, our words, our efforts should all be a part God’s plan to reconcile people to Him, as we shower them with the love of Jesus and truth of the Gospel.
Are we bringing people closer to Jesus, or are we pushing them away from Him?
Evaluate your relationships, your efforts, your church and its efforts. Is your church repelling unbelievers or bringing them in? Does you leadership understand its purpose, to grow the Kingdom? Do you know that’s the purpose you were created for? A relationship with Jesus and pointing others to Him?
The Pharisees, whom Jesus was addressing in this passage, were like a tree that was bearing bad fruit. You might want to pick something to eat, but their fruit was all rotten and stinking. Now who eats rotting fruit? No one, because it’s good for nothing.
Their evil was stinking up to the heavens, they looked so good to all the people but in reality they pushed people away from God.
With all this in mind, what are you doing to help your friends grow closer to Christ? What are you doing to help your family see Jesus clearer? What are you doing to share Jesus with your community, your world? Let it be said of you one day when you stand before God, that your fruit was a fragrance He smelled sweetly. Let your life be poured out for His glory!
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