We’re told by Jesus in Matthew 6:33 that if we seek FIRST the Kingdom of God, He will provide everything that we NEED. That’s “Jehovah Jirah” — “The God who Provides”. Everything that we own, we have it because God let us have it. But that’s a lesson on stewardship and I’m not going there today.
Besides our “daily bread” or needs, we also long for or “thirst” for a relationship with Jesus. That’s why He died on the cross. He didn’t suffer and die on the cross so that we could have religion! He wants a relationships with each and every one of us — personally!
3 Things Jesus Requires of Us to Enter the Kingdom of God
Jesus told parable after parable that started with “The Kingdom of God is like…” or “The Kingdom of Heaven is like…” and then he told a story. Many of the people who heard them didn’t get it. Especially the Pharisees. They were blinded by pride and arrogance.
3 – Become like little kids — lowly and humble
Jesus and the Children…
13 One day some parents brought their children to Jesus so he could touch and bless them. But the disciples scolded the parents for bothering him.
14 When Jesus saw what was happening, he was angry with his disciples. He said to them, “Let the children come to me. Don’t stop them! For the Kingdom of God belongs to those who are like these children. 15 I tell you the truth, anyone who doesn’t receive the Kingdom of God like a child will never enter it.” 16 Then he took the children in his arms and placed his hands on their heads and blessed them.Mark 10:13-16 NLT
2 – Through Jesus
“I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me.”John 14:6 NLT
1 – You MUST be BORN AGAIN!
There was one Pharisee, however, Nicodemus, who wasn’t totally blinded by pride. His story is told in John 3. He did come to Jesus at night when no one would see him. The most important line and the number one thing that you have to do is be BORN AGAIN…
After dark one evening, he came to speak with Jesus. “Rabbi,” he said, “we all know that God has sent you to teach us. Your miraculous signs are evidence that God is with you.”
3 Jesus replied, “I tell you the truth, unless you are born again, you cannot see the Kingdom of God.”
4 “What do you mean?” exclaimed Nicodemus. “How can an old man go back into his mother’s womb and be born again?”
5 Jesus replied, “I assure you, no one can enter the Kingdom of God without being born of water and the Spirit. 6 Humans can reproduce only human life, but the Holy Spirit gives birth to spiritual life. 7 So don’t be surprised when I say, ‘You must be born again.’”John 3:2-7 NLT
There you have it! Pretty simple, huh?
Don’t be like the Pharisees!
Jesus told us….
“But I warn you—unless your righteousness is better than the righteousness of the teachers of religious law and the Pharisees, you will never enter the Kingdom of Heaven!”Matthew 5:20 NLT
“What sorrow awaits you teachers of religious law and you Pharisees. Hypocrites! For you shut the door of the Kingdom of Heaven in people’s faces. You won’t go in yourselves, and you don’t let others enter either.”Matthew 23:13 NLT
In Matthew 23, Jesus really lays it on the Pharisees and Sadducees. However, in verse 13, that’s a huge accusation. Jesus said basically that what the “teachers of religious law” taught the congregants was not the truth. Simply because they didn’t get it. They wouldn’t accept Jesus as the Jewish Messiah — the ONLY way into the Kingdom of God.
They were so accustomed to the religious rites and rituals — not just the ones that Moses taught, but ones they invented and added themselves — that they could not accept what Jesus was telling them. They saw Jesus as threat to their power and authority. Hence, they crucified Him.
Jesus told His disciples after the Resurrection…
“I have been given all authority in heaven and on earth.”Matthew 28:18 NLT
Could it be any plainer? “In heaven and on earth”! No human, no church, no priest, no pope has more authority than Jesus in heaven and on earth. That is the Gospel Truth!
So, let’s recap! To get into the Kingdom of God you must…
- Humble yourself like a little child.
- Go THROUGH Jesus — not a priest, not a church, no one else.
- Be BORN AGAIN — Die to your old life and be raised to a new life in the Kingdom with Jesus as your friend, redeemer, savior, Lord and King.
Simply invite Jesus into your heart. If you don’t know what to say, here’s a prayer that you can read out loud or silently. But you must do it humbly — like a little child — and with your whole heart — like you really mean it…
“Dear Lord Jesus, I know I am a sinner. I believe You died for my sins. Please forgive me. Right now, I turn from my sins and open the door of my heart and my life to you. I confess You as my personal Lord and Savior. I will follow you for the rest of my life. Thank You, Jesus, for saving me. In Jesus’ name, Amen.”
Next Steps in Your New Walk with Jesus…
- Start reading the Bible daily. If you don’t have one, I recommend the YouVersion, Bible.app and Through the Word app — both are free and have a lot of great daily devotionals and Bible studies.
- Pray every day. Talk to God. Ask the Holy Spirit to guide you daily.
- Find and join a Bible-believing church — preferably a non-denominational one and be baptized!
“And the Good News about the Kingdom will be preached throughout the whole world, so that all nations will hear it; and then the end will come.”Matthew 24:14 NLT
Soli Deo Gloria — To God Alone Be the Glory!