November 03, 2020 – Tuesday
Matthew 25:31-33 NIV
31 “When the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the angels with Him, He will sit on His glorious throne.
32 All the nations will be gathered before Him, and He will separate the people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats.
33 He will put the sheep on His right and the goats on His left.
In these last 15 verses of the Olivet Discourse, Jesus describes His return for judgment. This is the day when we would most want to be judged worthy of the kingdom of heaven. Jesus makes clear whom He will find worthy. That is when 34 “the King will say to those on His right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. 35 For I was hungry and you gave Me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave Me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited Me in, 36 I needed clothes and you clothed Me, I was sick and you looked after Me, I was in prison and you came to visit Me.’
Notice He was not addressing the righteous, for they queried Him in the next three verses, 37 ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38 When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? 39 When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’
They knew the answer but did not want to hear it, for it had first been communicated to Saul on his trip to Damascus. In Acts 9 we read, 3 As he neared Damascus on his journey, suddenly a light from heaven flashed around him. 4 He fell to the ground and heard a voice say to him, “Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me?” 5 “Who are you, Lord?” Saul asked. “I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting,” He replied. Saul had been persecuting the body of Christ – His church. To persecute His church was to persecute Christ Himself. He is saying the same thing at the conclusion of the Olivet Discourse; if you fed the members of My body, then you fed me, the same if you gave members of My body drink when thirsty, then you gave Me drink when I was thirsty. Likewise when a member of His body was a stranger and you invited Him in – you did it for Jesus. The same true when you clothed members of His body – you clothed Him. When members of His body were sick and you looked after them, you looked after Him. Finally, when members of His body were in prison and you came to visit them, you came to visit Him.
Here Jesus is making it explicitly clear, we will be judged on how we did or did not take care of our brothers and sisters in Christ. Our salvation is not based upon such works, but the fruit of our salvation will say much about whether or not we did accept Christ as our Lord and Savior or if we just played a ‘righteous’ role. Their actions (or rather inactions) towards members of the body of Christ reveal their mindset and soul set as they argue, not understanding what He has told them, 44 “They also will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison, and did not help you?’ His answer is final, 45 “He will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.’ 46 “Then they will go away to eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life.”
So, the question arises, what have I been doing for the least of my brothers and sisters in Christ. Not to earn my salvation, but as fruit of my salvation. Perhaps the question arises for you as well.