Then Jesus told his disciples, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it. For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what shall a man give in return for his soul? For the Son of Man is going to come with his angels in the glory of his Father, and then he will repay each person according to what he has done. Truly, I say to you, there are some standing here who will not taste death until they see the Son of Man coming in his kingdom.” – Matthew 16:24-28 ESV
Such a powerful word for an important time. Notice the individuality of God’s instruction and God’s mentioned consequences. This is NOT a corporate judgement, or a GROUP command, this is an individualistic message. IF ANYONE- not any family, not any group of people, not any church or ‘get-together- BUT, if anyONE…for WHOever..what will it profit A MAN…to repay each PERSON according to what HE HAS DONE- or NOT DONE! This is a ONE ON ONE agreement, there is no EN-MASS. En masse means, in a mass; all together; as a group. In Jesus’ most famous sermon, on the mountain, He describes how individualistic this relationship is. “You can enter God’s Kingdom only through the narrow gate. The highway to hell is broad, and its gate is wide for the many who choose that way. But the gateway to life is very narrow and the road is difficult, and only a few ever find it. (Matthew 7:13-14)
Leader, I have heard researchers of the original text talk about how the original language alluded to a “turnstile”. How many people get through a turnstile at one time- ONE! When I flew into London’s Heathrow airport we had to take our luggage and carry it through an underground train system called the TUBE, and it was impossible to take our luggage through the turnstiles we had to go through to get into the train station. We take nothing with us when we stand before God, the only thing we have is our Faith which showed up in our WORKS, which expressed itself in our actions, in our deeds. For according to a man’s deeds, He repays him; according to a man’s ways, He brings consequences. and loving devotion to You, O Lord. For You will repay each man according to his deeds. If you say, “Behold, we did not know about this,” will not He who weighs hearts consider it? Does not the One who guards your life know? Will He not repay a man according to his deeds? I said in my heart, “God will judge the righteous and the wicked, since there is a time for every activity and every deed.” (Job 34:11, Psalm 62:12, Proverbs 24:12, Ecclesiastes 3:17) God says this ALL throughout HIS WORD.
Conduit, Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. (Matthew 6:19-21) Where is your security? Is it in your 401k, is it in your job, your health, your fame, your bank statement, your family name or your church membership? Jesus, in Luke 12:33-34, gives us an idea of treasure in heaven when he says, Sell your possessions, and give to the needy. Provide yourselves with moneybags that do not grow old, with a treasure in the heavens that does not fail, where no thief approaches and no moth destroys. For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also. We are called to be CONDUITS- pass through agents. We have been blessed, to bless others. Do you consider what you have yours? Or is what you have GOD’s and he is allowing you to steward it to be a blessing of compassion, concern and care? Read Matthew 25:31-46 and read about GODS accounting system: 31When the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the angels with Him, He will sit on His glorious throne. 32All 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…. The TIME IS NOW, to start storing up treasures in heaven and not at the BANK OF THIS WORLD. With all the hurt and the homeless and the helplessness in these CORONA TIMES, how can you be different than the world and give away what little you have to those who have less? How will GOD reconcile your account before HIM? To he who much is given, much will be required! Some have been given much and used it to secure their position in this world. Some have been given much and blessed many more through their generosity and compassion. The Sheep and the Goats- on which hand will God put you? The time is now to clean up your accounting system! For this is the TIME that Jesus spoke of when He said: Truly, I say to you, there are some standing here who will not taste death until they see the Son of Man coming in his kingdom.” People get ready, there’s a LION A COMING!