Lord, Lord
Based on Series of Sermons on the Repetition of Name and Titles
Preached in PCC Worship Service, 28 April 2013
Part 1 of 3

We are continuing in our study of the repetition of names in the Bible. In this next series of articles, we’ll be looking at Matthew 7:21-23, where the Lord Jesus said, “Not everyone that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.”

This passage is part of the Sermon on the Mount which stretches from the beginning of chapter 5 of Matthew’s gospel all the way to the end of chapter 7. As the Lord draws this sermon to a close, He gives a number of very serious warnings to His hearers, and particularly His disciples.

In verses 13-14, He exhorts them (and us) to enter in at the strait gate, and to walk in the narrow way. That is the way that leads to life, but few there be that find it and walk in it. Then from verses 15-20, false prophets who come in among them in sheep’s clothing but are really ravening wolves inwardly. These false prophets may be identified by their fruits since a bad tree cannot bear good fruits and vice versa.

In our text, which follows immediately after His warning against false prophets, our LORD warns against the false or the mere profession of faith. Then from verse 24 onwards, the Lord will warn against the danger of hearing but not doing His word.

In verse 21, Christ gives us the proposition or the statement of fact, and then in verses 22-23, He illustrates and elaborates on it. I’ll like to do three things in our study of this passage.

First, I’ll like to draw out some truths about the person and work of Christ. Second, I’ll like to talk about the person and work of those who are not true believers in Christ and who will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Third, I’ll like to say something about the person and work of those who are true believers and who will enter into His kingdom.

In this article, we’ll look at just the first of these.

Something about the Person
and Work of Christ

The first thing we learn or are reminded of about the Lord Jesus Christ is that He is the One who reveals to us the will of His Heavenly Father. He is the divine prophet and revealer of God’s truth.

Verse 21 says, “Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.”

Here for the first time in Matthew’s gospel, the Lord Jesus uses the phrase “my Father which is in heaven” to describe His relationship with the One who is in Heaven. He is THE unique Son of God and God the Father is His Father in a unique sense. And as THE Son of God, one of the things He does is to reveal to us the will of His Heavenly Father.

The author of Hebrews puts it this way right at the beginning of his epistle, “God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds; Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high;”

Christ Jesus is not just one of the prophets of old like Moses or Elijah or David. He is superior to all the prophets of the Old Testament. He is the Son of God, the Great and Final prophet sent from heaven to give us the full and complete revelation of God. There can be no greater revelation of God apart from the Lord Jesus Christ. If we refuse to hear the words of Christ the divine prophet and Son of God, we will never be saved.

Here in our text, Christ gives us the Word of His Father in heaven concerning those who would enter into His kingdom, namely, that those who do His will will enter in. And conversely, He tells us in verse 23 that those who work iniquity will not enter into the kingdom of heaven.

So Christ is the great prophet and Son of God.

The second thing we learn about Him from this passage is that He is the divine judge of all men at the final judgment. The phrase “Many will say to me in that day…” refers to the great and final Day of Judgment at the end of history. Everyone will appear before the Judgment Seat of Christ, and He will be the final arbiter and judge of all men.

He will hear the case of every single person that ever lived on this earth from Adam down to the last man. For some, He will welcome into His everlasting kingdom while for others, He will cast them into outer darkness.

The apostle Paul says in Acts 17:31 says, “Because he (that is God) hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given assurance unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead.”

Christ is THAT man whom God has appointed and ordained to judge the whole world in righteousness. He is both the great prophet who reveals to us the will of His Father for our salvation and the great king and judge who is even now reigning in heaven and will someday come again to judge the world.

And the only way for Him to be able to do all that is if He is both fully God and fully man. And indeed He is! He, the divine second person of the Triune Godhead, took on the full nature of man in order to be the Mediator between God and Man.

He is unique. There is none like Him. And there is no other way of salvation apart from Him. He is the only ladder between heaven and earth, and the only intermediary between God and man.

Now if you have been a believer for some time now or if you have studied the shorter catechism, then what I’ve just said would probably not be new to you. You’ll be familiar with the doctrine of the deity and humanity of Christ, and of His offices of prophet and king.

But now, I want you to bear these things in mind before we launch into the next article. The reason I say this is that the words of our text are among the most solemn and serious words ever uttered in this world.

Dr Martyn Lloyd Jones wrote of them, “Indeed, were any man to utter such words we should feel compelled not only to criticize but even to condemn him. But they are words spoken by the Son of God Himself, and therefore demand our most earnest attention.”

And then he says this, “These words are extremely solemn, and the only way in which we can consider them truly is to do so in the light of the fact that a day is coming ‘when all earthly scenes shall pass away.’ It is a word addressed to men and women who are conscious of the fact that they will have to stand before God in the final judgment.”

In our next article, we will consider something about the person and work of those who are not true believers in Christ and who will never enter the kingdom of heaven.

—Linus Chua