The word that came to Jeremiah from the Lord: “Stand in the gate of the Lord’s house, and proclaim there this word, and say, Hear the word of the Lord, all you men of Judah who enter these gates to worship the Lord. Thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: Amend your ways and your deeds, and I will let you dwell in this place. Do not trust in these deceptive words: ‘This is the temple of the Lord, the temple of the Lord, the temple of the Lord.’
Jeremiah 7 is an unexpected place to get a Word to those that attend the modern church – or is it? I mean, they had problems back then, just like we do. They thought just going to ‘church’ (the Temple for them) was enough to get by. How many people think that being a church member means being a Church member – and yet might not make it into heaven? I joked yesterday how WA Criswell said you had to shake his hand to get into heaven. And I know he was joking too. But I’ve met too many people that rely on a childhood event or a dunk in a pool or a youth camp emotional service that later come to understand it is about forgiveness and grace, not about a name on a church mailing list.
Jeremiah, God’s spokesman, was to stand at the gate, the gate area where the men, the women, and those in the court of the Gentiles would hear him – as they where coming to worship. These weren’t those that slept in, those that were members on paper only, or those that didn’t care – these words were for those that came to worship – got up, got dressed, got the kids in the car, and now have arrived to the place to worship.
They thought, we think, that just because we do what is expected, we will be okay. We think if we go to church, do the church walk, and work hard at it, we will get to heaven. Nope, not gonna happen.
Now, this is is not about doing a check list, not about legalism, nor about earning your way into the Lord’s presence. We could never do enough for that … and that’s why we need grace. No, it is about we are to stop thinking we deserve anything just because we are here at church.
It is about recognizing all that God has done for you so seek to be your best for Him, seek to live for Him. Produce fruit of the Spirit … love, joy, peace, patience, et al.
Bottom line – trust Him and live based on what He has done for you. Don’t trust in what you do or where you are … trust in what He has done.
It’s not about race or place … it’s about grace.
So, when you enter into worship, today, next week, here, there, anytime and anywhere … trust in His grace. That is the only way He will call you His own.
Now, I don’t know about you … but that is a WOW moment for me.