“Analysis of Matthew Chapter 7:21-23,” by Andrew J. Schatkin

“Analysis of Matthew Chapter 7:21-23,” by Andrew J. Schatkin

Ladies and gentlemen and my fellow thinkers, and those of you who reject media slogans, political code words, and political correctness for truth, facts and, if you will embrace political incorrectness and critical thought and intellectual reflections. I ask you to join me in another intellectual journey where together we will attempt and find light and reject the darkness our society does offer us in the form of lies, falsehoods, slanders, and propaganda.

Today, I will seek to interpret analyze and grasp to seek and point the way to an understanding of the word of Jesus found in the gospel of Matthew, chapter 7:21-23 where Jesus says and instructs us with the following words: ‘Not everyone who says to me lord, shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of my father who is in heaven. On that day, many will say to me, lord, lord, did we not prophesy in your name and cast out demons in your name and do many mighty works in your name? And then will I declare to them, I never knew you; depart from me you evildoers.’

So, my dear friends, believers and non-believers, both what is Jesus driving at here and what does he mean to tell us? Does he mean that those who say his name, perhaps meaning pray public, or proclaim his name publicly, are on the surface and do not reflect the true faith with works of love, mercy and charity? Does he mean the same to be true of prophesying, casting out demons and doing mighty works in your name? He ends with the startling sentence that ‘I never knew you depart from my you evildoers.’ Does Jesus mean to tell us these so-called deeds of religiosity lack sincerity and depth? I do not think he means to reject these acts and deeds of religion and faith. Matthew tells us in these reported words of his wisdom and authority that Jesus is concerned with deeds of love charity and mercy. Right words and great spiritual power are not enough. Only a life of love and justice will suffice at the moment of the last judgment where our lives will be weighed and assessed, not on the grounds he speaks of. Jesus is concerned with deeds and ethics, and not puffed-up works lacking a sincere basis in the person’s soul, but based on on exhibiting religious self-importance, if not arrogance. These verses are a warning that faith and the assurance of salvation do not excuse us from living a life based on deeds not spectacular acts of religious belief, such as prophesying or casting out demons. One could conclude from these words of Christ that Jesus looks at the inner person and how he behaves and lives in accord with the commandments of loving his neighbor and loving his enemy. Jesus comments here are not meant to reject the value of prophesy, casting out demons, and the public proclamation of his name, but to inform of the possible insincerity of these great religious deeds, but to tell us he looks at the life of the person and its ethics and deeds of love done for and on behalf of others in that life. Jesus tells us here that is how we will be measured at the final judgment and seems to tell us that these outward acts and professions are not enough, possibly based more on self than the love of others we are commanded to live and exhibit.

Ladies and gentlemen, I do hope you will find some value in my interpretation of these words of the savior and I approach these words of Christ with humility and a great sense of my inadequacy to set myself to this awesome task of gaining an understanding of the mind of god as stated in Holy Scripture. I welcome to my e mail address a.schatkin48@gmail.com.