46 “So why do you keep calling me ‘Lord, Lord!’ when you don’t do what I say? 47 I will show you what it’s like when someone comes to me, listens to my teaching, and then follows it. 48 It is like a person building a house who digs deep and lays the foundation on solid rock. When the floodwaters rise and break against that house, it stands firm because it is well built. 49 But anyone who hears and doesn’t obey is like a person who builds a house without a foundation. When the floods sweep down against that house, it will collapse into a heap of ruins.”
When it comes to obedience here in Luke 6 we see Jesus asking a:
1. Direct and difficult question
After Jesus finishes what has become the most famous sermon in history, the “Sermon on the Mount” He confronts the crowd and all Christians with our greatest challenge, His LORDSHIP in our lives. After telling us about how to inherit the Kingdom of God and warning us about the weightiest matters of time and eternity He turns to the truth about obedience. Jesus is acutely aware that there are those in the audience who instead of obeying are content to just observe. Today there are many who may listen to Jesus but don’t live for Jesus. They are content to come to church and be part of the crowd but not to carry out His commands. The real question that we need to ask is not just are we reading God’s Word but is it radically changing our lives. There are many who dutifully do their devotions every day yet upon closing the Word walk away and never walk it out. They may be in the Word but the Word is not in them. Jesus makes it clear that it’s not just about acknowledging with our heads but actively engaging with our hearts. If Jesus is Lord of our lives, there must be obedience to what He has to say. In reality if to try and say “no Lord” is really an oxymoron, for if He truly is Lord then we are His subjects, and subjects say yes. Matthew 7:21-23 is a parallel passage where we see Jesus talking about doing the Will of God, in it He says: “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’” Now there are three things that strike me about those who will stand before Christ and claim Him as Lord only to be cast out. First they will call Him Lord, they may know the lingo but they don’t know the Lord. They claim to be followers yet they are far from the Father. They are like the 5 foolish virgins who returned from buying oil for their lamps only to find that they had missed the bridegroom’s arrival. Matthew 25: 11-12 says that they pounded upon the door and cried “Lord, Lord open the door for us, but he replied, ‘Truly I tell you, I don’t know you.” They may have called Him Lord but they did not know Him as Lord. The second scary thought is that there will be MANY, this is the same Greek word used to describe the multitudes that flocked to hear Jesus. There will be many multitudes that will say ‘Lord, Lord’ but in reality never lived for Him. Are you part of the multitudes of many who claim Jesus yet don’t carry out His commands? Third not only will they claim Christ but notice what they will base their claims on, their works not His, “we prophesied in Your Name, cast demons out in Your Name, and have done wonders in Your name.” These may seem like impressive things but according to Jesus they are secondary because He says the critical and central issue is: “I never knew you!” The real issue is do you have a relationship with Jesus, because everything else is a secondary side issue. It is interesting to note that people have become sidetracked with these secondary issues, to the point that they have stolen center stage. We are a people who no longer chase after His commands but worship after works while refusing to walk out His word. Prophecy has become prominent, people who seek after a word from God but no longer seek after the sacred teaching of scripture. There seems to be more of a drive for deliverance ministries that focus on the physical healing while neglecting the soul. A hunger for physical healing over a heart healing that leads to holiness. There is a craving after signs and wonders more than the Savior and His Word. Look as Christians we do not follow after signs and wonders we follow Jesus. You can’t look to signs and wonders as proof that the person preaching is the real deal remember God used a wicked man named Balaam in Numbers 23, he even used Balaam’s donkey. Then there was Caiaphas the high priest who only cared about power and position yet God used him to prophesy that Jesus would die for all the people, John 11:51-52. It was the wicked magicians of Pharaoh’s court in Egypt who duplicated the miracles of Moses by using magic. Even the evil sons of Sceva in Acts 19 cast out demons. There will be many who cry out “Lord, Lord” but His reply to them will be, “I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice LAWLESSNESS” Instead of living for the Lord they will be living lawless lives. What a tragedy to have the truth of Jesus teaching in your hand but not in your heart, to have His living Word but not to walk out His word. There will be many who major on the minors and in reality reject a relationship with the Redeemer. Are you living your life for the Lord or lawlessness, are you following Him or foolishly faking it? There is no getting around Jesus direct question, “why do you call me Lord and do not obey?” To do what Jesus commanded will take all of your attention and energy, it will mean putting self aside so that you can say yes to the Savior. His commands will always be for our best but they may not always feel the best. In Jeremiah 6:16 we find a powerful and profound verse instructing us to follow His way: “This is what the Lord says: “Stand at the crossroads and look; ask for the ancient paths, ask where the good way is, and walk in it, and you will find rest for your souls. But you said, ‘We will not walk in it.’ The way we are to walk is according to His Will, it’s not some new trendy or glamorous way, it’s the ancient path, rugged and hard at times, but tried and true. A path that results in rest, where we can say this is what Jesus did in my life, not Lord I did this or I did that. Are you faithfully following Jesus or are you calling Him Lord with your words and living lawlessly in your walk? Where do you need to choice today to obey? Is there any part of your life where you are living lawlessly instead of living for the Lord?