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The Gospel According to Matthew

Matthew 7:21-23 - what does it mean?

Postby Nic J » Wed Jul 24, 2019 8:41 am

In Matthew 7: 21-23 it says " The one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven " ... what does that mean? Then it talks about casting out demons in the Lord's name. How can one do that without the help of the Lord? And the same with prophesy. How can one do that without God?
Nic J

Re: Matthew 7:21-23 - what does it mean?

Postby jimwalton » Fri Aug 16, 2019 12:44 am

Some may claim that prophesying in His name, driving out demons, and performing miracles is “doing the will of the Father.” Obviously not. Matthew 7.19 speaks about “fruit,” which could imply (since it’s in the same section) that these are false prophets, driving out demons and doing miracles for possibly nefarious purposes (Ex. 7.11, 22; Mt. 24.24; 2 Thes. 2.9; Rev. 13.13; 16.13-14; 19.20).

What matters is the person, not their power. It is the one who has the nature of Jesus who is in relationship with God, not just the one who displays power normally attributed to God.

So, “how can one cast out demons and prophesy without the help of the Lord?” According to these other texts (that I listed above), there are other powerful spiritual forces at work that can imitate and simulate the power of God—specifically designed and executed to deceive people (Mt. 24.24; 2 Cor. 11.13-14; Rev. 13.14). In this Matthew text, Jesus is warning us not to be taken in. Neither church leadership nor miraculous powers guarantee that a person is a true follower of Jesus. People use God for their own ends. Test everything (1 Thes. 5.21).

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