daily biblical sermons

Fr. Steven Scherrer, MM, Th.D.
Homily of Thursday, First Week of Advent, December 06, 2018
Isaiah 26:1-6, Psalm 117, Matthew 7:21, 24-27

Biblical quotations are taken from the Revised Standard Version unless otherwise noted


"Not every one who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,' shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven" (Matthew 7:21).

This teaching of Jesus shows us the importance of doing God's will, which is made known to us in his normative biblically revealed moral law, contained in the Ten Commandments and in their further development in the teaching of Jesus and in the other New Testament writings. To enter the kingdom of God it is necessary to do God's will and avoid serious sin, especially a chronic state of mortal sin. One must have more than good intentions, because, as Jesus today:

"Not every one who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,' shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven" (Matthew 7:21).

One cannot simply say:

"Oh, someday I will clean up my act, maybe when I am old and decrepit and the desires of the flesh are dead in me. Then I'll live a moral life, but not now, when the pleasures of the world and of human life are so important to me. God knows my heart, that I mean well and hope to one day repent and follow his law and do his will. So I'm sure that that will be enough. My faith will save me, not my works."

No! This is not an acceptable attitude and way of living. It is not a Christian life, and living this way will keep you out of the kingdom of God both now and after your death if you don't genuinely repent.

Some people think that "repent" means to do penitential actions like fasting, but the Greek word in the New Testament for repentance (metanoia) has a different meaning, namely to change your mind and direction, to leave your sins and your sinful life behind you and turn around and accept Christ and his justifying grace, and henceforth commit yourself to living a new, moral, and holy life in accordance with his will, as is made known to us by his moral law.

When St. Peter finished his first sermon on the day of Pentecost, and when the crowd "heard this they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, ‘Brethren, what shall we do?' And Peter said to them, ‘Repent [metanoesate], and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit'" (Acts 2:37-38).

St. Peter didn't mean repent and change your ways when you are old, maybe ten or twenty years from now.

St. Peter meant, If you want to be forgiven and receive the gift of the Holy Spirit now, you must repent now and accept Jesus as the Son of God and your Savior.

In today's gospel reading Jesus says:

"Not every one who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,' shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven" (Matthew 7:21).

Here Jesus makes it clear that more than just verbal faith is necessary. We must believe and at the same time we must resolve to change our life (repent) now and do God's will now and live a moral life now in accord with his moral law.

Only this kind of faith is genuine saving faith. Only this kind of faith will justify us. Those who have this kind of faith will have the house of their life built on a rock foundation.

A purely verbal faith that is not resolved here and now to truly follow God's will as it is biblically revealed in his moral law is insufficient, and we will not be justified or saved by it, because this kind of purely verbal faith is not authentic justifying and saving faith. It is not New Testament Christian faith.


It is true that we are justified by our faith, not by our works, as St. Paul so clearly teaches us (Romans 3:20, 28; Galatians 2:16; Ephesians 2:8-9), but true justifying faith contains genuine repentance.

This teaching is very important today, because there is a new false teaching now going around in the Church that God is revealing something new in our day, namely that genuine repentance is not always necessary anymore, that sometimes it is okay to continue living a gravely sinful life if it is too hard for you to live a moral life.

This new false teaching is being called the way of accompaniment and discernment, and it is also being called a "new paradigm" by certain Church leaders who say that pastors need to accompany families and hear the new things that God is revealing to them today that may in fact be against God's normative biblically revealed moral law.

Then these new false teachers say that pastors are to discern with modern broken families and thereby discover God's new morality for them, which, they say, may well contradict God's biblically revealed moral law. So they falsely say that this is what people should then follow. So, according to this new theory, each person is a law unto himself and has his own custom-made moral law that God is personally revealing to him and that could be contrary to his moral law as he revealed it to us in the Scriptures.

So the conclusion of this new false teaching is that it isn't always necessary for everyone to repent. Some may continue living in constant grave sin and nonetheless still enter the kingdom of God anyway.

This new teaching, of course, is an absurd denial of New Testament faith. More than just saying, "Lord, Lord," is necessary to be a living member of the kingdom of God now, and more than just saying, "Lord, Lord," is required to enter into eternal life in heaven after death.

The truth is: when God sees the sincerity of our repentance and the genuineness of our desire to immediately change our ways and amend our life, and when he sees that we accept Jesus as our Lord whom we promise to follow and as our Savior who sacrificed his life unto death to suffer our death sentence for our sins for us, he (God) declares us ungodly sinners righteous, because of what Jesus did for us on the cross. This divine declaration is our justification. It makes us righteous, overcomes our alienation from God because of our sins, and reconciles us to him.

Our life from this point on should be very different than it previously was. If it was immoral, it now becomes moral. Those who live in this new way have the house of their life built on a rock foundation, and it will withstand the storms of life.

But those who pay no serious attention to Jesus' teaching and to God's moral law are either not justified or lose their justification, and the house of their life is built on sand and will not withstand the storms of life, but will collapse.



» 2022-2023 Year A English
» 2021-2022 Year C English
» 2020-2021 Year B English
» 2019-2020 Year A English
» 2018-2019 Year C English
» 2017-2018 Year B English
» 2016-2017 Year A English
» 2015-2016 Year C English
» 2014-2015 Year B English
» 2013-2014 Year A English
» 2012-2013 Year C English
» 2011-2012 Year B English
» 2010-2011 Year A English
» 2009-2010 Year C English
» 2008 - 2009 Year B English
To receive my current daily Biblical sermons by email
Subscribe to DailyBiblicalSermons Free:
Enter Your Email Below and Click Subscribe

See my books!

Desert Living

Desert Living

Desert Living

All books are available and searchable on Amazon and Kindle.

Daily Biblical Sermons
© Copyright 2007-2009 Rev. Steven Scherrer, www.DailyBiblicalSermons.com. All are welcome to use the materials on this site, either via spoken or written form. However, if used in written form or retransmitted via internet or email, please INCLUDE the above copyright indication. Thank you.