For I say unto you, That except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven. -Matthew 5:20
Our Lord expects from His people a more exact performance of the divine will than even the Pharisees pretend to give. Observe in Matthew 6:17-20, He speaks here about jots and tittles never passing away, and about those who break the least of His commandments and teach men so; and I gather that He would have us observe the very least of His words and treasure up His commandments…When we come to this Book, it must be candidly and humbly, with this feeling, “I desire now to unlearn the most precious doctrine or practice I have ever learned if the Lord will show me that it is inconsistent with His will; and I desire to learn that truth which will bring me most into derision, or that ordinance which will submit me to the greatest inconvenience, if it is His will, for I am His servant, and I desire nothing to support my own opinion, or to be my own rule.”
I do not doubt, O disciple, but that you will reach heaven, even though you mistake some of the Master’s teaching, but I do doubt your ever reaching there if you wilfully despise His words or decline to learn what He came to teach. Our Lord has said unto us, “Go ye therefore, and disciple all nations, baptising them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost,” and therefore, if you will not become disciples, and learn of Christ, we have not even begun with you, neither can you be baptised, or bear the name of the Triune God. Jesus will have you obey His will, as well as trust His grace. Mind that, beloved. This demand for exact obedience is no word of mine, but of the Master. ~ C.H. Spurgeon
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