SIN: Not Just the Behavior Only Which is Judged by God

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When talking to the tares or the heathen and the topic gets around to “going to heaven,” one thing is almost universally offered as “proof” that the non-believer is on the right path:

The number or type of “good deeds” performed by the non-believer.

Which is NOT biblical in any manner.

Still, these “good deeds” are offered as “proof” that the one speaking is a“good person.”

MORE: I’m a Good Person: There is NONE Who Doeth Good

Donating money or time to feed the poor, working with kids or helping out at my church are all popular answers.  One person even offered that he was”sure” he was going to heaven because he took out his late mom’s Bible when he “prayed every Sunday.”

NONE of the above will contribute to a person’s eternal destination

No man is good enough to keep God’s laws.

“For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all.”
–James 2:10

That is the reason God gave the Ten Commandments to the Hebrews: to teach them that NO MAN was good enough to obey the Ten Commandments–which is why Jesus Christ came to offer a path to salvation for lost men.

When Jesus Christ came the first time around, He emphasized that it was not only one’s behavior that God looked at when He judged, but also one’s thoughts, intentions and motivations that one kept in his heart.

God judges NOT ONLY behaviors, but also that which man believes to be the secrets of his heart.

“But those things which proceed out of the mouth come forth from the heart; and they defile the man. For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies”
–Matthew 15:18-19

Is one puffed up because he is not a murderer?

What did Jesus say about that?

“Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not kill; and whosoever shall kill shall be in danger of the judgment: But I say unto you, That whosoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment: and whosoever shall say to his brother, Raca, shall be in danger of the council: but whosoever shall say, Thou fool, shall be in danger of hell fire.”
–Matthew 5:21-22

Our Saviour in this verse pursues an analogy between the punishments inflicted by the Jewish courts, and the punishments of a future life. Whosoever shews causeless anger, shall be in danger of “the judgment,” or of a punishment corresponding to the capital punishment imposed by the lesser council of twenty-three members. Whoever calls his brother vain or worthless, shall incur a punishment, answering to that of stoning, inflicted by the Sanhedrim, or great council of seventy-two. But whosoever violently rails at his neighbour, shall be subject to a most grievous punishment, compared to that of burning the children alive in the valley of Hinnom.
–Dr. Hammond, Grotius; British Family Bible Notes

Your teachers tell you that the commandment of God is, Thou shalt not kill. But I, says our Lord, go much further; I say, thou shalt not indulge any resentment against thy brother; thou shalt not use any reproachful or contemptuous language towards him; for these are the things that lead and provoke to the most atrocious deeds.
–Bishop Porteus, British Family Bible Notes

This is all echoed by the apostle John.

“We know that we have passed from death unto life, because we love the brethren. He that loveth not his brother abideth in death. Whosoever hateth his brother is a murderer: and ye know that no murderer hath eternal life abiding in him.”
–1JOHN 3:14-15

If we do a person no harm, yet if we wish him harm, “Whosoever hateth his brother is a murderer.” For indeed, hatred not only leads to murder, and too often, when indulged, produces it unexpectedly, but it is always, though perhaps for the most part in a lower degree, the very spirit of murder in the heart; and it is by our hearts that God will judge us.
British Family Bible Notes

There are those who question the Word of God on this point. BUT, apparently, if a man hates someone, he likely would murder them IF HE HAD THE CHANCE AND HE WOULD NOT GET CAUGHT.

God judges the INTENT of the heart–not just the physical results of that intent; it is not only the behavior of murder which God judges, but the evil of hate which one keeps in one’s heart.

Jesus also taught looking at a woman with lust is adultery.

“Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not commit adultery: But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart.”
–Matthew 5:27-28

But I say, Let not thine heart or thine eye commit adultery; for here it is that sin begins, and here it must be crushed. This is wisdom, this is morality, in its most perfect form, in its essence, and in its first principles: bad thoughts quickly ripen into bad actions; and if the latter only are forbidden while the former are left free, all morality will soon be at an end. Our Lord therefore, like a wise physician, goes at once to the bottom of the evil; He extirpates the first germ and root of the disease, and leaves not a single fiber of it remaining to shoot up again in the heart.
–Bishop Porteus, British Family Bible Notes

A most striking proof of the superiority of that morality which is taught in the New Testament, is the great stress which is laid by our Saviour on the regulation of the thoughts: see Mt 15:19; 23:25,27. There can be no doubt with any reflecting mind, that, in order to regulate effectually the propensities of our nature, the check is to be laid, not upon the action, but upon the thought. And, as to this matter, the judgment of our Saviour is decisive. He makes the control of the thought essential; with Him, internal purity is every thing.
–Archdeacon Paley, British Family Bible Notes

In case some may argue that these teachings were only taught by Jesus–with no basis in the Old Testament–the following is offered.

“For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry.”
–1Samuel 15:23

As well as these other  warnings equating bad attitudes and hidden thoughts with bad behavior.

“Mortify therefore your members which are upon the earth; fornication, uncleanness, inordinate affection, evil concupiscence, and covetousness, which is idolatry”
–Colossians 3:5

“For this ye know, that no whoremonger, nor unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, hath any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God.”
–Ephesians 5:5

As a man may be guilty of adultery, and yet never touch a woman, and of murder, yet never strike his neighbour; so he may be guilty of idolatry, and yet never bow his knee to an idol: secret idolatry, soul idolatry, will shut out of heaven, as well as open idolatry. Any thing that has our highest esteem and regard, our extreme love and delight, and is the special object of our hope, our affiance and trust, of our fear and care, this we make our god.

And thus the covetous man is an idolater, for he gives these acts of soul-worship to the creature, to something in the world which is not God. Every natural man is an idolater; either the world, or some worldly lust, is his god, and no idolater can have, while such, any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God.
–William Burkitt’s Notes on the New Testament

Nor covetous man, who is an idolater; because he serves Mammon instead of God, loves his riches more than God, and placeth his hope in them.
Matthew Poole’s Commentary

MORE: IDOLATRY: There is More Than One Way to Worship an Idol

Just to make sure there is no confusion, SIN is not only one’s sinful behavior, but the sinful thoughts one holds in one’s heart–and naturally lead a man to sin–even if one does not share these thoughts with other men.

This is only a reminder for all of those who believe they are a “good person” because they do “good deeds.

REMEMBER: God will judge everyone on the inner man–on what is in a man’s heart–which no one but God sees.

“But the LORD said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the LORD seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the LORD looketh on the heart.”
–1SAMUEL 16:7

DOES the reader harbor ill will and/or hatred against his brother?

DOES the reader look upon members of the opposite sex with lust in their heart?

DOES the reader believe that these intentions will go unnoticed by a holy and perfect judge?

It is not YET too late: there is still time to change direction (repent), place your faith (hope) for the future entirely on Jesus Christ and enter the kingdom of heaven.

DOES the reader believe he is saved?

Make Your Calling and Election Sure: End Times Survival

DOES the reader believe he is NOT saved?

Time is Running Out: Today is the Day of Salvation

THE GOSPEL OF JESUS CHRIST

“Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain. For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:

And that he was seen of Cephas, then of the twelve: After that, he was seen of above five hundred brethren at once; of whom the greater part remain unto this present, but some are fallen asleep. After that, he was seen of James; then of all the apostles. And last of all he was seen of me also, as of one born out of due time. ”
1 Corinthians 15:1-8

“For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.”
-–Romans 1:16

MORE: Eternal Salvation Through Jesus Christ: Salvation Messages from End Times Prophecy Report

[Portions of this piece appeared originally in End Times Prophecy Headlines: July 26-28, 2019.]

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by Jeremiah James
–with Mondo Frazier

image: Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay.com

© Jeremiah J. Jameson and End Times Prophecy Report, 2012-19. © Mondo Frazier and End Times Prophecy Report, DBKP 2007-2019. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Jeremiah J. Jameson and End Times Prophecy Report with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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Author: Jeremiah J Jameson

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