These three verses come to me after a week-long study on false prophets. There is for me a lot to unpack in so few verses. Footnotes are taking me in all directions, but the one thing that is really standing out to me this morning is the final statement of the Savior.
And then will I profess unto them: I never knew you; depart from me, ye that work iniquity.Verse 23 (emphasis added)
The final judgment is placed squarely on the Savior’s knowing me! It is not enough for me to think or believe that I am acquainted with Christ, He has to know me in order for me to be saved! There are multiple scriptures that support this statement. And the big question that I am asking this morning is: How or what do I have to do for Christ to know me?
For how knoweth a man the master whom he has not served, and who is a stranger unto him, and is far from the thoughts and intents of his heart?Mosiah 5:13
So for Christ to know me, I need to serve him. I need to know his will and as far as possible try to understand the thoughts and intent of the Master’s heart.
Mosiah 26 offers a more detailed account of that final judgment. This seems to be a very polarized judgment, which hinges on one simple principle: whether we know Christ or not.
Alma 26:9, Ammon rejoices in the Lamanite converts because of the love that now exists between them, but then also adds this: “For if we had not come up… they would also have become strangers to God.” In other words, Jesus would not have known them in that intimate manner of which we have been discussing here.
In Luke 13, the Savior is reported as having taught the same principle with this slight variation, repeated twice: “I know you not whence ye are.” This is loosely coupled also with the teaching of those who waited for their Lord’s coming. It makes me think of the parable of the ten virgins. Five were ready, five were not. Where were the five that were not prepared? What were they doing there? Why does the location matter?
Perhaps, the better question was where were the five that were prepared? What were they doing there?
And that which fell among thorns… bring no fruit to perfection.Luke 8:14-15 (emphasis added)
But that on the good ground are they, which… bring forth fruit with patience.
There is a fairly healthy tension within me when I read about bringing forth fruit or good works. That tension is between personal refinement and good works. Both are necessary, but when I read the insight about the parable of the sower from Luke’s account, this particular account suggests that the good fruit leans towards personal refinement.