I find it curious that Jesus, while in the middle of a discussion about being a disciple tells his followers that one day God will have every person account for their actions.Matt 16:27. Jesus is probably quoting the Psalms here, meaning that this was first an Old Testament theme; but Paul also continues with this thought in his epistles. Rom2:6, 14:12,23; “Who will render Everyman according to his deeds”. Jesus reiterates this idea over and again in the Revelation 2:23,20:12,22:12 ; “and all the churches will know that I am He who searches the minds and hearts; and I will give to each one of you according to your deeds.”
I find it curious we live in a day where the Evangelical church is adamant in expounding their nuanced views on proper theology, yet no one gets to heaven by having their doctrinal ducks well sorted. New Testament scholar & theologian Scott McKnight said in an interview for Christianity Today 2007 ” Jesus declared that we will be judged according to how we treat the least of these (Matt. 25:31-46) and that the wise man is the one who practices the words of Jesus (Matt. 7:24-27). In addition, every judgment scene in the Bible is portrayed as a judgment based on works; no judgment scene looks like a theological articulation test.”
Let’s clarify that he is not advocating working our way to heaven (he is talking about a faith that produces genuine goodness) , or that what we believe is not important….we have to get certain things right about who Jesus is…but beyond that most people have a theology in flux. ..And that is OK…you don’t have to have it all right to get to heaven. Your view on the Atonement pales in comparison to your view on love. When we get stuck on doctrinal correctness, we lose the focus that making the tree good so it produces fruit, is Jesus primary concern for us. Matt12:33-35.
It certainly seems that God is not as interested in us believing IN Jesus as He is in us BELIEVING Jesus. We are ready to call Him Savior, but is Jesus our Teacher in the school of life? Is our study of Scripture to gain biblical facts to tell each other, or to bring the Living Word into our souls in order to be like our Teacher?
I find it curious that this is rarely talked about from our church pulpits or bible study groups. I wonder what Jesus might say about this.