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What Is The Most Important Verse In The Bible?

If you were to ask 10 Christians this question you would get 10 different answers. But as Iím writing this page and itís my website, I get to choose!

Which verse have I chosen and why?

It appears in the Gospel of Matthew Chapter 7 and verse 21. The words are spoken by Jesus and read as follows:

"Not everyone who says to me, "Lord, Lord" will enter the Kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven." (NIV)

To complete the picture, I will also quote the following two verses in this context, verses 22 and 23:

"Many will say to me on that day, "Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?" Then I will tell them plainly, "I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!"

So why have I chosen this verse?

I believe that this verse sums up the central message of the Bible, from Genesis to Revelation. In the Book of Genesis we read of a man and a woman who choose to rebel against Godís authority in their lives and instead live life their own way, without reference to His will for them.

Throughout the Old Testament we see God calling to people to live in fellowship with Him, living by His laws. Instead of living as rebels, they were to live in obedience to His laws for their good and for His glory. Indeed, God promised his people a blessing if they obeyed, and a curse if they did not. A few notable exceptions did receive Godís endorsement. These were people who sought to please God by being obedient to Him. Noah, Abraham, Moses, and King David were such people.

The constant message of the Old Testament prophets was one of calling the people to repent for their wickedness and instead to draw near to God and live in obedience to His commands. Mostly their pleas fell on deaf ears.

When Jesus came with the Good News of the Kingdom of God, he attracted few genuine followers. Many of these fell away as the demands of The Kingdom became clear.

In 2006 nothing has changed. The demands Jesus makes of Kingdom followers remain the same: "only he (she) who does the will of my Father who is in heaven" will enter the Kingdom of Heaven. We can do all sorts of fancy activities "for God", even wonderful supernatural works, but unless our heart seeks Godís will and acts upon what He shows us, we are deceiving ourselves. Jesus is our model, who said about himself : "So whatever I say is just what the Father has told me to say." (Gospel of John Chapter 12 verse 50)

In the last book of the Bible, the Book of Revelation, the same message shines through: Revelation Chapter 22 verse 14 says: "Blessed are they that do his commandments , that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city." (AV) In Revelation we see Heaven populated by those who love the will of God and rejoice to see Godís Kingdom expressed in all its fullness: by the reigning and ruling of God over their lives.

The question I must therefore ask myself is this: "Am I consistently and faithfully seeking to do Godís will in my life?"

If you wish to read further on this topic, I can thoroughly recommend the book:

"The Blessings of Obedience" by Andrew Murray.

(NIV = New International Version AV = Authorised Version)

obey God's commands

This page © Brian Johnson 2006

Permission is granted to copy and distribute the text on this page for non-commercial purposes.