How many times have we asked, “What is Your will Lord?” We usually think of activities we must do to please Him or how to behave to be identified with Him. All external answers, all actions initiated by us, striving for Him, when He has already done the ultimate striving ever performed on heaven or earth. God’s will was Jesus.     The will of the Father has been cited as “doing His Word”...well, there is a lot of Word to do. Is it forgiving your enemies....turning the other cheek...or overcoming evil for good....being as a little child....healing the sick, casting out devils, raising the dead, or blessing those that despitefully use you, or trusting Him with all your heart or feeding the orphans? There are many things we can act on in the Word; many things to Do. In Matthew 7:21, Jesus explains the will of the Father quite clearly:

21“Not everyone who says to me, Lord, Lord

Shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but

He who does the will of My Father in heaven

22 “Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord

have we not prophesied in Your name,

cast out demons in Your name and

 done many wonders in Your name?’

23 “And then I will declare to them

, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me,

You who practice lawlessness!”


Jesus states that all the works they had touted as reason for His approval; prophesied, cast out demons, many mighty works, fell quite short. His greatest value was not in what they had accomplished, but in their being known by Him. That word, known means experiential, beyond intellectual knowledge, known as through relationship, oneness as a husband and wife are to be known to each other....perfect union. It is not a state of being one can earn or strive for, but rather submit to. This is not to suggest we should abandon the world and all its suffering, but Jesus requires far more than good works, because He accomplished all. He seeks wholehearted unity,  and He offers it through the Cross. We have the choice to agree with His finished work or not. Anything we bind or loose in His name is simply that, an agreement with what He has already achieved through His blood and stripes and ultimately His cross. Without relationship,  that is being known by Him, all achievements are self-willed, self-motivated, self-aggrandising. In this verse, those speaking are telling Jesus they have a right, having earned by their good works, a place. It is clear in Ephesians 2:8 that works is not to be boasted about and can in no way gain you a place in His kingdom. For God’s kingdom does not operate as human kingdoms do. When will believers actually believe grace is a gift? And He really did mean “It is Finished!”?

It is often suggested or vehemently proposed that obedience is uppermost in God’s mind when it comes to His children. But what if knowing us was His first priority? How would that change our relationship with Him? If we understood the story of the prodigal son, and that the Father never stopped being his father, even when the son blatantly disobeyed and even dishonoured him. Perhaps, we would at least have a glimpse of the Father’s heart toward us. It wasn’t what the son did or performed (good or bad) that determined the Father’s reaction to seeing his son, it was His love that brought the robe and ring and celebration. Could we perhaps, just for a moment believe God at His word? That He is for us not against us, that we are co-joined and therefore One Spirit, that we are heirs of God (Abba)? How would we live under such grace? A child that knows they are accepted no matter what, is a child unburdened and free, content, and open to possibility. A child informed that they must perform in order to receive approval is miserable, and never at peace. Which will we choose as believers in Christ?

When did grace become insufficient, and not enough? When we decided we had to earn our keep, deserve our place and then demand position and usually condemn those who did not follow suit. When did grace loose it’s very essence of being freely given. Can we earn salvation, NO! And most would agree, but once saved, apparently deserving the kingdom becomes an issue.....if not by moral behaviour, then by the works of healing and miracles. This was never the plan of the Cross for Jesus gave himself a ransom for many and laid down His own life by choice, not by our works. Let us be settled, contented children forever perfected (Hebrews 4:10) in Him, looking forward rather than sideways or backwards...looking beyond the Cross for that is where we stand as His children. We do not and cannot earn the gift of grace, we can only believe what seems too good to be true. That by grace we are saved through faith, and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God not of works unless anyone should boast. We boast only of Christ and Him crucified for nothing else compares!