Blog # 44 UNLESS
Recently it occurred to me to look in the Bible to trace the use of the word "unless". Unless is a strong word, a word that puts definite fences around actions thoughts and plans. Unless places us inside or outside. It is a word of power. I will give you a few of the references in the New Testament in which the word occurs.
Matthew 5: 20. Jesus is speaking. "I tell you, unless your holiness surpasses that of the Scribes and Pharisees you shall not enter the Kingdom of God." Matthew 18: 3. Jesus called a little child over and stood the child in their midst, and said: I assure you, unless you change and become like little children you will not enter the Kingdom of God. Matthew 18: 35 After telling a story of a man who did not treat his neighbor mercifully, Jesus says : My Father will treat you in exactly the same way , unless each of you forgives his brother from his heart.
John 3: 2. Jesus teaches Nicodemus in these words: I solemnly assure you, no one Can see the reign of God unless he is born from above. John 4 48. No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him. John 12: 24. Unless the grain of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains a grain of wheat. But if it dies it produces much fruit. John 19: 11 Jesus is speaking to Pilate at the time of the trial of Jesus: "You would have no power over me whatsoever unless it were given you from above.
Unless we be holy, unless we change and become like little children, unless we forgive our brothers and sisters from our hearts, unless we reform our lives, unless we are born from above, unless the Father draw us, then we cannot please God and attain His Kingdom.
This is the message Jesus brought to Jerusalem and Jericho. It is the message He brings to us today. We must be holy, like children, forgive one another, believe. Jesus did all of this before us and invites us to follow Him to the Kingdom. May our lives be a great "Amen!" to His desire!