“From the Heart” teaching by Drs. Rodney & Adonica Howard-Browne.
And then a certain lawyer arose to try (test, tempt) Him, saying, Teacher, what am I to do to inherit everlasting life [that is, to partake of eternal salvation in the Messiah’s kingdom]? 26 Jesus said to him, What is written in the Law? How do you read it? 27 And he replied, You must love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind; and your neighbor as yourself. 28 And Jesus said to him, You have answered correctly; do this, and you will live [enjoy active, blessed, endless life in the kingdom of God]. Luke 10:25-28 AMP
This lawyer tried to trip Jesus up and expose Him. However, the lawyer was the one whose heart and motives were exposed. The lawyer underestimated Jesus, by far. In his arrogance, this lawyer saw just an ordinary man, but he had no clue who he was dealing with. Jesus could not be tripped up by anybody and even when He was “exposed,” He was exposed as Who He was – the Son of God! Jesus was the Word made flesh (John 1:14). He knew the Word of God and submitted Himself to it. Even though He was the Son of God, He did not preach His own doctrines or draw people after Himself, but He always exalted the Father and pointed people back to the Word of God.
The lawyer asked Jesus a hard question about a very important subject – the eternal destiny of an individual. It was a question that everyone had an opinion on and everybody argued over. Through the ages, people have fought and even killed each other over the answer to this question. It has caused strife between friends and divided families and nations. The lawyer expected to trip Jesus up by either stumping Him with this question and exposing Him as a fraud or getting Him into a big argument, which he planned to win. Because Jesus knew the Word of God and submitted Himself to it, it was an easy question. The right answer was in the Word of God all along. He answered the lawyer’s question with another question, “What does the Word say? What does the law say?” and the lawyer had no choice, but to answer with what he knew the Word of God plainly said. In short – love God and love your neighbor. Now, you know that this lawyer did not love his neighbor – Jesus – or he would not have tried to deceive Him.
The biggest problem amongst the priests, ministers and teachers in Jesus’ day is the same problem that they have today – they preach it, but they don’t believe it. You see, if you truly believe something, then you will live it, you will act on it, you will conduct your life by its principles. Too many people preach the bible without having actually studied it or they know what it says, but they don’t take it to heart – they don’t believe it enough to change their life to line up with the Word of God. They are always looking for the answers, when God has already put the answers right under their noses.
So Jesus said to those Jews who had believed in Him, If you abide in My word [hold fast to My teachings and live in accordance with them], you are truly My disciples. And you will know the Truth, and the Truth will set you free.” John 8:32 AMP
The KJV says that “the truth will make you free.”
When people don’t want to submit to the Word of God, they try to find another solution that is more agreeable to their carnal nature. They ask everybody else’s opinion until they find an answer that “feels” right to them. In reality, the truth does not always “feel” right. The truth you hear is more likely to be painful to you than comfortable, but the truth will bring you into freedom.
The righteousness that is by faith says in Romans 10:8-9 NIV, “‘The word is near you; it is in your mouth and in your heart,’ that is, the word of faith we are proclaiming: That if you confess with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.”
Like the lawyer, many people claim to know the Lord, but they really only know about Him. They have not known Him or believed in Him enough to confess Him as their Lord and Savior. If you want to walk in freedom, if you want to make sure that you have eternal life and that you will go to heaven and not hell when you die, you must hear and obey the Word of God today. This is not a difficult thing – God has made it incredibly simple for us. There are no special qualifications that you must have and no difficult tasks that you must do. There is no class of people who are more or less qualified than any other to be able to receive the gift of God. All you must do is to hear the Word of God and obey the Word of God. Confess with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead and you will be saved – you will inherit eternal life.