“Then the King will say to those on His right, ‘Come, you who are blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. For I was hungry, and you gave Me something to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me something to drink; I was a stranger, and you invited Me in; naked, and you clothed Me; I was sick, and you visited Me; I was in prison, and you came to Me.’”
—Matthew 25:34–36 (NASB)
In Matthew 25:34–36, we find Jesus in the middle of teaching about the judgement that will come to both believers and non-believers. He is telling His listeners, and those of us that would read it in later days, about the evidence in the life of a believer that can be seen here on earth leading up to the judgement day.
“Come, you who are blessed of My Father” (v. 34).
Jesus openly welcomes those who know Him as their Lord and Savior. When we see the word blessed, Jesus is describing the difference in mankind. He addresses both “blessed” and “not blessed” people. This isn’t what we have come to know as material blessing, but rather eternal blessing. When we surrender our lives to Christ we are “blessed.”
“Inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world” (v. 34).
God has always intended for mankind to be with Him. He has always reigned, is reigning, and will always reign. God’s love has always been faithful. God’s love for us didn’t begin with Jesus coming to earth. It began in the Garden of Eden and will remain until Christ returns. His desire is for mankind to understand their need for a Savior and repent of their sins. The world was built on that love.
“For I was hungry, and you gave Me something to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me something to drink; I was a stranger, and you invited Me in; naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison, and you came to Me” (vv. 35–36).
Jesus then speaks about what godly character looks like in the life of a believer. We, as humans, have basic needs. Jesus shows the importance of meeting those basic needs here in these verses. We need food and water to survive. We need interaction with other human beings. We need quality conversation and time with others. We need to be clothed so that we are protected. Jesus mentions when sickness comes or the isolation of prison occurs, we need to be shown kindness and compassion. Jesus lists the attributes that believers should take on (the same attributes the Apostle Paul indicates in Galatians 5:22).
I have always enjoyed music. Music has always been a part of my life. At a young age I would sing songs with my mother and my mamaw. Music just appeals to me. Music has always taught me lessons as well. So, whether I was learning my ABC’s or a biblical truth, music always made the learning process easier.
When I was in seminary, a local Christian bookstore located just a few miles away always had a good selection of Christian music. At that time there wasn’t an option to stream music, so I had to purchase CDs. I remember finding a CD with music from one of my favorite Christian bands that consisted of new recordings of older hymns. I remember listening to that CD on repeat while I sat in my truck. I would listen to one particular song, “They’ll Know We Are Christians.” The chorus of the song repeats: “They’ll know we are Christians by our love, by our love. Yes. they’ll know we are Christians by our love.”
This reminded me that if I claim Christ, people should be able to tell by how I love the world. This is what Jesus said in this passage. If we love people and want them to know Jesus, we have to live in a way that models His character.
Godly character reveals the heart of someone who is truly blessed by the Lord. This is how the world will know who we are by how we love.
Don Scrivener lives and serves in Lufkin, Texas, with his wife, Mary Martha, and children, Rani, Andrew, Jonas, and James Walter. Don is the associate pastor to students at Denman Avenue Baptist Church in Lufkin. He has been in student ministry for 15 years and loves to help students find their kingdom purpose.