for the Lord knows the way of the righteous, but the way of the wicked will perish. [psalm 1:6]
who will spend eternity with the Lord?
well, if the president of the united states was going to throw a party for his son, who would be invited? it would be his closest friends. friends that he knows and that know him. and so it is with God’s kingdom, the celebration of the glory of the Father and the victory of his Son. those who are invited are known by the Son and know the Son. this knowledge is intimate, like a best friend, and is the only way the invitation to eternity will be extended.
and so the wicked will perish because they are not known in this way by God. it would be easy to say we know God and to act as though we love him even if we did not, the same way we could say we knew the president and his Son and carried pictures of them around in our wallet and learned what they like to eat and what their favorite football team was. but if we showed up to that party, what would he say? he would say, “i don’t know you, you can’t come in.” it would not be enough to know about him, but we would have to be known by him.
and he said to them, “strive to enter through the narrow door. for many, i tell you, will seek to enter and will not be able. when once the Master of the house has risen and shut the door, and you begin to stand outside and to knock at the door, saying, ‘Lord, open to us,’ then he will answer you, ‘i do not know where you come from.’ then you will begin to say, ‘we ate and drank in your presence, and you taught in our streets.’ but he will say, ‘i tell you, i do not know where you come from. depart from me, all you workers of evil!’ [luke 13:23-27]
we must be known by God. we must be a friend of Jesus Christ. and this works the same way as if we wanted to be known by the president and his son. we would make an appointment and go to coffee. we would ask questions about them, and we would tell them all about ourselves. we would establish a relationship and meet with them regularly. we would talk with them, laugh with them, cry with them, and a longing to spend time with them would grow stronger each time we met. we would love them and they would love us.
and this is friendship with the Son of God. the way to be known by the Creator. to allow this intimacy to grow between us because we lay ourselves bare through the mirror of his Word. we grow to love his character and to love his glorious name. we feel that in his presence, we are home. this relationship building takes time, and although we know him and he knows us the minute we meet, there is endless depth of intimacy to be had.
you make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore. [psalm 16:11]
but what of righteousness? does he only seek to know the righteous? do we have to earn this invitation into his presence? absolutely not! as his children, we were known before the beginning of time [eph 1:4], we were loved and saved while we were still sinners [romans 5:8], and we were given his own righteousness [rom 3:22].
you are not known because you are righteous. you are made righteous because you are known. praise the Lord today for this free gift that you could not earn, that you could never attain on your own.
this grace that he lavished upon us because of his love for us is what we must depend on and cling to when we stand in the judgment. we need not fear condemnation. we need not fear death. we are known. we are loved. we are covered by his righteousness.
~ arwen eastman