Matt 7 presents a good example of how dangerous it is to modify the words of the Bible. Some do it inadvertently and some willfully in order to twist the teachings to support their church doctrine.
I have had extensive discussion on this Matt 7 passage with Sonship, Kelly Jay, Second Son and others. In all cases they used this passage to prove
- that Jesus condemns good works
- that good works done to get salvation is the doctrine of Satan
- that Jesus does not know people who do good works
None of the above doctrinal conclusions are correct. All are the end result of not adhering to the exact words of Christ. The truth is that nowhere does the Bible condemn good works. Good works are good. No question about it
In the passage Jesus makes a statement about being wary of false prophets. They are like corrupt trees producing evil fruit and they will be destroyed.
Next comes an example of these corrupt trees. Christians calling him Lord Lord [obviously believers ] who described their works as wonderful works [these are miracle workers casting out devils etc]. Here comes the dangerous practice. Some Christians have removed the word 'wonderful' and inserted instead the word 'GOOD'. So they claim that Jesus condemns these people for doing good works. Even claiming that good works are corrupt and evil and the work of Satan.
The truth is Jesus is condemning these people for being workers of iniquity [iniquity means all manner of sin and evil], as is clearly stated. Obviously they did miracles but they neglected to follow the commandments of Christ and live righteously and do good works. Jesus further emphasized this conclusion by immediately stating that it is a wise man that hears his words and follows his commandments, but the foolish man does not follow his commandments.
Other examples of Bible twisting
- relationship with Christ [not in the bible]
- works based salvation [not in the bible]
- changing the meaning of the Good Samaritan parable to say that the GS was Jesus Christ.
- twisting the Mat 25 description of judgment so that Christians are excluded
This practice of modifying, twisting, massaging, changing biblical terms and expressions has created a completely new church jargon and an entirely new doctrine alien to the teachings of Christ and the Apostles.
Needless to say their doctrine and the conduct of some church pastors and leaders is corrupt and full of 'wonderful works' - casting out devils, healing etc, much of which are scam artists pretending to perform miracles, bearing evil fruit and fit to be burned.
Dont be a foolish man. Keep these church types who twist the bible and the teachings of Jesus Christ, at an arms length.
Be a wise man. Follow the commandments of Christ
Here is the text of Matt 7 passage
[i]Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit. A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.
Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.
Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock: And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock. And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand: And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it. (Matthew 7:15-27 KJV)