Least in the Kingdom

Matthew 5:19 Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven. 


I.    Introduction: 

A.     There is not equality in the kingdom of God, heaven, or God, or Christ (which is the same kingdom). 

1.       There are differences. 

2.       Where will I be? 

3.       Mark 10:31 states, But many that are first shall be last; and the last first. 

B.     These differences are not just for the millennium, but also for all eternity.

1.       Revelation 20:5,6 states, But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection. 6 Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection: on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years. 

2.       Revelation 22:5 states, And there shall be no night there; and they need no candle, neither light of the sun; for the Lord God giveth them light: and they shall reign for ever and ever. 

3.       The parable of the pounds, the talents, and the ten virgins points to a difference of position in the millennium and eternity. 

C.     There are positions we are granted by grace, and there are positions we earn by faithfulness. 

1.       We are saved by grace through faith in Christ.

a.      Ephesians 2:8-10 -  For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: 9 Not of works, lest any man should boast. 10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them. 

b.      Galatians 3:26 - For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. 

2.       We are heirs of God in his everlasting kingdom.

a.      Galatians 4:7 -  Wherefore thou art no more a servant, but a son; and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ. 

b.      II Peter 1:11 - For so an entrance shall be ministered unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. 


II.    We need break only one of the least commandments to be the least in the eternal kingdom of God. 

A.     What are these least commandments? 

1.       Men might disagree, but Christ makes his commandments very clear in this sermon on the mount. 

2.       It makes no real difference what men say, as God is the eternal Saviour and the final judge of all. 

B.     Notice some of these clear commandments.

1.       Unhappy Christians.  Matthew 5:12 – The word “blessed” means happy.  Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you. Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you. 

2.       Hidden Lights.  Matthew 5:13-16 – Christians ought to be established in the church of the Lord Jesus Christ.  Matthew 5:15 – Christians should put their light on the candlestick.  Revelation 1:12 – Christ is in the midst of the candlestick.  Revelation 1:20 – The seven candlesticks are the seven churches.  Many preach the true gospel, but they will be least in the kingdom because they have not adhered to the clear command of Christ to glorify God in his church, which is always local, never universal, nor invisible. 

3.       Self-Righteous.  Matthew 5:17-20 – Our righteousness must be greater than the Pharisees, who supposedly kept all the law of God, but kept their own law instead.  They rejected the clear Word of God because that word did not fit what they thought it ought to be.  Like Jehoiakim of Jeremiah 36 rejected the word of God, but it did not change what God said, thought or would do. 

4.       Quarrelers.  Matthew 5:21-26.  Sometimes we think murder is worse than quarrelling, but it is not, according to God.; 

5.       Adulterers.  Matthew 5:27-30 – Physical act or lustful look: fornication and adultery is fashionable today, but it is still not acceptable to God.  Those that look and those that dress so as to be looked at are guilty of this vile sin against God. 

6.       Swearers.  Matthew 33-37 – This passage is not talking about saying a pledge to the flag, or the Bible.  It is speaking about declaring you have the power to do such and such.  We do not even have the power to live, much less the power to do anything.  James 4:13-17 gives a clear example of false swearing.

7.       Grudgers.  Matthew 5:38-48 – Many don’t believe Christ said this, or surely he did not mean what he said.  Christ did not have a “slip of the tongue”, but said exactly what he meant, and he meant what he said.  These commandments must be accepted and obeyed if we are to be more than the least in the kingdom of God. 

8.       Show-Offs.  Matthew 6:1-8 – God sees when we do things to be seen of men.  He also sees when we do things because he laid that burden on us.  He sees the private life, and also the public life.  See also Matthew 6:16-18 concerning fasting.  Do not appear to men to fast, but fast before God. 

9.       Misers.  Matthew 6:19-34 – Trust God for daily and future provision, knowing he is much more able to provide for us than we are to even know what we need. 

10.   Worriers.  Matthew 6:35 – Take no thought or worry about tomorrow.  Do today what God wants you to do, and he will provide for tomorrow. 

11.   Hypocrites.  Matthew 7:1-5 – Those that do not see their own faults, yet continually try to help somebody before they try to fix themselves. 

12.   Wasters.  Matthew 7:6 – Do not give holy things to those that do not want them.  It is wasteful.  Give to those that want it.  In my ministry, I have learned not to pay much attention to those people in the church that do not want to serve God.  I have wasted some time trying to get them to serve God, when I should be paying attention to those that want to serve God (feeding the sheep).  There is no need trying to talk people into believing the truth when they do not want it.  

13.   Slackers.  Matthew 7:7-12 – We should always pray that God would fulfill the promises he gives to us.  If we do not do so, we are slackers.  If we attempt to supply our necessities without consulting God, we are slackers, as far as God is concerned.  If we worry and fret when we do not have, we are publishing everywhere that we do not trust God to supply for us. 

14.   Heedless.  Matthew 7:13-20 – We must be earnest and aware of our position and the desire of false prophets to lure us from the straight and narrow. 

15.   Disobedient.  Matthew 7:21-27 – The test of a true disciple is not lip-service, but do-service.  Matthew 7:24 states, 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:  A man does not build on the rock in order to be a Christian, but he builds on the rock because he is already a Christian.  It is our doing the words of Christ that makes us a Christian, but it is because we are already a Christian that we do the words of Christ.  A person cannot hold a great position in the kingdom of God if he breaks one of the least commandments.  We need to look at things the way God looks at it, not the way we look at it.