I Know Thy Works

On the morning of May 16, the author was writing down some thoughts when the Lord directed his attention to Hebrews 4:12. The author really like the verse but it did not seem to fit well with what was being said at the time. Later that evening the author was doing his normal Bible reading when he came to a verse in Revelation 1:16. Immediately, this quickened his attention to Hebrews 4:12 and the Lord began to speak to his heart. The Lord was stringing appropriate verses together. The author sat down and started writing, the words and verses began to flow into my heart and the following message resulted:

Jesus said: John 5:22-24, “For the Father judgeth no man, but hath committed all judgment unto the Son: That all men should honour the Son, even as they honour the Father. He that honoureth not the Son honoureth not the Father which hath sent him. Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life.” Christ also said: John 5:26-27, “For as the Father hath life in himself; so hath he given to the Son to have life in himself; And hath given him authority to execute judgment also, because he is the Son of man.” AND He sent forth judgment unto victory (Mt 12:20). Therefore, we can conclude that Jesus has the authority to judge all men and this judgment shall accomplish God’s purposes upon this earth and result in victory.

In the book of Revelation we are told the following about Christ: “out of his mouth went a sharp twoedged sword (Rev 1:16).” What do the scriptures reveal about a twoedged sword? Hebrews 4:12, “For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.”

Who is the “Word of God?” Jesus is the Word of God (Jn 1:1-4, 1 Jn 5:7): Revelation 19:11-16, “And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war. His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on his head were many crowns; and he had a name written, that no man knew, but he himself. And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God. And the armies which were in heaven followed him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean. And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God. And he hath on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS.” Jesus is a King! A king sitteth in the throne to do judgment and justice and establish the land (1 Kgs 10:9, 2 Chr 9:8, Ps 89:14, 97:2, Pv 20:8, 29:4, Is 16:5, Jer 23:5). He hath prepared his throne for judgment (Ps 9:7).

We can now determine that Jesus, who is the Word of God, is a perfect judge because He can discern the thoughts and intents of one’s very heart. In other words, Christ has the ability to render righteous judgment even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit – true and righteous are thy judgments (Rev 16:7). Jesus shall not judge after the sight of his eyes, neither reprove after the hearing of his ears: But with righteousness shall he judge (Is 11:3-4). The LORD searcheth all hearts, and understandeth all the imaginations of the thoughts (1 Chr 28:9). All things are naked and opened unto the eyes of Him (Heb 4:13).

To what standard does Jesus judge? The Lord said: John 12:48, “He that rejecteth me, and receiveth not my words, hath one that judgeth him: the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day.” Jesus sealed His Word (gospel, covenant) with His very blood (Heb 9:14-28, Rev 5:9) which was Christ’s complete faithfulness to God’s will – a Lamb as it had been slain (Rev 5:6). He is worthy (Rev 4:8-11). Psalms 119:160, “Thy word is true from the beginning: and every one of thy righteous judgments endureth for ever.” The Word is truth and all will be judged by it.

There’s coming a day (Jn 16:8): the Lord come, who both will bring to light the hidden things of darkness, and will make manifest the counsels of the hearts: and then shall every man have praise of God (1 Cor 4:5). There is nothing you can hide, it will be revealed before God and all of creation. Who can stand in such a Judgment? Who shalt escape the judgment of God (Rm 2:3, Heb 9:27)? “Who can stand before his indignation? and who can abide in the fierceness of his anger (Nah 1:6)?” If you walk in darkness (wickedness): Psalms 44:21, “Shall not God search this out? for he knoweth the secrets of the heart.”

Ye shall give account to him that is ready to judge the quick and the dead (Rm 14:12, 1 Pt 4:5, 2 Tim 4:1). Fear God, give Him glory, love his appearing (2 Tim 4:8). Zephaniah 2:3, “Seek ye the LORD, all ye meek of the earth, which have wrought his judgment; seek righteousness, seek meekness: it may be ye shall be hid in the day of the LORD’S anger (also Nah 1:7, 1 Jn 2:28).” 1 Corinthians 11:31, “For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged.” Confess your transgressions before the Lord, seek his mercy, forsake your evil and wickedness so that you may have boldness in the day of judgment (1 Jn 4:17).

From the verses in the lead-in paragraph (and Jn 5:29 below), we know that God’s concerns are that: 1) Those who have obeyed His Word shall receive eternal life and shall not be condemned. AND 2) Those who have not obeyed His Word will receive condemnation unto death. Putting verses Jn 5:22-24 (above) and Jn 12:48 together, we can determine that Jesus is a perfect judge because he can discern one’s thoughts and intents as to whether they heard His Word and lived for God or whether they rejected Him and didn’t receive His Words (apply and live them). He shall discern between the righteous and the wicked, between him that serveth God and him that serveth Him not (Mal 3:18). John 3:36, “He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.”

Jesus proclaimed: “My judgment is just (Jn 5:30)” and “My judgment is true (Jn 8:16).” He shall judge the world in righteousness (Ps 9:8). Having read thus far, we can now understand how Jesus judges so righteously and the truth of these proclamations. Jesus also tells us: “I am he which searcheth the reins and hearts: and I will give unto every one of you according to your works (Rev 2:23, also Ps 7:9, Jer 17:10, 20:12).” – “for the righteous God trieth the hearts and reins (Ps 7:9).” The “reins” are the inward parts; the heart; or seat of the affections and passions. All things are naked and opened unto the eyes of Him (Heb 4:13). Perhaps you can see how the hypocrite, froward and wicked cannot possibly stand under such scrutiny (examination). Christ truly knows all!!!

The Lord’s sword shall pierce through many souls that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed (Lk 2:35). He cometh to judge the earth: with righteousness shall he judge the world, and the people with equity (Ps 98:9). The Lord is not a respector of persons (1 Pt 1:17). Romans 2:11, “For there is no respect of persons with God.” Colossians 3:25, “But he that doeth wrong shall receive for the wrong which he hath done: and there is no respect of persons.” For true and righteous are His judgments (Rev 19:2).

Christ clearly said: Matthew 16:27, “For the Son of man shall come in the glory of his Father with his angels; and then he shall reward every man according to his works.” AND John 5:29, “And shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation.” Notice that Jesus is talking about “works” and “actions” and not “words (honoring God with the lips, Is 29:13, Mt 15:8, Mk 7:6).” Again, the Lord’s concerns are that we have done the will of God (Mt 7:21-23). Psalms 73:11, “And they say, How doth God know? and is there knowledge in the most High?” Christ also tells us very plainly in His Word: “I know thy works (Rev 2:2, 9, 13, 19, 3:1, 8, 15)!” He that created all things KNOWS (Job 11:11). Psalms 44:21, “Shall not God search this out? for he knoweth the secrets of the heart.” The Lord will reveal the secrets of the heart. Luke 8:17, “For nothing is secret, that shall not be made manifest; neither any thing hid, that shall not be known and come abroad (also Mt 10:26, Mk 4:22, Lk 12:2).” Proverbs 24:12, “If thou sayest, Behold, we knew it not; doth not he that pondereth the heart consider it? and he that keepeth thy soul, doth not he know it? and shall not he render to every man according to his works?” The Lord will come, who both will bring to light the hidden things of darkness, and will make manifest the counsels of the hearts (1 Cor 4:5).

Jesus is Coming to Render Judgment

Jesus smites the nations (makes war) with the twoedged sword that proceedeth out of His mouth because scripture is clear that the majority of men on earth have rejected Him (Nah 1:3, Zeph 1:17). Isaiah 66:18, “For I know their works and their thoughts: it shall come, that I will gather all nations and tongues; and they shall come, and see my glory.” When Christ comes all the tribes of the earth mourn and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of Him (Mt 24:30, Rev 1:7). Many men will seek to hide (Rev 6:16). Revelation 11:18, “And the nations were angry, and thy wrath is come, and the time of the dead, that they should be judged, and that thou shouldest give reward unto thy servants the prophets, and to the saints, and them that fear thy name, small and great; and shouldest destroy them which destroy the earth.” He that rejects Christ’s Words will come into God’s condemnation which is “thou shalt surely die (Gen 2:17).” He that hath rejected Christ’s Words will be rejected of God! Woe!

These are they that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ (2 Thess 1:8, 1 Pt 4:17). 2 Thessalonians 1:7-9, “…The Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels, In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ: Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power.” Recall from above (Rev 19:11-16, color coded blue) that: “His eyes were as a flame of fire.” Revelation 19:21, “And the remnant were slain with the sword of him that sat upon the horse, which sword proceeded out of his mouth: and all the fowls were filled with their flesh.” Hebrews 10:30-31, “For we know him that hath said, Vengeance belongeth unto me, I will recompense, saith the Lord. And again, The Lord shall judge his people. It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.”

To recompense is to return an equivalent. This is to reap what has been sown. Galatians 6:7-8, “Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting.” You shall receive for what has been done in the body during your time on this earth whether it be good or bad (2 Cor 5:10).

Judgment begins in the Lord’s House

Scriptures reveal: 1 Peter 4:17, “For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God?” Ezekiel 34:17, “And as for you, O my flock, thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I judge between cattle and cattle, between the rams and the he goats (also Ez 34:30-31).” – Behold, I, even I, will judge between the fat cattle and between the lean cattle (Ez 34:20).

In the book of Revelation, Jesus addresses the seven churches. These are men who profess belief in Christ. In each case Jesus tells them He knows their works. The Lord first points out their merits. Christ then addresses their faults and they are told to repent and to overcome (Rev 2:5, 7, 11, 16-17, 22, 25-26, 3:2, 5, 11, 19, 21). Christ tells them what will happen if they do not repent and what will happen if they do repent. Those who repent (turn to God fully and forsake their faults) and overcome (only as by the Holy Spirit) will share in Christ’s victory as related in Rev 19:11-16 above (color coded blue). Let us consider this more fully:

Jesus has a message for all (as told to the churches – professed believers): “These things saith he which hath the sharp sword with two edges; I know thy works (Rev 2:12-13).” Jesus truly does know our works – for He discerns the thoughts and intents of our hearts – He trieth the reins of the heart – He searches out the matter. Therefore Christ says: Revelation 2:16, “Repent; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will fight against them with the sword of my mouth.” In other words, those who do not fully obey are among the ones who reject His Words and shall receive condemnation. To be “fought against” means that you are an enemy of God – you are not found in truth which is Christ’s Word. You must overcome that which opposes God or be overcome by God.

Christ later states: Revelation 2:17, “He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the hidden manna, and will give him a white stone, and in the stone a new name written, which no man knoweth saving he that receiveth it.” AND “I will write upon him my new name (Rev 3:12).” Now consider in the verses above (Rev 19:11-16, color coded blue) that Jesus also has a name written, that no man knew, but He himself. Jesus overcame and we must also overcome (Jn 16:33). Revelation 3:21, “To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne.” Christ hath prevailed (overcome) and is worthy (Rev 5:5, 12). We must now overcome (through Jesus as led of His Holy Ghost, Rm 8:14). Jesus sat in the Father’s throne and we shall sit with Christ in His throne. Jesus received a new name and we will receive a new name. We are to be as Christ, and we shall partake of His victory. The Lord says: Revelation 21:7, “He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son.”

It was prophesied of Jesus: Psalms 2:9, “Thou shalt break them with a rod of iron; thou shalt dash them in pieces like a potter’s vessel.” Christ tells His followers: Revelation 2:26-27, “And he that overcometh, and keepeth my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations: And he shall rule them with a rod of iron; as the vessels of a potter shall they be broken to shivers: even as I received of my Father.” Again, we note from the scriptures above (Rev 19:11-16, color coded blue) that Jesus shall rule the nations with a rod of iron (Rev 12:5). Therefore we can conclude: Jesus will rule the nations with a rod of iron and we, who keep Christ’s gospel (His works), shall also rule the nations with a rod of iron with Him.

Also note from the above scriptures (Rev 19:11-16, color coded blueWe are to hold that fast which thou hast, that no man take thy crown (Rev 3:11).) that Jesus is Faithful and has many crowns with a vesture dipped in blood – signifying His faithfulness unto death. Jesus tells us: “be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life (Rev 2:10).” Revelation 12:11, “And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death.” This “death” can have two meanings: 1) physical death and/or 2) death to the old man (nature); forsaking the lusts and desires of the flesh – being “born again” with the nature of God and walking therein. Losing your life for Christ’s name sake and the gospel’s (Mk 8:35, also Mt 10:39, 16:25, Lk 9:24, 17:33, Jn 12:25).

Christ’s armies follow Him on white horses and are clothed in fine linen, white and clean (Rev 19:14, color coded blue) – they that are with him are called, and chosen, and faithful (Rev 17:14). Jesus tells us: Revelation 3:5, “He that overcometh, the same shall be clothed in white raiment; and I will not blot out his name out of the book of life, but I will confess his name before my Father, and before his angels.” Jesus once said: Matthew 10:32-33, “Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven. But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven.” AND Luke 12:8-9, “Also I say unto you, Whosoever shall confess me before men, him shall the Son of man also confess before the angels of God: But he that denieth me before men shall be denied before the angels of God.”

Please consider what Jesus says to those who profess to believe in Him, but are not fully following Him. If they do not repent and overcome He syas: 1) I will come unto thee quickly, and will remove thy candlestick out of his place, except thou repent (Rev 2:5); 2) I will fight against them with the sword of His mouth (Rev 2:16); 3) I will cast thee into great tribulation (Rev 2:22); 4) I will blot out his name out of the book of life (Rev 3:5); 5) Hold fast that no man take thy crown (of life, Rev 3:11); and 6) I will spue (vomit) thee out of my mouth. What this is saying is that if you are not overcoming sin and this world (through the Holy Spirit Christ has given us, 1 Jn 5:4-5), then you are an enemy of Christ and will be judged accordingly. Therefore: Revelation 3:22, “He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches.” If Christ judges His own thus, then what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God?

According to their Works

Jesus said: John 5:36, “But I have greater witness than that of John: for the works which the Father hath given me to finish, the same works that I do, bear witness of me, that the Father hath sent me (also Jn 10:25-38).” We also have a work to do and someone asked Jesus what that work was: John 6:28-29, “Then said they unto him, What shall we do, that we might work the works of God? Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent.” Jesus is not talking about some superficial mental agreement or understanding of some biblical facts. He is talking about fully “receiving” His Word and “applying” it to every aspect of your life (hearing, receiving and doing the Word). Luke 8:15, “But that on the good ground are they, which in an honest and good heart, having heard the word, keep it, and bring forth fruit with patience.” These have kept the Word of His patience (Rev 3:10).

What is the Word of His patience? Revelation 14:12, “Here is the patience of the saints: here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus.” Jesus “knows” your works – – – and they were judged every man according to their works (Rev 20:12-13). He discerns the very thoughts and intents of your heart. This is not talking about adding Jesus to “your” life, but rather dying to your life to be found in Christ. Repent and overcome! Blessed is he that watcheth, and keepeth his garments, lest he walk naked, and they see his shame (Rev 16:15). Nothing will be secret or hid (Mk 4:22, Lk 8:17)!!!

In conclusion: Revelation 15:4, “Who shall not fear thee, O Lord, and glorify thy name? for thou only art holy: for all nations shall come and worship before thee; for thy judgments are made manifest.” Revelation 19:5, “And a voice came out of the throne, saying, Praise our God, all ye his servants, and ye that fear him, both small and great.” Revelation 22:12, “And, behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be.”

Additional Consideration

Death is the great leveler! Death does not discriminate and comes to all men – rich, famous, poor, beggar, wise, foolish, makes no difference. On earth, men guided by the principles of the world fight to gain place, position, possessions and wealth. Psalms 49:17, “For when he dieth he shall carry nothing away: his glory shall not descend after him.” AND Ecclesiastes 5:15, “As he came forth of his mother’s womb, naked shall he return to go as he came, and shall take nothing of his labour, which he may carry away in his hand.” AND 1 Timothy 6:7, “For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out.”

Job also noted when he had lost his wealth: Job 1:21, “And said, Naked came I out of my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return thither: the LORD gave, and the LORD hath taken away; blessed be the name of the LORD.” Death makes all men equal once again. The only thing that will matter after death is what God considers worthwhile. That which is highly esteemed among men is abomination in the sight of God (Lk 16:15). God is not interested in your wealth, possessions, notoriety or position. 1 John 2:16-17, “For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.”

Every man will be judged according to their works. Were your works of the flesh or the Spirit? Did you live by God’s commandments or the desires of your flesh? Did you love the Lord your God with all your heart, mind, soul and strength, or were there other priorities? Did you love your neighbor? – or trample him under foot? Riches will not save, but they most likely will destroy (Ez 7:19, Zeph 1:18, Js 5:3). Consider what Jesus said: Matthew 19:23-24, “Then said Jesus unto his disciples, Verily I say unto you, That a rich man shall hardly enter into the kingdom of heaven. And again I say unto you, It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God (also Mk 10:23-27, Lk 18:24-27).”

Why is it so hard for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of heaven? The reason is because they trust in their riches (Mk 10:24). They love their money and the things it brings them. They walk in pride which is to exalt self through the lusts and desires of the flesh. Those who are prideful and self seeking will not enter into the kingdom of God. Those who place other things ahead of God shall not enter into His kingdom.

At the Great Judgment, there will be no powerful, mighty or influential people. Death makes all men equal. Many once great men will be cast down. Obadiah 1:4, “Though thou exalt thyself as the eagle, and though thou set thy nest among the stars, thence will I bring thee down, saith the LORD.” AND Every one that is proud and lofty, and upon every one that is lifted up; and he shall be brought low (Is 2:12). Those humble men who were faithful to Christ will be exalted. 1 Peter 5:6, “Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time.” The humble in this life will become the powerful in eternity as they rule and reign with Christ (2 Tim 2:12, Rev 5:10, 22:5).

Beware: The Lord knows your works and He says: Isaiah 13:11, “And I will punish the world for their evil, and the wicked for their iniquity; and I will cause the arrogancy of the proud to cease, and will lay low the haughtiness of the terrible.” Therefore: Lamentations 3:40, “Let us search and try our ways, and turn again to the LORD.”

This message has also been incorporated into the more comprehensive (33 pages) writing titled, “Be Merciful.

The author periodically writes other articles, tracts and books as the Lord puts them on his heart. These are offered free of charge and may be obtained by writing: David D. Neal, 209 Cedar Pond Dr., Madison, Al. 35757

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