Obedience, the Chief Christian Characteristic

In my study for Matthew 7:21-23, I came across the following words (sobering thoughts) from D.A. Carson:

No man enters the kingdom because of his obedience; but it is equally true that no man enters the kingdom who is not obedient. It is true that men are saved by God’s grace through faith in Christ; but it is equally true that God’s grace in a man’s life inevitably results in obedience. Any other view of grace cheapens grace, and turns it into something unrecognizable. Cheap grace preaches forgiveness without repentance, church membership without rigorous church discipline, discipleship without obedience, blessing without persecution, joy without righteousness, results without obedience. In the entire history of the church, has there ever been another generation with so many nominal Christians and so few real (i.e., obedient) ones? And where nominal Christianity is compounded by spectacular profession, it is especially likely to manufacture its own false assurance.

D.A. Carson, Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount and His Confrontation with the World (Toronto: Global Christian Publishers, 2001), 139-40.

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