It is impossible to be righteous before God with an unrighteous mindset toward His Word.
Jesus describes a righteous mindset with these words: “Do not think that I came to destroy the Law or the Prophets. I did not come to destroy but to fulfill. For assuredly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, one jot or one tittle will by no means pass from the law till all is fulfilled. Whoever therefore breaks one of the least of these commandments, and teaches men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever does and teaches them, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven. For I say to you, that unless your righteousness exceeds the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven” (Matthew 5:17-20).
As noted in the last four blogs, a correct mindset towards the Scriptures includes an accurate recognition of their contents, a submissive reverence for their authority, a clear understanding of their permanence, and a solemn appreciation of their holiness.
It also includes a determined obedience to all their commands.
Jesus mentions two distinctly different attitudes about obedience.
The Pharisees’ attitude of “selective obedience” is unacceptable. If the only Bible commands you obey are the ones you believe are essential, then you are not obeying God, you’re obeying self. This is not how faith in God acts. The righteousness which results from “selective obedience” will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven.
The righteous mindset of faith is determined to obey all God’s commands—the least as well as the greatest. It shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven, for in God’s eyes “he who is faithful in what is least is faithful also in much” (Luke 16:10).
Jesus had the mindset of determined obedience to all God’s commands. It was this mindset which prompted Him to be obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross (Philippians 2:8). It was this mindset which God highly exalted when He gave Jesus a name above every name (Philippians 2:9). It is this mindset which is essential to entering and remaining in the kingdom of heaven.