When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on his glorious throne. Before him will be gathered all the nations, and he will separate people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. (Matthew 25)
In the Name + of Jesus. Amen. "Making the cut." When you tried out for the team or choir. "Making the cut." You try your best. Show what you can do to be a part of the team. Roll out the resume for that new job. "Making the cut." Is this what are Lord is teaching us? Is this the final exam before God? To do enough for Jesus and get the everlasting kingdom?
NO! Salvation is a gift full and free for Christ’s sake. The sheep are in Christ. The sheep believe God's Holy Word. The sheep believe in Jesus. The sheep hear his (Jesus’) voice, and he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out..... I came that they may have life and have it abundantly. I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. (John 10)
Goats are rebellious. They refuse to listen. Goats reject Christ and His Word. Stubborn goats living in unbelief. Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. (Matthew 25)
You are not a goat. You belong to Christ Jesus. You are in Christ and Christ is in you. You are the redeemed people of God purchased with the blood of Christ.
Not with perishable things such as silver or gold, but with the precious blood of Christ, like that of a lamb without blemish or spot. (1 Peter 1)
In Holy Baptism you have been washed in the blood of the Lamb. In the Lord's Supper, Christ’s Body and Blood are given to feed the Sheep with forgiveness. The faith the Lord has blessed you with is strengthened to boldly confess Christ before the world. The King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. (Matt. 25)
The Sheep do good works living by faith. You belong to Christ. Jesus is working in you and through you for the good of your neighbor. The works that the sheep do are NOT earning heaven. Rather this is faith in action: giving, serving, feeding, visiting and clothing on behalf of your neighbor. Jesus declares, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.’
We are living in the Last Days. For you, my Sheep, continue in the faith by the Living Word of God. I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Henceforth there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will award to me on that day, and not only to me but also to all who have loved his appearing. (2 Timothy 4)
Sheep who abide in Christ. In the Name + of Jesus. Amen.
Have No Fear, Little Flock LSB 735:1
Have no fear, little flock;
Have no fear, little flock,
For the Father has chosen
To give you the Kingdom;
Have no fear, little flock!