#1 - How to Go to Heaven - Matthew 7:13-29

Session #1 - How to Go to Heaven 

Matthew 7:13-29

 

Introduction

  1. At the end of the most famous sermon ever given (The Sermon on the Mount) Jesus tells us HOW to actually make it to heaven.
  2. There is NO more important teaching anywhere than Jesus' teaching in this passage (Matthew 7:13-29) on how to go to heaven.
  3. The page numbers are for the paperback "How to Find God" New Testament NLT that can be purchased for $3 apiece when purchased by the case from biblesatcost.com.
  4. Go slow and carefully consider each verse.  If need be, meet twice to complete this session.
  5. The questions are based on the NLT (New Living Translation) so in the rare case when the answer isn't clear look up the verse in the NLT.

 

Take the Difficult Road to Heaven - Matthew 7:13-14

  1. Matthew 7:13-14 (pg 10).
    1. How many people are going to hell?  
    2. How many people are going to heaven? 
    3. Both ways say they go to heaven.  Where does Jesus say most people who think they are going to heaven are going? (many vs. few)
    4. What are the two descriptions in v14 that the way to heaven is described? 
    5. The next verse describes the effort required to go to heaven.
  2. Luke 13:23-24  (pg 87)
    1. How much effort must we take to enter God's Kingdom (heaven) (go to heaven)?  
  3. Summary of Matthew 7:13-14:
    1. Return back to Matthew 7:13 (pg 10).  Jesus says most people are going to hell because they refuse to take and stay on the difficult road.
    2. In the next 2 paragraphs in Matthew 7 Jesus explains how to take the difficult road to heaven:

 

How?

 

(1) Keep Believing Jesus' teachings - Matthew 7:15-20

  1. Matthew 7:15-20 (pg 10).
    1. In v15 what are we commanded to do? (beware means to watch out for) 
    2. False prophets teach false truths (including to take the easy and false way to heaven). 
    3. In v16 how can we tell if we or others are faking it and are a false follower of Jesus?
    4. Fruit is a changed life characterized by living the Sermon on the Mount.
    5. In v19 what happens to those who don’t have good fruit? 
    6. The next 3 verses describe people who did not watch out for false prophets and the the horrible end they have.
  2. Galatians 1:6-8 (pg 231) 
    1. Who did the Galatians turn away from in v6? 
    2. In v7 why did they turn away? 
    3. In v8 what will happen to those who teach a false Good News (Gospel)? 
      1. Does this include all the TV preachers that say if you give them money God will give you much more money?
    4. The next verse describes the Good News (Gospel) they were taught and believed for a while.
  3. Galatians 2:16 (pg 233) 
    1. How is one made right with God? 
    2. Can one ever be made right with God by obeying the law? 
    3. The next verse describes what happens to those who stop relying on believing in Jesus Christ and his death on the cross to make themselves right with God..
  4. Galatians 5:4 (pg 235) 
    1. What happens to those who try to make themselves right with God by keeping the law? 
    2. That is why false prophets are so deadly because what we believe determines where we go.
    3. In the next verse Jesus describes what happens to those who don't believe him.
  5. John 8:24 (pg 114) 
    1. What happens to those who don't believe the claims Jesus made about himself?
    2. What happens to those who die in their sins? 
    3. Next week we'll read what Jesus said we must believe about him.
    4. In the next verse God tells us how to protect ourselves.
  6. 1 Tim 4:16 (pg 271) 
    1. What happens if we don't stay true to what is right? 
    2. In the beginning of the verse how can we stay true? 
    3. The next verse shows how to keep a close watch.
  7. Acts 17:11  (pg 159) 
    1. How do we determine if a teaching we've been told agrees with Jesus? 
  8. Summary of Matthew 7:15-20:
    1. How would you summarize what Jesus wants us to do?
    2. What will happen to those who don't actively watch out for false followers and teachings?
    3. The difficult road to heaven requires us to continue to believe ONLY Jesus' teachings until we die.  The verses we went over shows us how to do that. 
    4. Which verse in this section was the most important to you?

 

(2) Keep Serving Jesus as Lord- Matthew 7:21-23

  1. Matthew 7:21-23 (pg 10).
    1. In v22 what did these people call Jesus?
    2. In v22 what did they do in Jesus' name?
    3. Did these people believe Jesus was God? (yes, they did miracles in his name and were not surprised to see him in heaven)
    4. In v23 did these people (who called Jesus Lord, did works in his name and believed in him) go to heaven or hell?
    5. In v21 who are the only ones who will go to heaven?
    6. The next verse shows what those who call him Lord must do. 
  2. Luke 6:46 (pg 73) 
    1. According to Jesus what must you do if you call him Lord?  
    2. In the next verse Jesus says who we are ONLY to serve.
  3. Matthew 4:10 (pg 4) 
    1. Who is the only person we are to serve?  
    2. Are we sinning if we serve our desires instead of God?
    3. The next verse let’s us know who we are serving. 
  4. Matthew 6:31-33  (pg 9) 
    1. If God is our master (see v24) what must NOT be dominating our thoughts and time (see v31-32)? 
    2. What must be dominating our thoughts and time (see v33)?
    3. If we "Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously" what does God promise to do? 
    4. Do you agree with this statement "If the goal of your life is not the advancement of the Kingdom of God through making disciples (Matt 28:19-20) and to live in the way God instructs us to do then God does not necessarily have to provide everything, He may withhold some things to discipline us". 
    5. This next verse is probably the best verse on how to make Jesus your Lord and Master.
  5. Mark 8:34-36 (pg 50)
    1. In v34 what 3 things MUST one do to become a follower/disciple of Jesus?
    2. What do each of those 3 mean?
      1. Give up your own way is how one denies themselves so one can follow Jesus. 
      2. Take up your cross means to be willing to suffer for following Jesus.
      3. Follow me means to follow all of Jesus teachings.
      4. Can one truly follow Jesus if they don't give up their own way and pick up your cross?
    3. What is verse 35 saying?
    4. In v35, what person and what cause are we to give up our lives for?
    5. If we don't give up our lives for Jesus and the Gospel what will happen to our souls in v36?
    6. Does Mark 8:34-35 explain what it means to have Jesus as your Lord and Master?
    7. This is what was missing for the people in Matthew 7:21-23.  They called Jesus Lord but didn't follow his commands nor serve him as their master.
    8. What do you need to stop doing so you'll have time to give up your life for Jesus and spread the Gospel?
  6. Summary of Matthew 7:21-24:
    1. How would you summarize what Jesus wants us to do?
    2. What happens to those who don't have Jesus as their real Lord (keep serving Jesus as Lord)?
    3. The difficult road requires us to stop serving ourselves and to actually serve Jesus as our Lord.
    4. Which verse in this section do you want to remember and do the most?
    5. The next paragraph is crucial because it is how we can keep believing and serving Jesus as Lord.

 

How to keep true belief and real lordship?  By:

 

Keep daily hearing and daily doing Jesus' Teachings - Matthew 7:24-27 

  1. Matthew 7:24-27 (pg 10).
    1. Does everyone, including Christians who build on the rock, experience storms?
    2. What do we need to do to survive these storms (including the final storm on Judgement Day, v22)?
    3. In v24 what two things does Jesus say one must do to build on the rock?
    4. What does Jesus say will happen to those who don't obey his teaching?
    5. We build a little bit every day.  Yesterday did you build more on the rock or the sand?
    6. In the next verse Jesus tells us how many of his commands we need to obey.
  2. Matthew 28:18-20 (pg 38) 
    1. How many of Jesus' commands are we to obey?
    2. How many of Jesus' commands are we to teach? 
    3. In the next verse Jesus tells us what we should be living on. 
  3. Matthew 4:4 (pg 3) 
    1. How many of God's words did Jesus say we must live on?
    2. Are you willing to learn EVERY word and then live by EVERY word that comes from the mouth of God?
    3. The next verse shows some of the wonderful results of obedience.
  4. John 15:10-11 (pg 125) 
    1. In v10 what do you need to do to experience God’s love (which includes his care and protection)?  
    2. How did Jesus remain in God's love?
    3. In v11 what does Jesus also want us to experience as a result of our obedience?
    4. The next verse shows us what is at stake.
  5. Matthew 18:8-9 (pg 24) 
    1. In v8 what did Jesus tell his disciples to do so that they don't get thrown into eternal fire (hell).
    2. Do you agree with this statement  “Jesus used hyperbole (which means exaggerated statements not meant to be taken literally) to impress on us that we must do EVERYTHING we can to not sin.”
    3. The third session goes over how to win your battle against sinning.
    4. In the next verse Jesus tells us the 4 responses to the Good News (the Gospel). 
  6. Mark 4:1-9, 13-20  (pg 42-43)
    1. The rocky soil and the thorns in v16-19 show 4 reasons that prevent people from taking the difficult road to heaven. 
    2. For the seed on rocky soil, in the first part of v17 what is the reason that will keep them from taking the difficult road?
    3. In the 2nd part of v17 what happens to those who don't have deep roots in God's word?
    4. In the parallel passage in Luke 8:13 Luke adds "they believe for a while, then they fall away when ..." so in addition to false prophets causing people to stop believing it's also not having a deep root in God's word that can withstand problems, persecution, and temptation (in Luke).
    5. For the seed among the thorns In v18-19 what are the other three reasons that will prevent people from staying on the difficult road?  
    6. In v20 what are 3 characteristics of the people who go to heaven?
    7. In addition to hearing God's word they did something else with God's word that only the good soil people did.  What did they do?  (accept God's word)
    8. Is not bearing fruit a sign that one is not on the difficult road?
    9. Do you agree with this statement? "To accept God's word is to both learn it and let it go deep in your life and change you as you obey it"?
    10. In the next verse Jesus tells us what the goal of our lives should be.
  7. Summary of Matthew 7:24-27:
    1. How would you summarize what Jesus wants us to do?
    2. What will happen to those who don't build their house on the rock by obeying Jesus' teachings?
    3. Which verse in this section do you want to remember and do the most?
  8.  Conclusion
    1. How To Go To Heaven?  
    2. Take the Difficult Road to Heaven (Repent & Believe)
    3. How to Take and Stay on the Difficult Road to Heaven
      1. Keep BELIEVING Jesus' Teachings 
      2. Keep SERVING Jesus as Lord
    4. How to keep true belief and real lordship?
      • Keep OBEYING All of Jesus' Teachings
    5. What happens if you stop doing even one of these three?
    6. We stay on the difficult road to heaven by growing in our belief and service to Jesus by learning and obeying ALL of Jesus' teachings.  In other words living a life of repentance and belief (actually following Jesus, not just claiming to follow Jesus).
    7. Can you commit to spending 10 minutes a day studying these verses and asking God to help you to follow them better?
    8. Put the Table of Contents page (not this page) on your phone's home screen so you can easily access the Sermon on the Mount Study. 

      Apple: View that page in the Safari browser, then press the share icon, select "Add to Home Screen", and name it "Sermon Mt".

      Android: View that page in the Chrome browser, then press the 3 horizontal lines, select "Add page to", select "Home Screen", and name it "Sermon Mt".

    9. Who do you know that needs to hear this message on how to go to heaven?  Can you share it with each of them this week?  (if more than 2 it might take more than a week).

 

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