How to Enter the Kingdom of God
"Repent, for the kingdom of God is at hand," declared John the Baptist (Matt. 3:2). Then, Jesus Christ came with the same message (Matt. 4:17). Later, He instructed His disciples to proclaim the same message - the one and only true message of Jesus Christ (Matt. 10:7).
What is that complete message? It is about the kingdom of heaven. What about it? It is at hand, right now, at this moment. How do you get into the kingdom of heaven? Repent! Change! Turn around! Stop living one way and start living another.
The Bible says Satan is the god of this world and his subjects are those who are held captive to do his will (2 Cor. 4:4; John 12:31; 2 Tim. 2:26). Jesus says that only those who do the Will of His Father will be freed from Satan’s control and enter the kingdom of heaven (Rom. 16:20; Matt. 7:21). He says this kingdom is located within you - in your heart - and that you enter it by practicing righteousness for Him daily (Luke 17:21; Matt. 6:1).
Christ also says your righteousness must surpass the hypocritical stage of the scribes and Pharisees (Matt. 5:20). You must eventually do God’s Will from your heart (Eph. 6:6). No wonder Luke 16:16 says you must force your way into the kingdom. Jesus Christ says, "Strive [push yourself] to enter by the narrow door" (Luke 13:24). He says, "By your perseverance, you will win your souls" (Luke 21:19, 1977 NASB).
Who is there to harm you if you prove zealous for good deeds? (1 Peter 3:13). God is pleased with such sacrifices as practicing righteousness, doing good deeds and sharing what you have with others (Heb. 13:16; Luke 14:13). The Bible says the one who does good is of God and is righteous (3 John 11; 1 John 3:7).
Let us not grow weary of doing good, because this is the central message of the kingdom of heaven (Gal. 6:9; 2 Thess. 3:13; Rom. 6:13). Overcoming our evil natures by doing good for God is the narrow gate by which we enter the kingdom of God (Rom. 12:21; Gen. 8:21; Prov. 14:12; Eph. 2:1-3). We must seek first His kingdom by practicing His righteousness in our daily lives (Matt. 6:33). Then God will begin to bless us and change our ways to conform to His Ways (Eph. 5:1). This is the way to enter the good life that God has waiting for all who will repent and be servants of others.