Our Father welcomes us into His presence, but not without important prerequisites.
"Who may ascend into the hill of the Lord? And who may stand in His holy place? He who has clean hands and a pure heart, Who has not lifted up his soul to falsehood And has not sworn deceitfully. He shall receive a blessing from the Lord And righteousness from the God of his salvation." (Psalm 24.3-5)
Clean hands. We can't come to God's dinner table with hands dirty from sinful deeds.
A pure heart. "Blessed are the pure in heart for they shall see God." (Matthew 5.8) We cannot come to Him with divided loyalty and affection.
Who has not lifted up his soul to falsehood And has not sworn deceitfully. "make no oath at all, either by heaven, for it is the throne of God, or by the earth, for it is the footstool of His feet, or by Jerusalem, for it is the city of the great king ... let your statement be, 'Yes, yes' or 'No, no'; anything beyond these is of evil." (Matthew 5.34-35,37) No grand "I-swear-to-God" statements and/or promises. Simple, pure integrity in word and deed.
None of us come to our Father sinless and pure of our own right (Romans 3.10-12). We can only come before Him in the purity of His Son (Hebrews 10.19-22). But, under the covering of Christ's pure sacrifice God expects us to live sincerely and consistently, a lifestyle consistent with gratitude for His grace.
It's great to have a desire to be in fellowship with our Father, but it must be on His terms. In so doing we are promised that we "shall receive a blessing from the Lord And righteousness from the God of his salvation." Amen.
©Steve Taylor, 2018 --Used by permission