A Question I Was Asked:

Will Harlots Enter the Kingdom or Won't They?




Here is a recent qustion which came to my computer desk:



In Matt. 21:31 Jesus says: "Verily I say unto you, That the publicans and the harlots go into the kingdom of God before you"


Yet in 1 Cor. 6:9-10, Paul says,

"Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolators, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind...shall inherit the kingdom of God"


Whether or not harlots will enter the kingdom of God appears to be in dispute. How can this be harmonized?



My response:


First of all, the key to understanding Matthew 21:31 is in the very next verse: verse 32. The tax collectors and prostitutes repented of their sins, but the religious leaders did not. So repentance must occur before one enters the kingdom of heaven.

You continue:


"Yet in 1 Cor. 6:9-10, Paul says "Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolators, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind...shall inherit the kingdom of God"


This statement by Paul is also true, he was talking about people who refused to repent. Obviously, people cannot enter the kingdom of heaven in the sinful state of mind of idolators, fornicators etc., People have to turn from sin and accept Christ. It does not mean that people are then absolutely perfect and that God requires absolute perfection else nobody could ever enter heaven - it is talking about a change of life direction from the ways of the world to the ways of God.


There is no contradiction anywhere here. Hope this helps.

Robin A. Brace, 2006.



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