Message Magazine’s Online Devotional for Thursday, May 19, 2016
Today’s Scripture Focus: Matthew 7:1-5
We are focusing on sin recovery principle number four of 12: “We are submitting to an honest self-inventory as the Holy Spirit makes us more aware.”
Spoiler alert! I am going to call somebody out today in the international blogosphere, and through all the major podcasting channels where this post will be distributed. You know who you are. I hope you are ready! A man’s gotta do what a man’s gotta do.
Have you ever said, when you learned of some evil a person did, “I would NEVER do that”? Was there ever a crime you heard about on the news that was so heinous you could hardly sleep? Have you heard people use profanities in ways you have never heard and wondered just how many ways one could say a bad word? How do you feel about genocide? What are your thoughts on homicide? Are you a child trafficking advocate? What is your stance on domestic violence?
I would venture to guess that most who are reading and listening to today’s post would be appalled by the few evil acts I referenced even if they occurred in the world as a whole, and rightly so. I am fairly certain most would be even more appalled if these and other atrocities were committed in the name of Christ, and rightly so!
Let me let you in on a little-known secret: “For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all. For he that said, Do not commit adultery, said also, Do not kill. Now if thou commit no adultery, yet if thou kill, thou art become a transgressor of the law. So speak ye, and so do, as they that shall be judged by the law of liberty” (James 2:10–12).
This is one of the reasons Jesus said, “Judge not, that ye be not judged. For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again. And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother’s eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye? Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold, a beam is in thine own eye? Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother’s eye” (Matthew 7:1–5).
OK, so I lied to you in the opener. I said I would be calling somebody out because of your hypocrisy. However, I have one problem: If I call you a hypocrite while I am still sinning, and thereby breaking all of the commandments just like a murderer, I would be one too. So how ‘bout we who recognize our hypocrisy confess the fact to the only One who can change us and help each other become honest, loving children of God? Then, if we do see that our friends, brothers, and sisters need to make life adjustments to conform to God’s will, we can share our testimonies. We can say that we know what it’s like to kill, gossip, lie, be abusive, have perverted thoughts, etc. and submit this all to our God for our transformation in the Spirit.
If I call anybody out today, it will be me.