There is a flaw that all mankind possesses.
For some, this flaw is more pronounced than it is for others; but the older I get and the more I associate with people, the more I see this flaw in both them and in me.
The flaw is this:
For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God, being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, whom God has set forth to be a propitiation through faith, in His blood, for a demonstration of His righteousness, because in His forbearance God had passed over the sins previously committed, to prove His righteousness at this present time so that He might be just and be the justifier of him who has faith in Jesus.
Where is boasting then? It is excluded. By what law? Of works? No, but by the law of faith (Rom. 3:23-27).
The moment I find something that works for me (a health benefit, an exercise program, a personal conviction to abstain from something, a financial investment, a work-from-home opportunity), everyone else must do it, and those who don't are less fortunate than I am.
I don't know if it is the abundance of multi-level-marketing opportunities out there (and I am not against them at all) that operate on the premise of you encouraging friends and family to join you in your venture, or if it is that social media enables us to know a wider audience of people than before...
it just seems that this part of human nature is more prevalent now than before.
But it's always been there—and we know that because Paul addressed it in the first five chapters of Romans.
He opens the book of Romans by laying the foundation for exposing this human flaw by first addressing the utter wickedness of those who refused to glorify God as God.
He says that God gave them over to their wickedness and goes on to list 25 deeds that span all areas of sin.
And just about the time when you would find yourself nodding, giving a side-eye to that picture of the Hollywood star in the newspaper lying next to you on the table, Paul says this:
who know the righteous requirement of God, that those who commit such things are worthy of death. They not only do them, but also give hearty approval to those who practice them.
Therefore you are without excuse, O man, whoever you are who judges, for when you judge another, you condemn yourself, for you who judge do the same things. But we know that the judgment of God is according to truth against those who commit such things. Do you think, O man, who judges those who do such things, and who does the same thing, that you will escape the judgment of God? (Rom. 1:32 – 2:3).
Paul doesn't mince words at all; he gets right to the point.
Just when you think you're somehow better than that girl selling herself on the corner, better than Harvey Weinstein, better than Matt Lauer, better than the guy who's done too much heroin ...don't get too comfortable there!
As a matter of fact, if you find yourself in the seat of self-righteousness, you had better be uncomfortable, because no one escapes the judgment of God.
3 Reasons Christians Aren't Better Than Everyone Else
1. We still break the law.
Just because you are saved doesn't mean you are perfect.
Yes, Jesus' blood justifies us, making us just as if we've never sinned. But this is a miraculous work of God in our hearts, this has nothing to do with how good we are or how well we keep God's law.
Because let's face it, on our own, there is no way we could even get through a day without breaking one of the Ten Commandments.
And James says that if you break one of them, you've broken the whole Law.
Paul reminds us that it wasn't our own awesome-ness that so blew God away that He decided to save us, it was the goodness of God that lead us to repentance.
And if we're not careful, we will come under judgement ourselves.
2. We approve of those who habitually break God's Law.
We must ask ourselves, "In the midst of all of these allegations coming out in the #MeToo movement, do I have a habit of watching movies that portray violence, show nudity, use sexual innuendo and glorify immorality, adultery, perversion and homosexuality?"
If the answer is yes, then we are approving of those who sin.
This approval of sin hardens our hearts, and Paul says that because of this, we are inexcusable and God will "render to each according to his conduct" (2 Chron. 6:30b).
This means He will give us what we're owed. That's a scary thought!
Grace has been given to us freely, but we must not misuse it. We must not mistreat that which was so costly. That same God who daily gives us unlimited grace paid for that grace by the blood of His Son.
It was because of sin that He shed His blood.
That same sin that we passively participate in by our approval, the approval we give by allowing ourselves to be entertained by its portrayal.
3. There is no partiality with God.
You cannot buy God's approval with how good you are, how rich you are, what a great Christian you are, what spiritual gifts you possess, whether you speak in tongues or not—not even if you are a well-known Christian speaker or televangelist.
None of this impresses God.
You will still be rewarded eternal life or the indignation of God.
We are all judged equally: by the blood of Jesus or by our refusal to glorify Him as God. Money, power, our personal moral code, our good Christian deeds, our notoriety—none of this will influence God's hand on that day.
The same grace that reached Billy Graham reaches down into San Quentin to save the worst sinner.
We're all equally lost and sentenced to hell without God's grace.
Perhaps without God you wouldn't be selling yourself on some corner or strung out on meth in some drug house, but you'd still be lost.
You'd still be sentenced to hell.
We're all equally without hope in this world apart from God's grace!
Rosilind Jukic, a Pacific Northwest native, is a missionary married to her Bosnian hero. Together they live in Croatia with their two active boys, where she enjoys fruity candles, good coffee and a hot cup of herbal tea on a blustery fall evening. Her passion for writing led her to author her best-selling book The Missional Handbook. At A Little R & R she encourages women to find contentment in what God created them to be. You can also find her at Missional Call where she shares her passion for local and global missions. You can follow her on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Google +.
This article originally appeared at rosilindjukic.com.
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