As I awoke early this morning, God convicted me of a painful reality. Though I try to put on a good act, my daily priorities tell another story. When I can’t even muster a few moments with God on the Sabbath, its a sign my heart is not in the right place. In fact, my actions resemble King Saul in 1 Samuel 15:10-16, making things up as I go without following the Lord’s commands.
God didn’t send me a prophet like Samuel to reject me. Rather, God used a nightmare to unveil the masquerade which is my pitiful display of Christianity. The Holy Spirit drilled in me the danger of comparison, an at least you’re not like them mentality. C.S. Lewis suggests that if you eliminate competition, pride can be eradicated in Book 3 of Mere Christianity. However, the moment you start keeping score, 1 Corinthians 13:5, pride rears its ugly head.
The Roman Church became susceptible to this temptation according to the apostle Paul. Like most societies, Roman citizens began to rate specific sins, similar to a top 10 list used my numerous media outlets to enhance their weekly programming. According to Romans 1:18-32, acts like wickedness, idolatry, homosexuality and sexual immorality made the top 5. Yet, Paul pulls a fast one on these Roman Christians with one additional verse, Romans 2:1. With a simple line, Paul knocks off all of these hypocrites from their pedestals.
This same logic resides in modern churches today, recently penetrating my own soul. As people try to make themselves feel better through a comparison of lesser individuals, they are entering grave danger. Paul made sure he exposed the spiritual condition of these Roman believers with hard hitting facts from Romans 3:12. What’s the truth about sin? All sins are equal, except for blasphemy of the Holy Spirit, Mark 3:28-29. Whether you failing to obey God’s commands or not upholding the truth of the Bible through inaction, both are sins, crystal clear in James 4:17.
by Jay Mankus