Comparing Ourselves to God’s Standards
Daily Bible Reading – 2 Corinthians 7-10
Today’s Key Passage – 2 Corinthians 10:12-18
In Paul’s fourth letter to the Corinthians (captured in Scripture as 2 Corinthians), he spent some time in chapter 10 defending his authority and his ministry. Other false teachers had come along and tried to lead the Corinthians away from the Gospel of Jesus Christ. These false teachers attacked Paul and spent a lot of time trying to get the Corinthians to follow their teachings instead of the true teachings of Christ. The false teachers were boasting about their own accomplishments and comparing themselves to Paul and with other teachers to try to gain credibility. In today’s key passage, Paul says that comparing ourselves to other people is dangerous and that we are better off comparing ourselves to God’s standards. In addition, instead of boasting about our own accomplishments, we should boast about what God has done through us.
What happens when we try to compare ourselves to others? The first problem we encounter is when we find that others have things we do not have. When we compare ourselves to others and find that they have more (possessions, money, spiritual gifts, etc.), we usually find ourselves being jealous. This jealousy leads to ungratefulness for all of the things that God has given us. Obviously, this is dangerous. The second problem we encounter is when we find we have more than others do. When we compare ourselves to others and find that we have more (possessions, money, spiritual gifts, etc.) we could begin to feel prideful – obviously another dangerous place to be. As you can see, either way you go, comparing ourselves to others can lead to sin.
What if instead of comparing ourselves to others, we compare ourselves to God’s standards? Keep in mind that God’s standard is perfection, which is pretty difficult. As a simple way to illustrate this, take a look at the Ten Commandments. When was the last time you violated one of these? By God’s standard, anyone who violated a single one of these commandments would be forever separated from him. That is, until Jesus Christ came along. Jesus Christ allowed us to bridge the gap between God and us. God knew that none of us could be perfect, so He sent His only Son, Jesus Christ, to die on the cross for our sins. He had to make this sacrifice for us because He knew we could never live up to His perfect standards. When you think of it like this, it makes it pretty hard to feel ungrateful about what He did for us, and it also makes it pretty hard to feel prideful for what we have done compared to what He did. Instead of worrying about what others have or do not have, ask yourself how you compare to what God wants and how your life compares to Jesus Christ. If we ask ourselves these questions daily, we will yearn to grow in our faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.
During your Bible reading today, what “key passages” stood out to you? Leave a comment below to share what God is showing you about His Word today.
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May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with you today.
Posted on November 17, 2014, in 08 - 2 Corinthians and tagged Bible, Christian, Daily Bible, Daily Devotional, God, God's Character, Godly Living, Jesus, Judgment, Money, Religion, Sin. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.