Sunday, May 25, 2008

Eyes on Jesus Please. 2


It is very troubling what is happening in our culture. It is becoming more and more difficult to avoid the appeals to the base nature of man. This was the case during the times of St Paul and his loved ones in Corinth. Two responses happen in the lives of believers. The first is to cave into temptation and excuse the self indulgence. The second is to try to run away from it and feel proud and brag about that monasticism and self piety. Neither one is the proper response for the follower of Jesus.

1 Corinthians 5: 11 Therefore, knowing the fear of the Lord, we persuade others. But what we are is known to God, and I hope it is known also to your conscience. 12 We are not commending ourselves to you again but giving you cause to boast about us, so that you may be able to answer those who boast about outward appearance and not about what is in the heart. 13 For if we are beside ourselves, it is for God; if we are in our right mind, it is for you. 14 For the love of Christ controls us, because we have concluded this: that one has died for all, therefore all have died; 15 and he died for all, that those who live might no longer live for themselves but for him who for their sake died and was raised. ESV

Both of the above responses are living for ones self. St Paul encourages us to live for Him who died for us and resurrected for us. And while living for Him we persuade others. One cannot persuade others if they are living as if Jesus did not matter. Neither can one persuade others if they refuse to dirty themselves with the presence of unbelievers. This is what the Pharisees were like. They were very self righteous men who had the activities to prove it. However, they could not be bothered with sinners. They in fact were scandalized with Jesus eating with those who were looked down on. We must be very careful not to be so captivated by our desire and ability to keep ourselves from wallowing in the muck of our culture.

It is after all about Jesus who died for our self righteousness and false piety. The sin of pride in one’s holiness nailed Jesus to the tree. God forbid we take our eyes off Jesus and place them on ourselves as though we were anything.

In the Name of Jesus. Amen. †

1 comment:

steve martin said...

David,

Terrific post!

I guess it is natural for sinful man to take his eyes off of jesus and put them toward satisfying the self.

I think that is why we need to be kept in Christ. Faith can be lost. Otherwise the scriptures would not admonish us to keep our eyes on Christ.

This is why the tools of piety are so important. Worship, Bible study, prayer...these things keep our eyes on Christ and ought not be neglected. When we do neglect them we pay a heavy price. And when we do neglect them...He forgives us.

prais and Glory be to the One who is our all in all...Jesus Christ our Lord!

Thanks David!

- Steve M.