I've been chewing on this Scripture for the past few weeks -
"So when you, a mere human being, pass judgment on them and yet do the same things, do you think you will escape God’s judgment? Or do you show contempt for the riches of his kindness, forbearance and patience, not realizing that God’s kindness is intended to lead you to repentance?" - Romans 2:3-4 NIV
There are a few things I want to point out before I dive in any deeper -
- You can’t read this Scripture out of the context that Paul defines in the previous chapter. Go read Romans 1:18-32 right now. No, seriously.
- These verses in no way condone the sin. Chapter One addresses several sins specifically including ALL TYPES of sexual immorality but it also talks about disrespectful children, gossiping and greed to name just a few.
- In Chapter One Paul addresses the depravity of man without Christ. In Chapter Two he rebukes the church for walking in those same sins and yet condemning those who don’t know Jesus.
This Scripture parallels perfectly how and what Jesus taught in Matthew 7:1-5. Jesus instructed his followers to consider the ‘log’ in their own eye before addressing the ‘speck’ in others. However, many people miss that the goal of dealing with the ‘log’ was to see clearly so we can help others with their ‘speck’. Jesus never intended for us to leave people with a speck in their eye.
Recently I was working on a project and ended up with the tiniest, least little flake of metal in my eye. At that moment EVERYTHING STOPPED! My eye was watering out of control, I couldn’t see anything and by the amount of pain I felt I was convinced something the size of a steak knife had to be protruding from my skull. Nope. Not even close. To be perfectly honest a ‘speck’ was being generous. It took me and a friend a couple of minutes just to find it. Even though it was so small I can tell you nothing else mattered until it was dealt with. Getting it out RIGHT NOW summed up my total life’s goal in that moment.
Specks can be a HUGE deal and Jesus wants us seeing clearly so that we can help others experience that same freedom. So this is what I believe the Bible is saying -
- Deal with your own issues first. Maybe before we slam the Pride Parade on Facebook we should take a look at our own porn addiction. Global Christian Center’s website states that, “The use of pornographic material among Christians continues to rise, reaching near epidemic proportions in the church. Shocking statistics released by Net Accountability reveal that 50 percent of evangelical pastors viewed pornography last year. A study by Internet Filter Review revealed that 53 percent of Promise Keeper men viewed pornography the week before the survey, and 17 percent of women admitted to struggling with pornography addiction. Focus on the Family recently reported that one in seven calls to their pastoral care line concern Internet pornography.” Both are sexual sin period. But is it possible that the Church might have a log problem?
- Remember ‘how’ you say something is often more important than ‘what’ you say. If it’s God’s ‘KINDNESS’ that brings heart change then maybe that should be the tone of our voice and the attitude of our heart.
- Don’t forget it’s GOD’S STRENGTH in OUR WEAKNESS that brings freedom. We really don’t have much room to judge, just offer others the same hope that God has given us. Humility is key.
So let’s let God deal with our stuff. And let’s be kind when God allows us to help others with theirs.