Examine Yourself

 Examine yourself

Verses 3-5 “For if anyone thinks he is something when he is nothing, he deceives himself. But each one must examine his own work, and the he will have reason for boasting in regard to himself alone, and not in regard to another. For each one will bear his own load.”

Our flesh would love to take advantage of the situation. Here we are, the good Christian, fulfilling the law of Christ, bearing the heavy burden that our brother or sister is dealing with. And sin would love to take this moment and cause our hearts to compare us to them. “Look at that. Look at him struggle. I’m sure glad I don’t struggle like that! I’ve got it all together!”

Deception has reared its ugly head! You who think you are something, are you not nothing?

And this is what Paul means when he says “But each one must examine his own work, and the he will have reason for boasting in regard to himself alone, and not in regard to another.”

Our standard is Christ! Not our brother or sister in Christ. Not our husband, not our wife, not our kids, our elders, our small group leaders, or any other member of the Church.

And so we don’t examine our brother or sister or husband or wife or anyone else in a vain attempt to justify ourselves. We examine ourselves. We carefully look at our deeds, our actions and our words, and we compare them to Christ.

By His grace we have been saved – saved from the wrath of God that we justly deserved and saved from our sin that had put us at enmity with Him.

For those of us in this right relationship with God, we have been saved to new life! We have been given a new man, as the old man has been put to death. And the righteousness of Christ now is imputed to us as our own righteousness, and we live by it! We now walk by the Spirit of Christ within us!

 So we must examine ourselves and measure our daily walk, not according the measure of one another, but according to the measure of the One who’s righteousness is now ours!

And we examine ourselves for this reason also: “For each one will bear his own load.”

This is not the burden Paul refers to in verse two but a lighter load, like a soldier’s load. We are now Christ’s. We carry His yoke, His burden. And the goodness of His burden is that it is light! By His power we die daily to sin, and live for Christ. This is our load that we carry, in the grace of God.

So what does this all mean for us?

Application:

  1. We must be overwhelmed with the love of Christ for us and for His church that we would deal with sin.
    As His redeemed people sin has no power and not place in us or among us. Let us not grow cold in our love for Christ that we are unwilling to love our sinning brother or sister and restore them and carry their burden with them. And let us not grow cold in our love for Jesus that we do not carefully examine our hearts day by day, hour by hour, minute by minute for the presence of pride and sin.Think for a moment about the believers who God has put in your life. Think for a moment about those in your church and in your fellowship group, small group, or Bible study. Does the love that Christ has for you, flow out into love for these people that you would desire to restore them when they are in sin? Or does your heart fill with pride when a brother or sister stumbles?
  2. We must be overwhelmed with the love of Christ that we would deal with gentleness with those who are caught by sin.
    Gentleness does not mean we pass sin over in our brother or sister but that we deal with it in humbleness and meekness. We are also sinners, saved by grace. His love has covered a multitude of our own sins, and this is the love we must bring to bear on those who carry their weighty burden.Again, let’s think for a moment about those times when a brother or sister in Christ has sinned, probably directly against us. How have we responded? Was your heart filled with love for them that you would desire to confront them and in gentleness restore them through the washing of scripture and prayer? I know that I am weak in this. It is so easy for me to get offended or become arrogant when another believer falls into sin, especially if they sin against me. But the right response, in light of God’s love for them and for me, despite my own sinfulness, should be to address the sin in their own heart in gentleness.
  3. We must be overwhelmed by the necessity of prayer.
    We are helpless to do any of this without the Spirit of God actively working in our hearts to produce words and deeds of righteousness. We must prayerfully fall upon God’s grace to give us the strength and love to bear one another’s burdens.
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  1. July 29th, 2010

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