In Philippians 2:3 Paul presents to us an awesome truth. He writes, "Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind, let each esteem other better than themselves."
Now, of course, the members of the body of Christ, His church, believe and must believe that God made them better than those whom He left in unbelief and did not cause to be born again. But here Paul admonishes those who are born again to esteem other born-again children of God as being better than themselves. They must be lowly-minded and free from vainglory.
Yes, we see the sins of other children of God. Paul in his epistles often rebuked believers for the sins which he saw in their lives. But he did not esteem himself better and higher than they. In Romans 7:24 he wrote, "O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?" And even before that, he wrote in verse 18, "For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh), dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not." The point is that we must be honest and look into our own hearts and see the terrible sins that are there. We can see only the outward deeds of others. We cannot read their hearts. We cannot see, as God sees in smallest detail, how sorry they are for their sins. We ought to examine and give deep thought to that in our own souls.
Remember the publican in Jesus' parable. Correctly he cried out, "God be merciful to me the sinner. "Yes, the Greek has that article the, not merely a sinner. We must with him see how vile, how sinful, we are. We must see that sinfulness in us that makes us think that we are better than other believers.
Do you have that humility? Can you sincerely confess yourself to be the biggest sinner you know? You may not be the biggest sinner, but you should see yourself as such. You should see how much you need Christ and should appreciate all that He did for you.
Read: Luke 18:9-14
Through the Bible in One Year
Jeremiah 14:11-22 ; Jeremiah 15 ; Jeremiah 16:1-15
1 Thessalonians 2:9-20; 1 Thessalonians 3:1-13
Quote for Reflection:
Room for Christ: “…there was no room for them in the inn.“ (Luke 2:7) Speech is very free in this land; but, oh, how little room there is for Christ in our conversations! Even on Sunday afternoon, how little room there is for Christ in some professing Christian homes. …I address many who are working-men. You are employed among a great many different companies day after day; do you not find, brethren--I know you do--that there is very little room for Christ "in the workplace?" There is room for talk of sports; there is room for lewd conversation, there is room for politics, slanders, or lying talk; but there is no room for Christ. Too many of our working men think Christianity would be an encumbrance, a chain, a prison to them. They can frequent the theater, or listen to some conference speaker, but the Church is too dreary for them. …The world is elbowing and pushing for more room, until there is scarce a corner left where the babe of Bethlehem can be laid.” - Charles H. Spurgeon
- Date: 10-October