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Judgment and Entitlement

March 31, 2011

… you then who teach others, do you not teach yourself?  While you preach against stealing, do you steal?  You who say that one must not commit adultery, do you commit adultery?  You who abhor idols, do you rob temples? – Romans 2: 21-22

I read this and I feel like a total hypocrite.  Not necessarily about stealing or robbing temples, but what if it read something like this:  You preach against lying, but do you you lie to make yourself look better? You preach against gluttony, but are you not a glutton?

That kinda brings it home for me.  In this chapter Paul is addressing the Jewish Christians in Rome, teaching them that judgment is the Lord’s alone.  They are relying on their judaism, their adherence to the Law, to save them, and using it to justify judging the Gentiles in Rome.  He goes on to say no one is righteous, neither Jew nor Greek, circumcised or uncircumcised.  So, why do I, as a Christian, completely removed from a society in which people groups are so distinct (though, I suppose one could argue that’s still the case), still look at myself as more righteous and more deserving of the riches of the Kingdom of God?  Why do I feel entitled to a leadership or teaching role?  What’s going on in my heart that causes me to feel that this is my right, despite my own obvious sinfulness?

I’m kind of struggling with this as I prepare to head out for the summer, leading 30 students on a trip to Sierra Leone.  I suppose I don’t have any good answers.  Perhaps this summer will be an opportunity for God to break me down, get down to the bare materials, and build me into the leader he wants me to be…

What do you guys think?  Do you struggle with feeling like a hypocrite?  Do you find yourself saying one thing and struggling to do the same?

One Comment leave one →
  1. Beth permalink
    March 31, 2011 12:09 pm

    I actually think it’s pretty great when we see the truth of how sinful we really are. Don’t get me wrong, it sucks and stings, but it means that God is at work in us revealing to us exactly what He wants us to see in order that we might live in His truth. Which, by the way, is the only truth we need to be concerned with. It can kinda hurt when we see ourselves in the light of day, (some days being worse than others) and it can bring quite a pang of dismay, but then, we can continue reading on in His Word of His enduring love while we were yet still sinners and will continue to be until He comes back for us, restoring us as we were meant to be. That brings me such hope because no matter how hard we try, without Him, we’ll grower deeper in sin. With Him we have hope of being transformed. Hope of breaking free of the sin that binds us. We’ll have his power and strength to make changes so that His will becomes our will. Ahh…I think all Christians feel a bit hypocritical at times. I’d be shocked to hear any of them say otherwise, but the key I suppose is to see those moments as God teaching moments where we can drop at his feet and repent….
    Oh how I love to read your thoughts, son… Love you, Mom

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