I think it all goes back to our purpose in this life. We are called to glorify God in everything we do wherever we are. So, I suppose that examining ourselves that way is to ask ourselves this question whenever we do or about to do something: am I glorifying my Lord and Savior in this? or does it make others question, "Look here, is that the Christian?" ? That's what learned with time throughout my life. I live in an Islamic country and I am supposed to dress in a certain way that is not very different from Muslim girls (except for the veil of course). So, I when I dress up, I dress up that I may not be a source of lust or temptation to them... and so that I may not force them to say bad things about my Lord and Savior, because afterall, I am called after His name: a Christian.
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Posted 04 June 2014 - 01:02 AM
Posted 04 June 2014 - 07:36 AM
I have told this story in chat upon a few occasions, maybe it fits here, maybe it doesn't, but here goes:
I used to struggle, had doubts of my own salvation for years. I would see the tension between verses that would imply "by this we know we have been saved" and those that warn us to examine ourselves. Particularly to me:
21“Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter. 22“Many will say to Me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?’ 23“And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; DEPART FROM ME, YOU WHO PRACTICE LAWLESSNESS.’
Posted 06 June 2014 - 02:38 AM
Posted 12 June 2014 - 12:48 AM
First of all, what it means to examine ourselves it to make a comparison. In this instance, Paul is advising us to think critically about ourselves and compare what we observe (about ourselves ) to what is holy, just and right: Jesus. This is how we examine ourselves. The goal in mind should indeed go beyond merely accepting Christ and doing what is decreed in his word. These are necessary of course and perhaps most important, but self-examination is a journey that begins first by getting to know the one we want to make a comparison to. We can know God in a sense by reading his word, going to church and doing the like, but what is sincerity if we live and die for a King who is only words in a book and laws on a stone? Consider Matt. 7:21-23:
"Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ Then I will tell them, ‘I never knew you."
The test is all about commitment. We commit to the challenge of reflecting God's flawless ways despite our nature to fail time and time again. And when we fail to hit the mark, we fail. Period. But think about how much we fail everyday, and the constant slack God gives us. Comparing ourselves to Jesus - our perfect, law making rule-model - we are all failures. But the neat thing about being saved is the promise God gave to have grace. It's an endless struggle... or rather, it's a struggle to the end, but the refinement is so far beyond worth it, not to mention what it takes to reach that point; the getting closer to God, spiritually.
Giving up puts that whole relationship in jeopardy, just like a fish will likely glut or starve if we give up trying to feed it the right 'pinch' of food.
I think every relationship requires commitment and what motivates our commitment? Why, nothing but love you see. I will conclude my short, reference lacking opinion here to agree with Donibm, in that it all finds it's roots in love. Pretty much the sum of our lives hedges on what we love ( and don't love ).
By the way, Donibm, I am fond of your writing. You have a special way of extracting your thoughts and expressing them explicitly. I would say "well executed" but it seems to simply come natural to you (: We should talk sometime... anytime, even if distant from this time, at least some time (?)
Posted 12 June 2014 - 07:21 AM
First quite looking for subjective proof of Him and objectively enter into His Word
And what does someone do who does not pass the test? If answers to the spiritual questions are affirmative, but something else is very wrong, where do you turn? If you've accepted Christ and believe all the right things, yet you walk in darkness (not with a major sin problem maybe) without the Spirit, what can you do ?
by knowing that your in the same darkness as those who will not enter into the light
of His Word ...
19 Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble.
20 But wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead?
We know we are His by the power of obedience that comes into us and a new heart that leaves the
old importance's behind by embracing the promise of the morrow in glorifying Jesus with that life...
Posted 12 June 2014 - 04:44 PM
Posted 12 June 2014 - 07:44 PM
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