(If you) are confident that you yourself are a guide to the blind, a light to those who are in darkness, a corrector of the foolish, a teacher of the immature, having in the Law the embodiment of knowledge and of the truth, you, therefore, who teach another, do you not teach yourself? You who preach that one shall not steal, do you steal? You who say that one should not commit adultery, do you commit adultery? You who abhor idols, do you rob temples? You who boast in the Law, through your breaking the Law, do you dishonor God? Romans 2:19-23 (NASB)
In my recent study of Romans I have found great conviction at times. As I was reading the verses above, I once again had to ask myself some tough questions. I believe it is never a bad idea to examine myself and see if there are issues of the heart that must be dealt with, and that is something I have undertaken as a result of reading that passage.
While the passage was not written for this purpose, there can be application made from the message of it! The truth is, anyone who desires to be a teacher, or discipler has to be aware of their own spiritual condition and recognize that we must be careful not to fall into a lifestyle of hypocrisy.
It is very easy to over time to become prescriptive with the Word of God. This means it is easy to say do this or do that because the Bible says to do it without any heart change (behaviorism), and to not be applying the same to your own heart and life. I sure don’t think many people intentionally go there, but I think it happens easier and more often than you may think.
This is where I have found conviction recently. I was cut to the heart as I realized that I have not maintained all the areas of personal righteousness that I should be maintaining. This is not to say I have fallen in a “serious” way, but it is to say that because I desire to be a person who points others in the direction of righteous living I have to be on track for righteous living in every area of my life that I am aware of.
This means I live life as though God Himself were living life right with me, because He is. I live as though I am no longer a slave to sin, because I am not. It means I strive to be holy in all I think, do, and say because this is what is asked of me by my Lord.
Quite a tall order! I know it is possible – because of Christ in me.