We tend to spend our time and energy on those people we admire. We spend our hard-earned money to go to the movies or buy DVDs of our favorite movie stars. We spend a lot to go to concerts or buy CDs of our favorite musicians. We even spend lots of money to go watch a bunch of millionaires run around a field fighting over a ball when they can all easily afford to buy their own. We spend a lot of time and energy campaigning for the politicians who claim to share our values. In the workplace, there are always those who kiss up to the boss in hopes of gaining an edge over those who don’t. In school, even in the first years of elementary school, there are always the popular kids whom everyone tries to be friends with. We try to be identified with those whom society views as desirable, such as the rich, the powerful, the talented, and those who are physically attractive.
1 My brethren, have not the faith of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory, with respect of persons.
2 For if there come unto your assembly a man with a gold ring, in goodly apparel, and there come in also a poor man in vile raiment;
3 And ye have respect to him that weareth the gay clothing, and say unto him, Sit thou here in a good place; and say to the poor, Stand thou there, or sit here under my footstool:
4 Are ye not then partial in yourselves, and are become judges of evil thoughts?
5 Hearken, my beloved brethren, Hath not God chosen the poor of this world rich in faith, and heirs of the kingdom which he hath promised to them that love him?
6 But ye have despised the poor. Do not rich men oppress you, and draw you before the judgment seats?
7 Do not they blaspheme that worthy name by the which ye are called?
8 If ye fulfil the royal law according to the scripture, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself, ye do well:
9 But if ye have respect to persons, ye commit sin, and are convinced of the law as transgressors.
We often judge others by what we can see from the outside, but we need to try to see them the way God sees them. All the way back in the book of Genesis we read that God created man in His own image. That means that everybody, from the richest, most powerful, most talented, most attractive person in the world, all the way down to the poorest, lowest, most awkward, ugliest person in the world, are created in God’s image. Because we live in a sin-cursed world, it’s sometimes hard for us to see that image in others, and even in ourselves. We judge others because, in our minds, their sins are somehow worse than ours. Proverbs 14:12 says, “There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.” Most people, and even some churches, will tell you that there are different degrees of sins, and that some people are worse than others, but God says that if you’ve broken one law, you’ve broken them all.
10 For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all.
11 For he that said, Do not commit adultery, said also, Do not kill. Now if thou commit no adultery, yet if thou kill, thou art become a transgressor of the law.
Nobody in the entire history of the world has ever earned their own way into Heaven. In John 3:16 Jesus didn’t say, “For God so loved everyone who never killed,” or “For God so loved everyone who never stole,” or “For God so loved Baptists.” He said, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” “The world.” That’s everybody. Everybody you’ve ever met or ever will meet is special enough that Jesus gave His life for them. Who are we to look down on them just because they might not have the same sins in their lives that we have in ours? What right do we have to withhold from them the love and compassion it takes to tell them what Jesus did for them? Who are we to determine who is worthy to be warned of the judgment to come and told how to escape it? God called us to reach the lost for Him.
We're not called to be judges.
We're called to be witnesses.
We're not called to coexist.
We're called to be salt and light.
We're not called to be nice.
We're called to be not afraid.
We're not called to be politically correct.
We're called to be biblically right.
We’re not called to be comfortable.
We’re called to be committed.