Therefore you have no excuse, O man, every one of you who judges. For in passing judgment on another you condemn yourself, because you, the judge, practice the very same things. We know that the judgment of God rightly falls on those who practice such things. Do you suppose, O man—you who judge those who practice such things and yet do them yourself—that you will escape the judgment of God? Or do you presume on the riches of his kindness and forbearance and patience, not knowing that God’s kindness is meant to lead you to repentance? But because of your hard and impenitent heart you are storing up wrath for yourself on the day of wrath when God’s righteous judgment will be revealed. Romans 2:1-5
Over the years I have encountered many Sunday morning Christians. I have to admit that I have been one myself. Sometime I still am. A Sunday morning Christian is someone who shows up every Sunday for church they may even attend Sunday school but come Monday morning they are back in the world with a vengeance. Not a vengeance for Christ but one that works get all they can. They are ruthless business men and women. They show no quarter and will do whatever it takes to succeed.
To everyone there is no difference between their behavior and a non-believer’s. So people look at them and say “I don’t see any difference between Christians and everybody else. Why give up my Sundays?
Then they are the judges. Christians who are always pointing out the sins of the rest of the world and letting them know that God’s judgment is at hand. They are quick to point out that any problems of misfortunes are the rightful judgment of God. They act as if they know the mind of God. Yes, God may be punishing them but more likely He is using these trials to bring that person closer to Him. And even if He is punishing that person it is not our place to judge.
Today’s verses are very plain, we need to stop the judgments and take care of our own lives. Don’t be like the Pharisee praying thank you God I am not like that poor sinner. Instead we need to pray Lord have mercy on the wretch that I am. First get our own house in order and then we can help our neighbors.
For me it was my language. Growing up I could cuss a blue streak. Everybody around me used profanity and for me it was just a part of talking. I have tried and to a great extent succeeded. However, if I break something I am trying to use or hit my thumb with a hammer watch out. The words come flying. They are out of my mouth before I know it. And it is back to the drawing board as I once again try to curb my language. I know that if a non-believer is around they must think, “Christian, yeah right?” The work continues. I really need to carry around a big sign – “Be patient, God is not finished with me yet.”
Finally we need to be a walking example of what a Christian should be, not perfect but always trying to lead a better life, someone who daily tries to walk with the Lord. For most people we will be the only Bible they ever read. We need to have them ask “why is she different? What is it that he has?” and finally “I want what they have.”
Judgment is the Lord’s; we need to be helpers and servants bringing others to Him.
Have a blessed day,
I try to stay a week ahead when I write these. Normally that is not a problem but for today’s written before Mother’s Day I felt I needed to add an update. We took my wife, my mom and our kids and grandkids out for the traditional Mother’s Day meal after church. These occasions are special because all nine of us are together to share a meal and each other’s company. I was sitting next to our daughter, Amy. Amy is interning for the ministry at her church and for the past six months or so working as a waitress. During the conversation she mentioned how some Christians act at the restaurant where she works, in fact it seem to happen all too often. A group will come in after church all dressed up and then proceed to be demanding, rude to the staff and quite often tip poorly even when the service has been good to great. Now what bothers Amy is not just the behavior of Christians but the damage it does to her witness. Wait staff tend to have a high number of non-believers. They work most Sundays so most never attend church. Amy is not shy about her beliefs and uses the time to share with co-workers about Jesus. She told me that a week’s worth of witness can be undone by an hour’s worth of un-Christian behavior over a Sunday lunch. Just as I mentioned above Amy’s co-workers look at this behavior and think why be a Christian if they are so rude, so cheap and so demanding. They are just like all the rest of the customers. Nothing special about Christians and in face they seem to be worse than the others. This is a real world example of how careless behavior can turn people off to the saving message of the Gospel. So the next time you go out to eat after church, remember the person waiting on you probably has not been in a church for years. How you act is how they perceive Christ. Let’s make sure our Lord is well perceived.