Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you? —unless indeed you fail to meet the test! – 2 Corinthians 13:5 ESV
What an appropriate time to consider Paul’s command; Examine yourselves to see if you are in the Faith! It is appointed for man to die one time and then be judged. We are called to have discernment, to know the difference between good and bad, right and wrong, better or worse, God’s or the World’s? However, to do that we need to understand that all those words I just described are COMPARISON words; better than what? Closer to God, then when? Good or Bad- compared to what? We need to understand we are called to have discernment. Yet, we are also called to NOT JUDGE. The favorite scripture for non-believers to quote is Matthew 7:1, “Judge not, that you be not judged.” That verse is thrown around whenever you start having people EXAMINE THEMSELVES, and they do not like what you are implying or what they are experiencing from the examination. We are NOT to judge, but we are called to have discernment and that is a slippery slope. Attempting to define discernment without using the word JUDGE, is extremely hard. Discernment is the process of making careful distinctions in our thinking about truth. If you notice, this definition, which I like- says distinctions in our thinking about TRUTH! There is your comparison. It does not matter what your opinion is, it does not matter what my opinion is- what matters is what does God say about this. In order to know what God says about things, we must be able to DISCERN HIS WORD, HIS LEADINGS and quiet the other voices in our head and in our world. My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me. (John 10:27)
Leader, I one time had a pastor start his message by reading from certain scriptures in the Bible, and he would stop after reading something and say, “I don’t like that”, and then RIP IT OUT. He did this about 3 different times and every time, the parishioners GASPED! Then the Pastor asked the congregation, “What’s wrong with what I am doing, we all do it daily. We take what we want, and we remove, ignore, or pretend that which we do not agree with- is a minor disagreement. Or we take what God says and we put our own “twist” on it, and do it our way, which is pretty close to God’s way.” Whoever, therefore, eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty concerning the body and blood of the Lord. Let a person examine himself, then, and so eat of the bread and drink of the cup. For anyone who eats and drinks without discerning the body eats and drinks judgment on himself. That is why many of you are weak and ill, and some have died. But if we judged ourselves truly, we would not be judged. (1 Corinthians 11:27-31) God says if we partake in a manner that is unworthy…. We can clearly see God has a standard, and when we MISS THAT MARK, we fall short of the Glory of God and God calls that SIN! Sin is MISSING THE MARK of God’s standard. In order to have discernment and make proper eternal decisions, we must know what that STANDARD is, so we can compare ourselves to what is being expected from us. We are responsible to KNOW God and to KNOW HIS STANDARD and to KNOW if we are IN THE FAITH.
Conduit, God is NOT playing around. God is wrapping up the TIME OF THE GENTILES, and we are getting ready to go into a NEW TIME, a new dispensation and we need to know if we are acting, thinking, believing, BEING the men and women who God has called us to be in these closing days. Playtime is over and it is time to get serious, because God DEMANDS things be done HIS WAY. Aaron’s sons Nadab and Abihu took their censers, put fire in them and added incense; and they offered unauthorized fire before the Lord, contrary to his command. So fire came out from the presence of the Lord and consumed them, and they died before the Lord. (Leviticus 10:1-2) Aaron watched his sons, his oldest 2 be consumed by the fire of God and Aaron was not even allowed to grieve for them. Because they did not discern the Lord’s commands and follow His instruction, they died performing for God. Moses is a notable person in the patriarchy from the old testament, God used him to bring out the people of Israel from the land of slavery, the land of Egypt. God had promised Moses and the people that they would make it to the promised land. Because Moses did NOT do, exactly what God commanded- speak to the rock- Moses was stopped from getting into the promised land. And the LORD said to Moses and Aaron, “Because you did not believe in me, to uphold me as holy in the eyes of the people of Israel, therefore you shall not bring this assembly into the land that I have given them.” (Numbers 20:12) We are not to JUDGE- to decide who is God’s child, and who is a child of the world- but we are called to have discernment. “When Jesus returned … a Roman officer came and pleaded with him … Jesus said, “I will come and heal him.” But the officer said, “Lord, I am not worthy to have you come into my home. Just say the word from where you are, and my servant will be healed … When Jesus heard this, he was amazed. Turning to those who were following Him, he said, “I tell you the truth, I haven’t seen faith like this in all Israel!” (Matthew 8:5-13) This Roman soldier undoubtedly knew who Jesus was, and what He was capable of. It is time to EXAMINE ourselves, to see if we are in the faith. In order to have the proper discernment we need to KNOW JESUS and to KNOW what He desires us to be doing, be thinking, be preparing, to BE LIKE JESUS! The only way to do that is through HIS WORD and a connection TO HIM! Prayer and studying HIS WORD. Jesus is the Word of God, the Word of God is the Bible; JESUS=BIBLE. In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. (John 1:1-2) The TIME IS NOW, to choose; the world or the LORD? The only way to KNOW JESUS is to KNOW HIS WORD. Consequently, faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ. Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.'”(Romans 10:17, Matthew 4:4) Discern; are you doing what God is commanding you to do in these end days? Are you in HIS WORD, are you on YOUR KNEES in prayer and DO YOU DESIRE HIS COMING for us? If all three are YES, then you are in the FAITH. If any one of those questions is NO, or MAYBE; “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.” (Matthew 3:2)