Naturally each individual forgets the beam in his own eye and perceives only the mote in his neighbor’s. One will not bear with the faults of the other; each requires perfection of his fellow. Hence they reflect upon each other’s conduct. One resorts to this subterfuge, the other to that, to evade the harassing censure and displeasure of his neighbor.
Kelly Clarkson famously sings, “What Doesn’t Kill You Makes You Stronger.” The sentiment being, “if you’re still alive, you can learn from the experience and become a better, stronger person.” As humans we love this kind of stuff because it gives us hope, a silver lining around the horrendously difficult life we are living under the sun.
Peter says to “prepare your mind for action” and to “be sober-minded.” What does he mean by these things? What should we focus our minds on? What is the holiness God is calling us to? How does Peter comfort us with the forever identity of Jesus? We are told to put away a list of terrible things but what does he tell us to do instead?
Shame is shameful. That may seem obvious but ponder this observation from the authors of Scenes of Shame: “Shame, indeed, covers shame itself—it is shameful to express shame.” Something so powerful that it can cover itself, with itself, is something to be reckoned with.
God tells the people not to do certain things for the sake of the dead and to refrain from eating different animals. Why does God command these things? What does grief have to do with this? How do we reconcile these things we Christian freedom? How do we respond to those who would seek to place Christians back under the law? Should we “unhitch” from the Old Testament? Well, that depends on what you mean.
All I need to know about your spiritual condition, I can discover by watching you drive your car. What I’ve learned is that everyone is a lawbreaker, including me. It’s as simple as asking a few short questions about your driving habits…