you, my friend, pass judgment on others? You have no excuse at all, whoever
you are. For when you judge others and then do the same things which they
do, you condemn yourself."
In 1929 the astronomer Edwin Hubble made an astounding discovery. Every other galaxy in the universe seems to be moving away from ours! Does this mean that our galaxy alone remains immovable in the center of the universe? Actually, no. The view is no different from any other galaxy. The entire universe is exapanding, and every galaxy recedes from every other galaxy. No galaxy resides at the center -- there is no center.
We each are the center of our own universe, and we see everyone else as different from us. Surprise! They see themselves the same way! In fact, we are no different.
If you are a sheep in the midst of a flock of black sheep, would you suppose yourself to be white? Then why as a person do you suppose yourself to be so different from everyone around you?
It seems that everyone is out to take advantage of you. The affable car salesman unloads a lemon on you. Your mechanic overcharges for labor and replaces parts that don't need replacing. Your realtor sweet-talks you into a quick sale, so that he can pocket his commission. The back-slapping minister at church really just wants to beef up attendance and swell the offering. The friendly (TOO friendly) neighbor who stops to chat is sniffing around for gossip fodder. The "helpful" coworker is seeking political capital to get himself promoted.
But you who hate to be used, do you use others?
Everyone around you is war with each other. Children break from parents, sibling from sibling, spouse from spouse, neighbor from neighbor, worker from coworker. Because we don't want to experience the pain of a rupture, we try not to get too close to anyone, nor let anyone get too close to us..
But you who hate fighting, are you at peace within yourself?
Everyone else blames others for their own problems. But is yours the only finger pointing aright? "If you do away with the yoke of oppression, with the pointing finger and malicious talk, and if you spend yourselves in behalf of the hungry and satisfy the needs of the oppressed, then your light will rise in the darkness, and your night will become like the noonday." (Is. 58:10)
Everyone else indulges in gossip and backbiting. But do you stop to leaf through the scandal sheets at the supermarket checkout counter? Or do you peruse the so-called "news" magazine articles which dissect with relish the private lives of the prominent? Reporters dog the famous like hyenas, ripping great chunks of flesh from their hindquarters at every opportunity. Why? Because we the people gobble it up!
No wonder we are so protective of our own posteriors, clutching ourselves, afraid to be found naked.
There is only one escape from this “sinful generation”.
Admit that you are no different from everyone else. Take the plank
out of your own eye, though you feel it's only a speck.
You may go even further. Take responsibility for the sins of "others". Pray as Daniel prayed in Daniel 9:20, confessing our own sin and the sin of our people . The sin of your people IS your sin. They outwardly mirror the secret state of your inward heart. If you do this, God may work His redemption for them through you.
Prayer: Father, through our contrition and repentance, please work Your restoration and reconciliation, not just in us, but in our people. I pray in the name of Jesus Christ, upon whose blood our redemption is founded.
Copyright © 1998 CrossPollen
Last Revised: November 23, 2002
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