There can only be two outcomes if we compare ourselves with another human being: Either we are proud that we are better than he is, or we are embarrassed and ashamed and tempted to be envious of him.
Love envies not (1 Cor. 13:4).
Love is happy for another person’s gain (Jonathan with David).
Hate is envious of another’s gain (Saul with David).
GOD TELLS US TO EXAMINE OURSELVES TO SEE HOW WE MEASURE UP TO THE “RULE” OF CHRIST’S HEART.
WHAT SHOULD EVERY CHRISTIAN’S MEASURING STICK BE?
- For we dare not make ourselves of the number, or compare ourselves with some that commend themselves: (‘Sound like the Pharisee as he stood praying, feeling so superior to the publican?) but they measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise. But we will not boast of things without our measure, but according to the measure of the rule which God hath distributed to us, a measure to reach even unto you…(2 Cor. 10:12-13).
WHAT IS THIS MEASURE THAT GOD HAS DISTRIBUTED TO US?
- Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ: ( 4:13).
- Examine (3985. peirazo; to test (obj.) i.e. endeavor, scrutinize, entice, discipline) yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates? (2 Cor. 13:5).
WE ARE NOT ONLY GIVEN INSTRUCTIONS TO MEASURE OURSELVES AGAINST THIS “RULER” AT LEAST EVERY FIRST DAY OF THE WEEK, BUT ALSO ARE TOLD SPECIFICALLY WHY THIS IS SO CRUCIAL:
- But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup. For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord’s body. For this cause many are weak and sickly among you, and many sleep. For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged. But when we are judged, we are chastened of the Lord, that we should not be condemned with the world” (1 Cor. 11:28-32).
GOD’S WORD IS A MIRROR, AND SHOULD BE OUR COUNSELOR. HOW OFTEN DO WE LOOK INTO IT?
- For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. Neither is there any creature that is not manifest in his sight: but all things are naked and opened unto the eyes of him with whom we have to do ( 4:12-13).
If we’re comparing ourselves with one another, we’re aiming for the wrong mark, and will fall way short of our mark to be like Christ. We should never be distracted by how others are doing, because that will only hinder our own growth.
When someone corrects them for misbehavior, kids are constantly saying, “Well SHE did it too,” trying to justify themselves because of others’ behavior. Wrong reaction causes us to refuse reproof and not admit and confess we have a problem we need to work on. Does a judge listen to a murderer who says, “Well, HE killed somebody too?” Each of us has to answer for our own works. No comparison with anyone except Jesus is of any use except to damage and warp our thinking.
For this is the message that ye heard from the beginning, that we should love one another. Not as Cain, who was of that wicked one, and slew his brother. And wherefore slew he him? Because his own works were evil, and his brother’s righteous. Marvel not, my brethren, if the world hate you. We know that we have passed from death unto life, because we love the brethren. He that loveth not his brother abideth in death. Whosoever hateth his brother is a murderer: and ye know that no murderer hath eternal life abiding in him (1 John 3:11-15).
Likewise, ye younger, submit (5293. hupotasso, hoop-ot-as’-so; from G5259 and G5021; to subordinate; reflex. to obey) yourselves unto the elder. Yea, all of you be subject one to another, and be clothed with humility: for God resisteth the proud, and giveth grace to the humble. Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time: (1 Pet. 5:5-6). (Webster’s – subordinate: placed in or occupying a lower class, rank, or position; submissive to or controlled by authority)
The fear of the LORD is the instruction of wisdom; and before honour is humility ( 15:33).
Before destruction the heart of man is haughty, and before honour is humility ( 18:12).
As snow in summer, and as rain in harvest, so honour is not seemly for a fool ( 26:1).
As he that bindeth a stone in a sling, so is he that giveth honour to a fool. (Haman in 26:8).
Foolishness is bound in the heart of a child; but the rod of correction shall drive it far from him ( 22:15).
Jesus answered, If I honour myself, my honour is nothing: it is my Father that honoureth me; of whom ye say, that he is your God: (John 8:54).
If any man serve me, let him follow me; and where I am, there shall also my servant be: if any man serve me, him will my Father honour (John 12:26).
But after thy hardness and impenitent heart treasurest up unto thyself wrath against the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God; Who will render to every man according to his deeds: To them who by patient continuance in well doing seek for glory and honour and immortality, eternal life: But unto them that are contentious, and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, indignation and wrath, ( 2:5-8).
Grudge not one against another, brethren, lest ye be condemned: behold, the judge standeth before the door (James 5:9).
Let us not be desirous of vain glory, provoking (4292. prokaleomai, to call forth to oneself (challenge), i.e. (by impl.) to irritate) one another, envying one another (Gal 5:26).
Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted. Bear ye one another’s burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ. For if a man think himself to be something, when he is nothing, he deceiveth himself. But let every man prove his own work, and then shall he have rejoicing in himself alone, and not in another. For every man shall bear his own burden. Let him that is taught in the word communicate unto him that teacheth in all good things. Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; But he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting. And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not (Gal. 6:1-9).