A call to self-examination

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A call to self-examination       

2 Corinthians 13:5 “Examine yourselves to see whether you are in the faith; test yourselves. Do you not realize that Christ Jesus is in you-unless, of course, you fail the test?”

Extra Reading: 2 Corinthians 13: 5-10

Human beings are an interesting species. We tend to be more interested in ourselves than anything else, yet the last thing in the world we want is the real truth about ourselves. The Bible pin-points this again and again. When it comes to self-examination and self-analysis we are easily put off by rationalizing, by self-centredness and by an unwillingness to be utterly honest with ourselves, and with one another and with God. Let’s try and unpack this theme with few questions: “What stops us from effectively involving ourselves in self-examination? I think the answer is ‘self-satisfaction and complacency’. In 2 Corinthians 8:7 Paul says “But just as you excel in everything-in faith, in speech, in knowledge, in complete earnestness…” Paul was showing them something about their lack of generosity. So we can be wonderfully eloquent and woefully stingy! So excellence in one area of our discipleship can make us complacent about some other areas of deficiency, “Examine yourselves” to see where you are coming short.

Please don’t say, “I can’t be bothered!” The challenge is we tend to organize our lives into separate watertight compartments. We are very happy with some, but it hurts us a great deal to probe into other compartments. Another hindrance to self-examination is ‘self-deception’ (1 Cor. 5). Paul discovered there was a huge, rapidly growing “cancer” in the body of the Corinthian Church that was being glossed over-sexual immorality. In 1 Corinthians 5:2 Paul says, “And you are proud! Shouldn’t you rather have been filled with grief and have put out of your fellowship the man who did this?” Both individually and in church life we find discipline very difficult. God’s Word is challenging us to engage in self-examination. Have you done this before?

Prayer: Lord Jesus, we realize how weak we are as human beings. Help us to examine ourselves to see whether we are in the faith. In Jesus Christ’s name we pray, Amen.

Rev. Samuel N. Modise        

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