Honor or Dishonor? Reading through this conversation between Jesus and the religious leaders, it is obvious that the religious leaders totally lacked the ability to understand the words of Jesus.
45 And because I tell you the truth, ye believe me not.
46 Which of you convinceth me of sin? And if I say the truth, why do ye not believe me?
47 He that is of God heareth God's words: ye therefore hear them not, because ye are not of God.
48 Then answered the Jews, and said unto him, Say we not well that thou art a Samaritan, and hast a devil?
49 Jesus answered, I have not a devil; but I honour my Father, and ye do dishonour me.
50 And I seek not mine own glory: there is one that seeketh and judgeth.
(John 8:45-50, King James Version)
Honor or Dishonor?
As I was reading through this continuation of Jesus' conversation with the religious leaders, I was struck by the inability of the Jewish leaders to understand the words of Jesus. Though Jesus spoke plainly the words of truth, their pride kept them from accepting those words.
What do we see in our day? Again we ask the same question we asked in yesterday's devotion. Is every religious person a Christian? How can it be that so few find the way to Christ.
It was not as though the religious Jews were neutral; they hated the words of Christ, and attributed them to the devil.
Then answered the Jews, and said unto him, Say we not well that thou art a Samaritan, and hast a devil?
How sad! Jesus reply is quite simple.
Jesus answered, I have not a devil; but I honour my Father, and ye do dishonour me. And I seek not mine own glory: there is one that seeketh and judgeth.
Oh how careful we must be that we, as professing Christians, are led by Christ and not by the passions of a sinful heart. In the name of zeal for God, many professing Christians are like these religious Jews. They are filled with indignation and even hatred toward those who do not believe exactly as they do. They build their own paper tigers and ignore the plain teaching of God's Word. In the name of religion they deny the plain truths of the Word, even denying that Jesus Christ is truly the Son of God and the Son of Man.
As Christians, our attitude toward all unbelievers must be the same as that of Christ. We do not have Christ's ability to see into the hearts of others, therefore we must show compassion, and continually pray for the unbelievers around us. Who knows whether the very reason God has put us in their midst is to share Christ? Who knows whether God will use the seeds planted by our love of Christ, and faithful testimony for Him to bring them to Christ?
We must not be naive! Not all who profess Christ are Christians. We must study the Word of God, and keep a close relationship with the Lord. The Holy Spirit within our hearts will guide us into all truth.
Take some time and ponder your walk with the Lord. Does your life show honor or dishonor to the Lord Jesus Christ?