Sunday, April 22, 2012

The Mirror that keeps you from spiritual defeat

Psalm 19:12-13 Who can discern his errors? Acquit me of hidden faults. 13Also keep back Your servant from presumptuous sins; Let them not rule over me; Then I will be blameless, And I shall be acquitted of great transgression.

The Mirror of God's Word
In the midst of definite statements about the Bible, the Psalmist suddenly changes the tone of the text with a question: Who can discern his errors? 

Have you ever had someone say to you: what's that on your face?  What is your response?  Try as you may, you can't look at yourself apart from going into a bathroom to look in the mirror.  A mirror shows you what's really going on.  People are funny - either they will primp in front of a mirror for hours, seeing what they want to see, or people will be the exact opposite and avoid a mirror so as not to see what must be seen.

The point of today's text is that apart from the mirror of God's Word, you cannot accurately evaluate the true condition of your soul.  The scriptures function as a mirror.  James 1:23-25 states - "For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks at his natural face in a mirror; 24for once he has looked at himself and gone away, he has immediately forgotten what kind of person he was. 25But one who looks intently at the perfect law, the law of liberty, and abides by it, not having become a forgetful hearer but an effectual doer, this man will be blessed in what he does."

How the mirror of God's Word enables us to defeat the greatest hindrance to Christian growth
When the writer states: "Aquit me from my hidden faults", he is referring to those hidden areas, those "blind spots" that hinder us in our Christian growth. What is the greatest hinderance to Christian growth?  Pride. 

The idea of "presumptuous sins" refers to those sins that are done with an arrogant, prideful disregard for God and the things of God.  It is when you and I assume we have the "right" or "entitlement" to sin.  Only the mirror of God's Word can show us the true ugliness of the pride that can fuel ongoing or hidden sin patterns.  James 4:6-7 tells us - "But He gives a greater grace. Therefore it says, “GOD IS OPPOSED TO THE PROUD, BUT GIVES GRACE TO THE HUMBLE.” 7Submit therefore to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you." 

How the mirror of God's Word enables you to really live for God
The most practical way to submit yourself to God is by consistent "mirror time" in the scriptures.  At first, you may feel uncomfortable by what you see.  Yet what God will do is show you that He sees you as He sees His Son - Jesus Christ.  The scriptures are what drive me to conclude that in Christ and Christ alone is my confidence.  By the power of God's word, you and I don't have to be ruled by the "baggage" of our hang-ups.  Through the power of God and His word, we can push past those and really live for Jesus Christ!

In Christianity, to humble yourself leads to the greatest of blessings.  It is where you experience the Grace of God needed to resist the enemy and live forth the Christian life. As the Psalmist concludes in this short prayer recorded in Psalm 19:13 - "Then I will be blameless, And I shall be acquitted of great transgression."   As the old saying goes about the Bible: "Either the Bible will keep you from your sins or your sins will keep you from the Bible." Don't neglect getting in front of God's mirror - the Bible.