June 29
‘That, however, is not the way of life you learned.’ Ephesians 4:20
Bible reading: 1 Corinthians 6:1-11 (Go to the Bible passage)
Paul was a man of radical bent. Believers he called ‘the Lord’s people’ and unbelievers he called ‘ungodly’.
Did Paul treat people who did not believe in the Lord Jesus unfairly by calling them ungodly? Or were the standards that Paul applied different from ours? I think the latter.
In the letter to the Romans he said, ‘There is no one righteous, not even one’ (Romans 3:10). But actually, these are not Paul’s words, for here he quoted King David’s words from Psalm 143: ‘Do not bring Your servant into judgment, for no one living is righteous before You’(:2).
It would have been a sorry business if that would have been the final word. But Paul also said, ‘For just as through the disobedience of the one man the many were made sinners, so also through the obedience of the One Man the many will be made righteous’ (Romans 5:19). What wonderful news! No one can call himself righteous before God, but by Jesus’ obedience in dying on the cross, the way is opened for us to become truly righteous through Him. What a tremendous vocation! When we become obedient - just as He was obedient - we will rightly judge the world and all its unrighteousness.
Let us be ever more aware of this. Then we will be prepared to rather be wronged in this world, than to take our disputes before the ungodly for judgment. Following Jesus not only means sharing in His glory, but also sharing in the slander, like Jesus endured it from His contemporaries. For whoever has become a new creation in Jesus Christ, is – just like Jesus - suspected in this world, but loved by God.

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