Comparing Our Worst to Their Best

I don’t know about you but I have a tendency to compare the worst moments of my faith to the best moments of those in scripture and wonder why I can’t be more like them or wonder why my faith is so weak. Wouldn’t it be just as easy to pick out their worst moments, our best, and claim superior faith to those in the Bible? But you don’t find anyone doing that. It is much easier to beat ourselves up rather than acknowledging that the people we read about in scripture we read only the highlights both good and bad. One moment Elijah is complaining in a cave that he is the only prophet left and he too will be killed, the next he is defeating false prophets on Mt. Carmel. One moment Moses is raising his hands to part the Red Sea the next he strikes the rock rather than speak to it. One moment David is defeating Goliath and not too many chapters later he is murdering, adulterering (is that a word?), and all the rest.

We all have our best and our worst and I think it is good to come to grips with that and realize that God can work with both. I also think it is important to not beat ourselves up over comparisons with the highlights of faith in the lives of other people. The Bible never says we will only be saved if we never waiver or have a doubt. Thank God for that! If that were so, count out David, Elijah, Moses, Peter, Abraham, Thomas, and many others.

0 Responses to Comparing Our Worst to Their Best

  1. Hank says:

    Amen Matt — so true!

  2. ozziepete says:

    Yeah, but imagine if we went around saying we had more faith than Elijah because we’ve never huddled in a cave… then what would folks say about us?

    I think we do this with our churches. We compare the worst elements of Churches of Christ with the best elements of a mega church (or some other group) and all we accomplish is to generate discontent, Is it possible to compare our best with their worst? But then we seem arrogant!

    Are we too quick to “be careful that we don’t fall” (1 Cor10:12) and too slow to say with Paul “follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ”. (1 Cor. 11:1)

  3. mattdabbs says:

    Peter,

    Right on the money there. We do that a lot.

  4. Thanks for the great reminder Matt!

    David: murderer;
    Elijah: doubter & complainer;
    Noah: drunk; Peter: racist;
    Mitchell: fits right in!

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