Righteousness and Sin

Are your kids good?

I mean, I know that they're not perfect, and you wouldn't say that (and hopefully they wouldn't either). After all, we all know that all have sinned and fall short of God's glory (Romans 3:23).

But let's be honest. You've compared. I sure have. And I know my kids have.

It's easy to think, "I'm glad my kids aren't acting like that." It's easy for my kids (taking hints from comments they've heard from us) to say, "So-and-so acts so crazy!"

It's easy to get self-righteous.

And we do the same with other adults, passing verdicts like we are Judge Wapner. Whether they've had a minor struggle, or they've been caught in a deep and far-reaching sin, we wonder, "How could they do that?"

But when we look at others and their sin, we need to remember that we are much more like them than we are like Jesus.

Our kids are much more like the tantrum-throwing brats sitting three tables over at Chili's, than they are like Jesus. Our kids are much more like the foul-mouthed, angry kids at camp, than Jesus.

And we're closer to that person at church who doesn't serve, tithe, or join a community group, than we are to Jesus. We're closer to Wall Street crooks, or deadbeat dads, or neglectful moms, than our Lord.
"Because of the privilege and authority God has given me, I give each of you this warning: Don't think you are better than you really are. Be honest in your evaluation of yourselves, measuring yourselves by the faith God has given us. Romans 12:3
The only righteousness that matters is that which we receive through faith in Jesus. It's not about how good we are, but how perfect Jesus is.

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**image courtesy of mckenna71 via sxc.hu


  1. Hey Joey, thanks for this reminder. I find myself way too often comparing my kids to other kids, or myself to other people. The only comparison that needs to be made is to Jesus Christ, and in that comparison, we all fall miserably short.

    I find in myself far too often an arrogant pride that wants to rest in my own abilities or works, and I can see some of my kids wrestling with the very same thing. The challenge on my part is first off an internal struggle to grasp the gospel more clearly, then an external struggle to model and teach that to my kids, praying that the Holy Spirit will take my feeble attempts and do something wonderful with (or in spite of) them.

    1. You are exactly right in the comparison that we need to make. I guess I can often look at that and think, "I can never be like Jesus, so I had better compare myself to others."

      But, as you said, that means that I will just rely on my own skills and works. Of course, we need to be like Jesus, and God (knowing we will fail to do so) accepts us and works in our lives, despite our best efforts.