A Doctor’s Instructions
I don’t want to get too TMI-ish, but as we get older the doctors say we should do more self-examinations. Have you ever been told this?
You ladies are regularly told by your physicians to check for unusual or suspicious lumps in certain places. We men are told the same thing, just not as often (it’s not a subject we’re comfortable with).
But despite the awkwardness, all of us need to be reminded that it’s our responsibility to examine ourselves in between doctor visits. Fact is, embarrassing as it may be to discuss, a self-examination can mean the difference between life and death.
An Apostle’s Instructions
But as awkward as it is to discuss our bodies, the spiritual lives of people tend to be much more private and less likely to be examined. Yet, what does the Apostle Paul (a true Doctor of the Faith) recommend?
Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates? – 2 Corinthians 13:5 (KJV)
Or, as another translation interprets it…
Examine yourselves to see if your faith is genuine. Test yourselves. Surely you know that Jesus Christ is among you; if not, you have failed the test of genuine faith. (NLT)
Believe it or not, there are many, many people who think they are in perfect spiritual health, but in reality, they are terminal. Consider the following examples.
- Bob goes to church every day the doors are open, including cleaning day.
- Henry gives 20% of his income and 10% of his time to the church. If there’s a need, ask Henry.
- Margaret goes to a fundamental church, uses the “right” translation of the Bible, and never wears anything but a long dress (except when she wears culottes to the beach).
- Mary would never say a dirty word, tell an off-color joke, or even permit foul language in her presence.
- Sharon put aside marriage and gave her life to helping orphans in the streets of Mumbai.
- Frank and Karen have Bible studies in their home, take the kids to Sunday School, have gold crosses in every room, not to mention on their necks.
- A rich young ruler has kept ALL the commandments (not just the big 10), even since he was a boy.
Are you like Bob or Mary? What about Sharon or Frank and Karen? Are the above people spiritually healthy, or could there be hidden cancer not yet removed?
Remember Ephesians 2:8-9? Works don’t save people; faith in Christ does. It’s not about the life you live; it’s Who’s life is in you.
Look, I’m not an M.D. or an apostle, but if you’d like my advice, here’s what I have to offer.
- Listen to your doctor and do what you need to – check for those lumps and things. Your life could depend on it.
- Listen to the words of Paul and do a spiritual self-examination. Is your faith genuine?
- Go to the top of this blog and click on the “Eternal Life” tab and consider what is written.
Don’t neglect the health of your body… or your soul.