It’s so easy for me to compare myself to the sins of others, to use them as my measuring stick. We all do this, we all justify our actions and inactions because we have mitigating circumstances that serve us well. But Jesus has none of it:
In Luke 18, Jesus tells a story; notice how Luke begins the passage:
To some who were confident of their own righteousness and looked down on everyone else…
For those of us who think we have it all together, that have done all of the correct rituals and have perfect Sunday attendance, that have mastered the skills necessary to convince everyone of how holy we really are- know that our carefully constructed suit of fig leaves has not fooled God.
John, in his first letter, addresses this situation:
Jesus has always existed, from before the beginning. And, he’ll exist after the end. I’m telling you this because I desire for you to join those of us who believe in him. I want you to be in a real relationship with the Father, and with the Son: Jesus Christ. But that’s not all.
There is no darkness on God, only light. Because of this, you cannot live in darkness as one who claims to be in the light- this makes you a liar. When we join him in this light, it means that we’ve been purified by him, his blood.
There are many that claim that the sins of others are “worse”, and even that they have no sins. This is the deceit of self. We must stop the self-deceit and confess them to Jesus, and he will forgive us. Why? Because he said that he would. And he alone is honest, faithful and just. But he won’t just forgive, he’ll make us righteous.
If we continue to deny that we are in fact sinners, we are accusing God of lying. And when we accuse him of lying, he’ll not be in relationship with us.
Adopted from 1 John 1.