“Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves…..”
Today we live within a time when very strange societal new rules of how we are to go about our daily lives are changing just about every day. You do not have to wear a mask as long as you social distance to yes you do need to wear a mask, then to even when wearing a mask there is still a need to social distance also. Think you have been exposed, go and isolate, quarantine yourself to keep everyone else around you safe. Been exposed, get tested right away to see if you are positive or negative. Want to keep those around you safe and those with whom you come in contact with; then get the vaccination shot (twice), that’s the solution. And, oh yes, you can trust us, we’re from the government!
Just as our government is implementing what they believe to be the solution to our current problems with COVID; so does our heavenly FATHER have a plan for our spiritual problems that we have in this world in our relation to HIM. We can take what this world is using as their solution to this situation and re-apply those same solutions to our Christian walk with our LORD & SAVIOUR JESUS CHRIST!
As our verse begins here from 2 Corinthians 13:5 – “EXAMINE YOURSELVES!” We need to be tested of whether we are in the FAITH or not! Unlike the test for COVID, we do not want to be found to be negative in the FAITH, but POSITIVE in the FAITH! If we are negative, then we can walk about society with no worries in this world for we are of this world and not of GOD; and that is a bad thing for us. We need to be found positive in the FAITH! For us, we need to realize that these two forms of testing are polar opposites in the world around us. The world wants a negative test for COVID and not a positive; while GOD’s testing desires a POSITIVE test and not a negative result. As we see this world moving faster and faster away from GOD, this is also what they desire of us today. They would rather have us negative in the FAITH and definitely not POSITIVE. In society, they isolate the positive and the negative are allowed to interact with others and with the Christians they want the same thing; isolate the POSITIVE in the FAITH to their Church houses and their homes and not allow them to interact with others in society and sharing their POSITIVITY in the FAITH; while allowing the negative in the FAITH to do what they want and be who they are with no repercussions.
Then they say, wear a mask, protect others from getting infected with COVID and as Christians we are to guard our mouths and tongues from saying the wrong things to those around us: “If any man among you seem to be religious, and BRIDLETH NOT his tongue, but deceiveth his own heart, this man’s religion is vain.” (James 1:26) What we say and how we say it has an effect of others and for this reason we ourselves need to mask up on what we say and how we say it. “But the tongue can no man tame; it is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison.” (James 3:8) As we in a spiritual sense mask up to control what comes out of our mouths to those around us, we must also at the same time unmask our mouths and tongues and proclaim the message that GOD desires for us to give: “And that every tongue should confess that JESUS CHRIST is LORD, to the glory of GOD the FATHER.” (Philippians 2:11) “Whosoever therefore shall confess me (Jesus Christ) before men, him will I confess before my Father which is in heaven. But whosoever will deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven.” (Matthew 10:32, 33) For us again, let us mask up and bridle our tongue to those things that are NOT glorifying to our FATHER, but also unmask ourselves to the lifting up and edifying our heavenly FATHER to all those around us, glorifying and magnifying HIS NAME among the people of this world, showing forth HIS MERCY and GRACE!
As the world, through fear, has put mankind in isolation; we need to do the opposite and isolate ourselves from the fear of this world. “For we have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.” (Romans 8:15) The fear that this world receives is nothing to the child of GOD as we are in HIS family through which we call HIM FATHER. “For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.” (2 Timothy 1:7) As the children of GOD we can have a spirit of peace and not fear through HIS POWER & LOVE and with that HE gives us the peace of mind as the song says; “that this world is not our home, we’re just passing through.” So as the word tells us: “Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from ALL filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.” (2 Corinthians 7:1)
As the world social distances themselves from each other, so are we to separate ourselves from the influence and lifestyles that this world is offering. “Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you.” (2 Corinthians 6:17) Just as they distance themselves to keep from transmitting COVID between people, so must we keep our social distance from them to keep them from infecting and transmitting their decease of sin from affecting our lives. When we get to close to this world, it will have an effect on us and 99% of the time it will not be in a positive manner. Just like them as they social distance themselves among society, we can also social distance ourselves from them while still being in amongst society and prayerfully having a POSITIVE effect on them instead of them having a negative effect on us. We are warned in the WORD of GOD: “And be not conformed to this: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.” (Romans 12:2) This is what our lives should be like while social distancing from the world around us.
Finally, just as they have put their faith, their trust in what our government deems best for society, so should we as Christians have our total FAITH & TRUST in GOD through our LORD & SAVIOUR JESUS CHRIST! Verses I have quoted many times before, that bear repeating once again for their application is ABSOLUTE TRUTH: “TRUST IN THE LORD with ALL THINE HEART; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In ALL THY WAYS acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the LORD, and depart from evil.” No matter what is happening around us in society with all their rules about how we are to go about our lives, we just need to remember that the LORD is really in charge of them! It is HIS guidance and HIS law that we need to be attentive too and to live our lives by. HE IS the ONLY ONE we can TRUST with our lives for HE is the ONE who created us, who gives us breath, heartbeat, life and knows our end from our beginning.
As the society frets about the possibility of death due to what is happening in this world; we as Christians know that our appointed time is already written in the books of heaven. Nothing that we or any person can do in this world is going to change the date on GOD’s calendar of our lives. No social distancing, no mask, no vaccine, no trusting in what the government says is going to prolong and protect our lives, are going to change what GOD has already ordained. We need to keep our eyes, hearts and lives focused on HIM and HE will guide us through the turmoil of this world. Should we do all that we need to do in this world to be safe? Absolutely yes! But before we worry about the hazards of this world, we had better examine ourselves and be sure that we have a POSITIVE test result of our FAITH in our heavenly FATHER. That is our first priority in this life and we had better be “RIGHT” with GOD in regards to our eternal destination.
As we press on this day, let us keep GOD’s program for our safety active in our daily lives. Test POSITIVE, mask up when needed and unmask with GOD’s WORD upon our tongue, social distance while being a positive influence on those around us and isolate ourselves from the fear that mankind is promoting and TRUST GOD: “In God I will praise his word, in God I have put my trust; I will not fear what flesh can do unto me….In God will I praise his word: in the LORD will I praise his word. In God have I put my trust: I will not be afraid what man can do unto me.” (Psalm 56:4, 10,11)
Let each of us keep doing what GOD has called us to do for HIS kingdom and may HE bless us all as we FAITHFULLY SERVE HIM this day and every day of our lives.
Your brother in CHRIST,
1 Corinthians 10:31