2 Peter 3:10-13 – “But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, in which the heavens will pass away with a great noise, and the elements will melt with fervent heat; both the earth and the works that are in it will be burned up. 11 Therefore, since all these things will be dissolved, what manner of persons ought you to be in holy conduct and godliness, 12 looking for and hastening the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be dissolved, being on fire, and the elements will melt with fervent heat? 13 Nevertheless we, according to His promise, look for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells.” NKJV
That question is too easy so maybe I should have asked, “What kind of person are you?” “What kind of person do others think you are?’ “What kind of person does God see when He looks at you?” Maybe even, “What kind of person are you becoming?” All legitimate questions but the bottom line is WHO ARE WE?
There is coming a time when the Lord will return and all will stand before Him giving account of our lives. The apostle Peter submitted the thought that with that in mind, “What manner of persons ought you to be….” However he went beyond that question and qualified it by saying, “…IN holy conduct and godliness…” So it is not just what I appear to be but what I am in my heart that is the issue. I hear little preaching today about holiness and too often we allow ourselves a pass on conduct rather than facing the reality that one day we will stand before God and NOTHING will be unexposed, hidden, or secret. We may have hidden it from everyone but He did not miss it. He saw it, heard it, felt it, and knew it. We have a remedy and that is repentance where He applies His grace and casts it as far as the East is from the West never to be charged to our account.
Through years of ministry I have observed people strive desperately to maintain an appearance for public consumption but having seen them with the mask off knew it was merely a front. I have wept before the Lord over my own heart as I was brought face to face with the reality that my appearance did not match my heart and while outside it appeared to be spotless inside there was stain that had not been taken to the Cross. After all, I was the pastor or preacher and could never expose my human side for what would people think. I have learned to be less concerned with what man thinks of me than what God knows about me. I believe that if I keep my heart right with Him and allow Him to live through me as the man He wants me to be it will have a far greater impact on lives than if I live a life that is a charade. I may say and do all the right things but if my heart is not filled with His holiness and godliness it will ultimately be nothing more than a tinkling cymbal or a sounding brass.
Our pursuit should be HIM and in pursuing Him we are seeking to manifest Him to the world and He is HOLY and GODLY. There is never pretense with Jesus and should not be with us. As I wrote yesterday instead of excusing our failures by citing our human frailty let’s focus on His perfection and seek to walk in His fullness. Yes we are human but He is our Redeemer. Yes we have sinned but He has washed us. No we have not yet attained but we should be pressing toward the mark. The old saying, “We are the only Bible some people will ever read, so what is the gospel according to you?” is appropriate and worthy of remembering daily.
May God be with you as you go through your day!