Recently I have been watching a detective story on TV. There has been a time in my life, when I did that often. (Of course I highly appreciate any Christian recommending abstaining from TV entertainment in order to gain time for personal prayer and bible reading.) Nevertheless this movie gives me some inspiration for today’s post.
What are you looking for, if you (ever) should watch a whodunit? Some might be interested in the techniques and tricks of the evildoers. Others might watch out for aggressive scenes in order to channel their own aggressive feelings. There also would be TV watchers who specially enjoy the relief when finally the evildoer is identified and caught.
Of course by now you will understand what I am heading for. Love “rejoiceth not with iniquity but rejoiceth with the truth.” (1 Corinthians 13:6/KJV).
Perhaps in such (TV) occasions you can also see what priorities you have and what you get excited about. Still I must admit sitting in front of a TV screen is not the most likely way how you can show love to others.
In the late Roman Empire in the city of Rome many people were kind of enjoying cruel games. This included watching gladiators fighting each other until one of them would be killed. Or occasionally the arena would provide scenes of real people being exposed to hungry lions. Please note that what you spend your time with and what you enjoy tends to influence your values.
Jews used to study the Old Testament law and the writings of the prophets in their synagogue services. They were interested in righteous living. They were upholding some ethical standards that by no means were common to all their contemporary nations.
They sought to be truthful. They wanted to be true to the commandments of God.
Saul of Tarsus was a man very zealous for the laws of God. Yet one day on the road to Damascus when the Lord appeared to him he realised he had missed God in some very important aspects.
He had been persecuting Christian believers. The Lord showed him that he actually had been fighting his God.
Our ethical efforts may be insufficient in some ways. We might have some blind spots. We are subject to preconceived ideas and to prejudice. We tend to look at things in ways similar to what the people in our environment think.
More serious studies of biblical ethics might help. Yet will we really reach the mark?
Jesus could say about himself: “I am… the truth…” (John 14:6). He was the only man that lived his life without sin. He did fulfil the divine law. He was righteous in all his doings.
We might find it hard to press forward to find the truth in aspects of our lives. As we look to Jesus we find someone who has been a good example worth following. He also wants to give us strength and newness of life as we turn from our sinful ways and entrust our lives to him.