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  • July 11, 2014 - Reflections

    By Jean S. Horner
    The other day while walking down a corridor in a public building, I saw what appeared to be someone walking toward me. On coming closer, I found it was my own reflection in a huge mirror. For a moment it frightened me. Somehow a full-length reflection of one’s self is a startling thing. ...


 

Daily Boost

 

August 8, 2011 - Test Season

By Greg Ebie

Another school year will soon be underway. Students will go to class, work on homework, and before long study for tests. Just showing up and doing the required work is not enough. You have to pass the test. And before all is said and done, students will also have to take their final exam. These tests are given to show a competency and retention of the subject, or put another way, teachers want to see if students have learned anything or not.

I’ve notice that my kids don’t just study for a test. They will also test themselves prior to sitting in class to take their test. Their self-examination gives them confidence for the real test because if they get the answers right when they are out of class they know they are ready to pass the test in class.

“Examine yourselves to see whether you are in the faith; test yourselves. Do you not realize that Christ Jesus is in you — unless, of course, you fail the test?” (2 Corinthians 13:5, NIV).

Our Christian life is a lot like school. It’s not good enough to just show up at church or say and do the right things from day to day. We’ve got to pass the test of salvation, and the best way to prepare for our final exam is to test ourselves in advance.

Such self-examination is necessary. Paul commands the Corinthians to test themselves (and, in turn, for us to do so as well) because of how easily we can deceive ourselves. God does not “grade on a curve” or compare us with each other. We will be judged by a higher standard. We must possess the righteousness of Christ; without it we fail the test.

Self-examination is not guessing about our spiritual condition. In the same way my kids test themselves before their teachers give them a test, we can test ourselves and know if we are in Christ or not. Paul wants us to have confidence.

The non-Christian cannot have such confidence. Satan has blinded their eyes; they are dead in their sin. But such is not the case for those who are in Christ. Our eyes have been opened so we can see; we can know that Christ is in us.

Paul tested himself. He knew that he had not reached perfection but he was determined to daily “press on toward the goal to win the prize” (Philippians 3:14). When we test ourselves and fall short, we aren’t supposed to give up either. Instead we continue to grow to maturity and “live up to what we have already attained” (Philippians 3:16).

One day we will all stand before Christ for our final exam; until then we test ourselves. How would your self-test turn out today?

— D. Greg Ebie is senior pastor of Praise Assembly of God in Garrettsville, Ohio, and an author of Daily Bread devotionals.

 

 

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