Many people are quick to criticize and judge others who fall into sin or fail to live up to their standards of perfection. But the truth of the matter is, none of us are perfect – no matter how much we say we love God or try to keep His commandments.
The Bible tells us that we are “saved by grace through faith” in the substitutionary sacrifice of Jesus Christ on the cross on our behalf. We must remember that, even after we are saved and spiritually born again, we are still far from being perfect. We are all a “work-in-progress” for the rest of our lives. We will still commit mistakes and sin everyday, make wrong moral choices, and fail to live up to the righteous expectations of our holy God. We even have days that our faith is weak and wonder if we are really saved at all.
But does that make us phonies? Or does anyone else have the right to judge us or question our salvation? Not at all! Even Abraham, who is considered the “father of our faith” struggled with his faith and made wrong moral choices.
In Genesis 12:10-20, we are disappointed to learn that Abram, a great man of faith, was also a man of moral weakness. At 65 years of age, Abram took his family to Egypt. Because he feared for his life, he sold his beautiful wife Sarai into adultery with the Pharaoh of Egypt. He lied about Sarai being his sister and permitted her to become the sexual plaything of the King. Fortunately God intervened before Sarai was defiled and struck Pharaoh and all his other wives and family with disease.
When Abram’s deception was exposed, Pharaoh was mad. He declared, “Why didn’t you tell me she was your wife? Why did you lie to me and say, ‘She is my sister.’?” Ashamed and humiliated, Abram, Sarai and their entire clan were expelled from Egypt.
Abram’s character weakness and failure to trust God to protect him and deliver him out of any danger shows that, this great man of faith, still had “issues”. His faith still faltered at times, and his personal works did not line up with the religion he professed.
Does that sound familiar?
I think many of us can relate to that story. I know I can. I think many of us will admit we have done things that we regret and that has brought shame to the name of Christ. When we sin and make mistakes, don’t give up; God is very forgiving, merciful and patient with us. Confess your sins to Him and promise to do better. When you fall, pick yourself up and get back in the race. Keep pressing on towards the finish line and you will ultimately win the prize.
Memorize the verse: “If we confess our sins,[to God] He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9). Remember that Jesus is the author and finisher of our faith. The good work He has started in us will be completed one day. Don’t ever give up on God – no matter what. He will never leave us or abandon us.
Dear heavenly Father, I thank you for your great mercy, forgiveness and compassion. Please forgive me of my sins today. I confess that I am weak and make mistakes. Strengthen me more and more each day and help me to live up to your holy standards. Thank you for Jesus who paid the penalty for my sins on the cross. In Jesus name I pray, amen.
– Pastor Luis Yosefus