Who are we and who do people see us to be? I continue to be amazed by how people conclude and write off one another by judging one another. Only God can truly see into the heart, motives, intentions, desires, aspirations, energising of each person and know each of us as to who we really are; why we do the things we do, why we say the things we say, why we think the things we think, etc. Thankfully, there is a day of reckoning when what every one say, and what everyone do will be brought before the Lord and judged righteously (Matthew 12:36-37; Acts 17:31). How then do we judge righteously like Jesus?
Without seeing the heart like God does, it would have been so easy to reach the following wrong judgments like the following people in the Bible:
- Samuel thought that Eliab the oldest son of Jesse was to be king but the Lord said that he was refused (1 Samuel 16:7)
- Eliab accused David of pride and insolence when all David had was confidence in the Lord (1 Samuel 17:28)
- Michal, David’s first wife, regarded David as one of the base and immorally shameless fellows when David danced before the Lord freely (2 Samuel 6:20)
- Shimei of Saul’s clan, regarded David as bloodthirsty man and a rascal, throwing stones at him, saying that David was caught in his own evil (1 Samuel 16:7-8)
- The Pharisees regarded Jesus as demon possessed and said that He cast out demons by Beelzebub, the ruler of the demons (Matthew 12:24).
- Jesus was delivered to Pilate by the Jews who view Him as an evil doer (John 18:30).
- The Pharisees hired their best orator and labelled the apostle Paul as a plague, a disease, a creator of dissension (Acts 24:5).
- Our Lord Jesus has told us not to judged because when we do so, we are actually judging ourselves by our own attitude (Luke 6:37). Jesus told us that men will hate us, exclude and excommunicate us, revile us, and cast out our name as evil (Luke 6:22).
How then do we learn to judge righteously and lovingly the way Jesus does, without bringing condemnation to ourselves? (Yes, those who judged wrongly will be condemned in this life and in the next life). To truly understand oneselves and who others are, we only have to look at five areas:
- What is in a person’s heart? Only God knows each person’s inner heart and inner workings and motivations
- What is in a person’s mind? Expressions of the mind can reveal explorations and thinking processes and not necessarily intentions; eg. Elijah’s desire to die was expressed but he did not really wanted to die otherwise, he would have let Jezebel killed him (1 Kings 19:4)
- What is in a person’s soul? God saw the inner emotional loneliness of Elijah that even Elijah did not know, and told him to appoint Elisha as his servant and prophet after him (1 Kings 19:14, 16).
- What is in a person’s actions? David’s actions in taking other wives during his years as a fugitive might have stumbled Michal so much that she can no longer see any good in David (2 Samuel 6:20).
- What are a person’s strength and weaknesses? Always a person’s strength is their weakness and their weakness a potential strength. We should never reject a person based on their failures or weaknesses because those are the same areas of potential strength.
Since this blog is like my diary, I hope through the years, I can be more and more embolden to share all of my thoughts, feelings and viewpoints so that people will know the inner workings of my heart, mind and soul and not just know me from the outward ministry point of view. As we all know, what we see of ourselves and what others actually see of us can be a very different picture. As we all grow in Christlikeness, through time the two view points of human experience can be synchronize with God’s view point and destiny for all of us in Christ. Anyway, here is a self analysis of myself based on the above five areas, with much room to improve, of course:
- The heart – I have always sought to love God with all my heart, mind, soul and strength as often as I can consciously do so. And have always sought to love everyone as much as Jesus loves. The expressions of it might not always come out right but that has always been the core of my heart, and God our Father, our Lord Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit knows which is why His presence and love still continues to flow, no matter how imperfectly I expressed myself in God through word or deed.
- The mind – I am a dreamer and an explorer in words, imagination and thoughts. Knowing that there are physical boundaries of space, time and barriers; I have many times allowed my mind in its quest for knowledge, understanding and wisdom explored in all areas of human knowledge and science. In these areas, I consider all possibilities, all situations, all scenarios, all extremes without necessarily acting on them. It is in imagining and allowing myself to think through all possibilities and extremities that I can then philosophically find the balance between two extremes, which sometimes come out in my teaching in one sentence but probably took days or weeks or months of thinking through. This is not the normal mind, I must confess, but that is the way God made me and in the mind, I allow myself “to go where no man has gone before” :-) (Star Trek phrase). I do finally compare all knowledge with the Bible to draw the final conclusions but this gift of understanding (Daniel 1:17) is to me not something I can own, it is purely the gift of God to enable me to serve the body of Christ as a teacher, challenging traditions and perceptions handed down to us wether it be philosophy, science, biology, physics or traditional Christianity. There are still many areas of research and writing of books that I am doing, so I am still learning in all areas (Hope to at least complete the portion of knowledge we can acquire on this side of life before entering eternity living to 120 years, if God so pleases).
- The soul – my soul areas have much to grow in and many times have found myself trying to balance the emotional soul, which desires affection and companionship, with the intellectual mind which desires aloneness and concentration. I have yet to explore all the dynamics of the human soul and sometimes have an intellectual curiosity to all the colours of the soul or psyche as the Greek word calls the soul.
- The actions – always in every way, I have sought in my expressions of actions to bring blessing, benefit, love, kindness and caring to everyone I meet and come to know. I have never at any time in my whole life ever sought to do harm or hurt anyone. Of course, in human life and affairs, our expressions are not always perfect and we unintentionally hurt others when we should not but never has there been intention to hurt or harm anyone or do wrong. I always try to pursue the goal that all who come across my life in any shape or form would be blessed and benefited in some manner, always.
- Strengths and weaknesses – I would regard my greatest strength to be love and my greatest weakness to be love. There are four types of love: agape, phileo, storge and eros. Agape love is God’s love, phileo love includes both spiritual and soul love, storge love is family love and eros love is physical love reserved for husband and wife. The gospel of John and his epistles remain my favourite books in the Bible. I don’t think that I have learned all of the various aspects of love yet but hope to end this life and ministry as an apostle of love like John was. No other gospel (Matthew, Mark, Luke) saw Jesus through the eyes that John saw Jesus. We have much to learn from the apostle John.
Friday night tomorrow, all night prayer…always looking forward to that. Hopefully, we can stream it live tomorrow. God bless each of you.