In the old testament, David contemplates himself, his actions and the course of his life and he submits these thoughts as a prayer to God. Self-evaluation or self-examination is a tool and an ability God has granted us. Christians should not shy away from introspection.
David and all his contemporaries who were under the law of sin and death always desired to do what is right but lacked the ability to do so (Romans7:18). The law was good and holy. The people of God desired to obey the law. But since sin entered all flesh through one man, Adam, humanity weakened in their ability to fulfill the requirements of the Law.
“Who can discern his errors? Acquit me of hidden faults. Also keep back Your servant from presumptuous sins; Let them not rule over me; Then I will be blameless, And I shall be acquitted of great transgression. Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart Be acceptable in Your sight, O LORD, my rock, and my Redeemer.”
But all that changed with one man – Jesus Christ.
Romans 8:3-4, For what the law could not do in that it was weak through the flesh, God did by sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, on account of sin: He condemned sin in the flesh, that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.
Today our blamelessness does not come from our perfect obedience to the law but rather we are made righteous by faith in Christ who fulfilled the law.
Do we, who believe in Christ and are made righteous in Christ require self-evaluation and introspection? The bible says yes! Grace has not been given to us to live in the patterns of the flesh but rather it empowers us to overcome the effect of the tendencies of the flesh. Apostle Paul says “ consider yourselves dead to sin and alive to the God in Christ Jesus.” Sin will keep poking at us but a truly dead man has no response to this poking and prodding. On the other hand being alive to God indicates motion and growth towards God’s will and purpose for the life we have been granted.
No one is exempt from the wiles of the devil. But those who are in Christ have all that they need to resist the devil. This is precisely why the new testament keeps reminding the believer to consider himself.
In 2 Corinthians 13:5 Paul instructs the church to “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?”
Paul not only asks them to examine themselves but also tells them how to test themselves. “Do you not realize that Christ is in you?”
Are you reflecting him in every walk of your life? Are you praying with Faith the Son had in the Father? Are you serving the Kingdom with zeal? Are you reaching out in love and giving away in gladness?
Or as Peter says “To sum up all of you be harmonious, sympathetic, brotherly, kindhearted, and humble in spirit; not returning evil for evil or insult for insult, but giving a blessing instead.. sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts, always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you, yet with gentleness and reverence.” (1 Peter 3: 8-15)
The litmus test of your walk with God is evident in how much you have transformed into likeness with Christ. Today as you consider yourself and if you feel like you are failing the test, don’t be disheartened, His grace is sufficient. His strength is made perfect in our weakness.
The battle between our desire to please God and chase after sin has been won by Christ on the cross. Let us live in this victory.