Luke – Dec. 13

Invite ItLuke 18:18-21

We know salvation comes through faith in Jesus. Why then does Jesus tell the ruler to keep these commands? This is an example of reading carefully. Jesus DOESN’T say heaven can be gained by keeping the commands. He simply tells the man to keep them. Jesus knows this isn’t the end of the conversation; more’s coming. He’s setting up the answer to the man’s question. But before he can get there, He wants him to see his NEED. So He hits him with a dose of the law, because that’s what the law does, as Paul says in Galatians; it shows us where we fall short of God’s standard.

But Jesus begins by only listing those commands the man had done well in; things that regulated his behavior with other people. Missing is the command against coveting and all the commands related to God.

People usually assess their moral standing by criteria that affirms them. “I’m okay because I haven’t killed anyone. I’m not a thief; that is, I don’t break into people’s homes and rob them. I don’t shoplift. Paperclips, pens, and a ream of paper from work don’t count. And I haven’t cheated on my spouse. Although, that guy/gal next door is hot! But looking isn’t adultery, so I’m good.”

Here’s the point: When WE evaluate our morality, we use a criteria that allows us to come off as okay. When the Holy Spirit is the evaluator, it’s different because He reveals the holes, flaws, failure. We call that “conviction.” And since it hurts, we tend to avoid it; ignore it.

Don’t! Welcome it instead. Flatly reject self-originated evaluation (like the Pharisee in last week’s message) and invite the Holy Spirit’s inspection. His goal isn’t to just point out error; it’s to fix it, remedy it and bring forth life.