When you look in the mirror, what do you see? Obviously, you see your reflection. Every day, we look into the mirror to examine ourselves, look for faults we need to fix, and ensure we look presentable. However, do you know that we also need to look into the spiritual mirror to help us examine ourselves?
Self-examination is a crucial part of our spiritual growth. When we look at our spiritual mirror, what do you see? Do you see mostly your carnal and worldly attitude? Or do you see the character of God the Father and Jesus Christ reflected back to you?
We need to examine ourselves all year round. However, it is during this time, as we approach the Passover, that we take a long, hard look at where we stand before God. We are admonished to partake the Passover in a worthy manner. If not, there is a dire and horrible consequence. We will be eating and drinking damnation upon ourselves (I Corinthians 11:26).
So what must we do so we can be counted worthy to partake of the Passover emblem? The Apostle Paul tells us, “Let a man examine himself” (verse 27).
The question now is, how should we examine ourselves? In this blog, let me share with you three ways on how we can partake of the Passover emblem in a worthy manner. We can also use these three methods to help us examine ourselves every day of the year.
Point no. 1: Examine your faith
In II Corinthians 13:5, we read:
“EXAMINE yourselves as to whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Do you not know yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?—unless indeed you are disqualified.”
The word examine comes from the Greek word, peirazo, which means to “scrutinize and try.” We need to examine ourselves whether we are in the faith or not.
There is always a chance for us to get deceived. That’s why we are told to be like the Bereans who received the word of God with ALL READINESS. However, they did not stop there. They also searched the scriptures daily (Acts 17:11).
Whether we are new or old in the church, we must not just receive doctrines without really looking into the Bible ourselves. It doesn’t mean that if the church leaders say this and that, we just blindly believe. We also do our own investigation because, in the process, we all learn and grow. We are able to prove all things (I Thessalonians 5:21). By doing so, we can develop more confidence and faith in what we believe.
In addition to that, Paul said to test yourselves. Now, the Greek word used in the word test is dokimazo, which is a stronger term compared to the Greek word peirazo. It means to test as to metals.
For blacksmiths, they need to test a metal through intense heat and reveal its true identity. A blacksmith who wants to know the real quality of a metal does not just sit down and examine it visually. But he actually dokimazo the metal. He would use fire to test it.
This is where the second point comes in.
Second point: examine your works
We read in Galatians 6:3-5:
“For if anyone thinks himself to be something, when he is nothing, he deceives himself. But let each one examine his own work, and then he will have rejoicing in himself alone, and not in another. For each one shall bear his own load.”
From this scripture, we can see that we must examine our works. Again, we can see the danger of deception from this verse. It says that if you think of yourself more highly than what you really are, then you are just deceiving yourself.
So, what’s the solution? What should we do to avoid being deceived in this way? It says, let everyone examine his own work. We need to ensure that our work, deeds, and actions are in agreement with our faith.
It is not enough to learn God’s way. We must apply what we learn and employ them in our lives.
It is not what we know that will save us. It is what we do with what we know.
Even if you have a photographic memory, memorize everything in the Bible, and quote bible verses at will, all of them will boil to nothing if you don’t apply them in your life.
Examine your works. Whether you are applying what you learn or not. We know that it is the Sabbath, and still, we are breaking it. We know that murder is bad, and still, we hate our brothers. We know that idolatry is bad, and still, we put something between God and us. We are aware that adultery is bad, and still, we watch porn and the list just goes on and on.
Now after examining our works, we will have rejoicing in ourselves and not in others. This means that we don’t do good works because we want to impress others or gain their approval. We don’t need their applause and recognition. We simply do good works out of love for God and for other people.
To effectively examine ourselves, we need to read the Bible and see what God expects from us. This brings us to the third and final point.
Third point: Examine yourself through the perspective of God
“Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. Point out anything in me that offends you, and lead me along the path of everlasting life” (Psalms 139:23-24, New Living Translation).
We need to remember that we CAN’T properly examine ourselves without the help of God. We need to pray for God to show us our hidden sins and be ready to accept those faults, repent of them, and change our wicked ways.
When examining ourselves, let us not use other people as our standard. We can’t look at others and say, “I’m better than this person and that person. I guess I’m okay.” No, that’s not how you examine yourself.
The Bible is like a mirror. You don’t look in the mirror just to examine what it looks like and how beautiful the mirror is. You look in the mirror to examine your appearance and correct anything that needs to be changed.
In the same way, we don’t just look at our Bible and praise how beautiful its content is. We need to read the Bible, identify our faults, and do our best to change them.
I hope brethren that you remember these three points and apply them before the Passover and every day of the year. We need to examine our faith, examine our works, and examine ourselves through God’s perspective.
Now, look into the mirror. After examining yourself, what do you see?
Do you see yourself becoming more like God and less like yourself?
When you compare yourself from that you are last Passover and now, do you see yourself spiritually growing or spiritually dying? Are you the same old person as you were before?
Finally, when you look into the mirror, do you see a Philadelphian or a Laodicean?
Brethren, let us all examine ourselves. It is my sincerest hope that we partake of the Passover emblem in a worthy manner.