2/12/17: Honor Where Honor is Due
It’s a nice thing to receive a pat on the back. In fact, we’re obeying Scripture when we congratulate each other. Romans 13:7 tells us, “Render therefore to all their due: taxes to whom taxes are due, customs to whom customs, fear to whom fear, honor to whom honor” (NKJ, italics added). We get all dressed up to attend awards dinners that honor our colleagues, friends, and acquaintances. We let people know when we’re receiving honors so they can come and celebrate with us. Hollywood has this down to a science with the multitudinous awards shows that air annually – the Oscars, the Emmys, the Grammy’s, the American Music Awards (AMA’s), and the People’s Choice Awards – just to name a few.
No, there’s nothing wrong with honoring someone for the work she has achieved, but Jesus makes a very pertinent case about this practice as it deals with how we relate to Him. In John chapter 5, Jesus pointedly explains who He is and the importance of our belief in Him. He says, “…He who does not honor the Son does not honor the Father who sent Him… But I have a greater witness than John’s; for the works which the Father has given Me to finish– the very works that I do– bear witness of Me, that the Father has sent Me… You search the Scriptures, for in them you think you have eternal life; and these are they which testify ofMe.But you are not willing to come to Me that you may have life” John 5:23, 36, 39-40 (NKJ). Then John 5:44 asks, “How can you believe, who receive honor from one another, and do not seek the honor that comes from the only God?” (NKJ)
Jesus makes His case for who He is – the very One sent by God, empowered to give us eternal life – yet many of us more readily work to receive honor from men rather than seek the honor that comes from God. We receive that honor from God by accepting the work and the word of Jesus Christ. That means we seek out that which Jesus would have us to do, and then we do it. Like my friend Danielle likes to say, “It’s Barney simple.”
There’s an awards show coming for the believer. We will one day all stand before God and instead of the words “and the winner is…,” we hope to hear words like those of one of Jesus’ parables: “Well done, good and faithful servant; you were faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord” Matthew 25:21 (NKJ).
Whose honor will you earn today?
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