If you have your bibles…

I’ve been reading the letters of the New Testament via bibleplan.org. Today I read Rom 2 and was blown away by verses 17-21. I’m so NOT a bible teacher but I can give a little context. Paul is writing to the church in Rome. See details in Romans chapter 1. He is laying out the sin problem we humans have and how none of us are immune.

Now when I read this, since I’m not Jewish, I substitute the word “Christ follower” in v 17

17 You who call yourselves Jews are relying on God’s law, and you boast about your special relationship with him. 18 You know what he wants; you know what is right because you have been taught his law. 19 You are convinced that you are a guide for the blind and a light for people who are lost in darkness. 20 You think you can instruct the ignorant and teach children the ways of God. For you are certain that God’s law gives you complete knowledge and truth.

21 Well then, if you teach others, why don’t you teach yourself? You tell others not to steal, but do you steal? 22 You say it is wrong to commit adultery, but do you commit adultery? You condemn idolatry, but do you use items stolen from pagan temples? 23 You are so proud of knowing the law, but you dishonor God by breaking it. 24 No wonder the Scriptures say, “The Gentiles blaspheme the name of God because of you.” – New Living Translation

Again, I am not a bible teacher. I can just tell you what comes to mind when I read this:

  • Hypocrisy is not a good thing.
  • If you’re boasting about following all the rules, you darn well better be following all the rules without a slip up.
  • There’s no possible way to perfectly follow all the rules so boasting automatically causes hypocrisy.
  • So then, those who don’t follow Christ, see you and think bad things about God because of how you say one thing and do another.

OK, so that sucks. Fortunately, Paul, well Jesus really, lets us off the hook so to speak by the time he gets to Romans 5.

All this to say, do non-believers/followers in Christ (and/or our children) blaspheme God because of you me?


3 responses to this post.

  1. I’m so imperfect. I make mistakes all the time, but never claim to be perfect or righteous, just forgiven, just doing the best I can when I can.

    I don’t think, however, that I set a bad example for all to see most of the time. Oh, my family and friends see my bad side from time to time, sure, but I’m not out flaunting bad behavior, then coming to church smiling on Sunday.

    We can’t expect non-believers to act Christ-like, but we should expect ourselves to do so. And especially those in leadership roles in our churches. Their actions are witnessed by even more people.


  2. I have heard that on the day of judgement…

    “How would you do if it were your family judging you.”


    It’s pretty easy to fool everyone else.


  3. Hey, Joni. Been off the blogosphere for a while. I know this has been up for a while but it’s a cool passage . What I hear most is… stop being the morality police. Instead of worrying about what others are doing so wrong (isn’t that why non-believers often blaspheme God?…when we are quick to judge and condemn them?), why don’t I just worry about what God does or doesn’t want me to do.


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