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Reality-Check the Pecking Order

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But if you show favoritism, you sin and are convicted by the law as lawbreakers. James 2:9

It’s natural for men to establish a pecking order. Whether it’s at work, playing softball, or raking leaves—if other guys are involved, you want to know where you stand. Which guys are stronger, smarter, faster, and which aren’t? But while it’s fine to get the lay of the land, it can also provide a false standard of a person’s worth. What better shows a man’s worth—a sports car and a fat stock portfolio, or the way he treats those from whom he has nothing to gain?

The message of the Gospel is not about getting in good with the Guy who can get you in the pearly gates—you can’t. It’s not about impressing heaven with earthly success—you won’t. The cross reveals an unsettling truth: we’re all on the same footing before God and the earth is shaking. But Jesus offers a hand up to rich and poor alike; the guy in the penthouse and the one in the gutter matter equally to Him.

That’s why James spoke against saving seats up front at church for the wealthy contingent; if anything, Jesus wants you to save a seat for the guy who’s lost it all, whose sin has messed up his life and hurt others to boot. Save a special place in your heart for the man with the greatest need. It’s what Jesus did for you.
 

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