My dad was a grocery store owner when I was a boy. This enterprise had many perks. During the years that followed WWII the nation was required to use rationing stamps to purchase certain food and clothing items. As a grocery owner my dad could only sell certain items to folks that had the proper rationing stamps. He was required to collect and deposit these stamps with a government agency. Some of the products as I recall, that required stamps were, butter, sugar, bacon, pork, ham and beef. We were never lacking any of these. I enjoyed easy access to the ice cream freezer and candy counter, a boy's dream come true.
Some of the perks were not so perky to me. For instance I had several jobs that I just out-right detested. (1) Every two weeks the grocery order had to be unpacked and shelved. (2) Every week I had to transferring 100 pounds of potatoes into bags of five-pounds. (3) Once a week my job was to rack-up the returned empty soda bottles according manufacturer. (4) The job that was the worst of the worsted was the annual inventory that told us our profit or loss. My dad was a great teacher. I learned from him how to make hoagies, butcher a side of beef, and arrange meat in the showcase, display fruits and vegetables. All in all he was a wonderful mentor and I was happy in the family enterprise.
Just as my family had to take a business inventory to determine our profit or loss, so the believer needs to check-up on his state of bring. Lets look at an inventory from the Old Testament.
King Belshazzar gave a great feast for 1,000 of his nobles, and he drank wine with them. While Belshazzar was drinking the wine, he gave orders to bring in the gold and silver cups that his predecessor, Nebuchadnezzar, had taken from the Temple in Jerusalem. He wanted to drink from them with his nobles, his wives, and his concubines. So they brought these gold cups and the king and his nobles, his wives, and his concubines drank from them. While they drank from them they praised their idols made of gold, silver, bronze, iron, wood, and stone. Suddenly, they saw the fingers of a human hand writing on the plaster wall of the king’s palace, near the lampstand. The king himself saw the hand as it wrote, and his face turned pale with fright. His knees knocked together in fear and his legs gave way beneath him. Daniel was summoned by the king to interpret the wall writing.
Daniel 5:25-28 (NLT) 25 “This is the message that was written: MENE, MENE, TEKEL, and PARSIN. 26 This is what these words mean: Mene means ‘numbered’—God has numbered the days of your reign and has brought it to an end. 27 Tekel means ‘weighed’—you have been weighed on the balances and have not measured up. 28 Parsin means ‘divided’—your kingdom has been divided and given to the Medes and Persians.” As God had judged Nebuchadnezzar’s pride by removing him from the throne, so He would judge Belshazzar’s pride by taking the kingdom from him and giving it to another people. This judgment was written in the words that appeared on the plaster. (1) Mene means ‘numbered’—God has numbered the days of your reign and has brought it to an end. (2) Tekel means ‘weighed’—you have been weighed on the balances and have not measured up. (3) Parsin means ‘divided’—your kingdom has been divided and given to the Medes and Persians.”
2 Corinthians 10:12 (NKJV) For we dare not class ourselves or compare ourselves with those who commend themselves. But they, measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise.
The fact is our measuring devise must be God’s standard. That is the truth as revealed in scriptures. John 17:17 (NKJV) Sanctify them by Your truth. Your word is truth. James 1:22 (NKJV) But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.
The truth causes us to put off the old sinful self and put on the new man. Colossians 3:5-11 (NKJV) 5 Therefore put to death your members, which are on the earth: fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry. 6 Because of these things the wrath of God is coming upon the sons of disobedience, 7 in which you yourselves once walked when you lived in them. 8 But now you yourselves are to put off all these: anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, and filthy language out of your mouth. 9 Do not lie to one another, since you have put off the old man with his deeds, 10 and have put on the new man who is renewed in knowledge according to the image of Him who created him, 11 where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcised nor uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave nor free, but Christ is all and in all. Ephesians 4:32 (NKJV) And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God in Christ forgave you.
God’s standards are the reality of TRUE FAITH and RELIGION.