Sermon Illustrations

HIGHER STANDARD OF GOD

Paul very much emphasized that we are responsible to others. Not responsible for them but to them. We are held to a high standard (at least we should be) by our own conscience, by others, and by God.

Too often we make excuses such as not knowing that something was happening. "I don’t if my clothes have been made by children in foreign countries making pennies a day so that I can enjoy inexpensive clothing."

"I don’t what the policies are of Folger’s coffee."

"I don’t know what KFC’s policies are in regard to purchasing chickens that have been inhumanely treated."

We claim that we don’t know often because we look the other way. We don’t want to know. We don’t want to have a higher standard. Ignorance is bliss. Don’t ask. Don’t tell. I can’t possibly be held accountable for something that I didn’t know about.

Yes and no. Here is a matter of conscience and freedom. We have so many opportunities and resources to find out information even when companies don’t want us to know and want us to remain ignorant. I believe that we each will be held accountable for much more sin than the church has in the last century really told us about. If we have looked the other way. If we have not even made the effort to get the real story. When we refuse to investigate, I believe we sin. We fail in our witness. We fail to uphold God’s standards of justice and mercy. Will Jesus say to us, "I never knew you." "But Lord, we preached salvation in your name. We prayed for people. We worshipped you. We sang your songs." "But I never knew you."

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