Summary: Titus 3:3 makes some pretty bold accusations about those who have not come to Jesus for salvation! Many will be offended by this and even declare that they have never been that bad. But, even though we all WERE that bad He di not leave us there! Praise His Name Forever!!!
I’ve Never Been THAT Bad!
“At one time we too were foolish, disobedient, deceived and enslaved by all kinds of passions and pleasures. We lived in malice and envy, being hated and hating one another.
“But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, He saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of His mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit.”
“Just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, so in Christ we who are many form one body, and each member belongs to all the others.”
Today we will be reading from Titus 3:1-8
Joe and Moe were twin brothers. They were wicked, evil men.
Proverbs 6:16-19 could have been written about them; “There are six things [Yahweh] hates, seven that are detestable to Him: haughty, conceited, egotistical eyes, a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked schemes, feet that are quick to rush into evil, a false witness who pours out lies and a person who stirs up conflict in the community.”
That WAS Joe and Moe. Wicked and evil Joe died.
Moe was looking for a preacher who would say something nice about Joe at his funeral. The only problem was that Joe had despised and lied about and injured and stirred up conflict with everyone in town including all of the pastors. No one would do Joe’s funeral.
Finally Moe publically made an offer of $10,000 to any pastor who would speak at Joe’s funeral and to everyone’s surprise, one of the most respected pastors took up the offer.
At the funeral, the sermon was short; only 48 words long. It went like this, “Joe was a rotten man. He was evil, to the core. He would murder his own mother if he thought it would bring him pleasure. Joe was just about the most rotten, sinful, wicked man who ever lived, but … compared to his brother Moe, Joe was an angel.”
Now, believe it or not, this silly joke will actually have an application in today’s message.
OK, so let’s go ahead and read Titus 3:1-8
(Prayer for help)
I don’t know if any of you have ever noticed, but, when we have a new memory Scripture I tend to have a message about it within a week or two. This one has been different.
One reason is that the Covid issue has kind of thrown everything off balance and the second is that this has been a particularly difficult one to memorize.
Regardless, it is an important Scripture as really they all are.
But, just look at verse three …’
“At one time we too were foolish, disobedient, deceitful and enslaved by all kinds of passions and pleasures. We lived in malice and envy; being hated and hating one another.”
Many of us look at that and think, “I was NEVER THAT bad”, right?
I was never a disobedient, deceitful fool!
I was never a slave to passions and pleasures!
I was never filled with animosity and bitterness and hatred and hostility and resentment and envy.
I never hated people and they never hated me!
I was never as bad as Joe and Moe.
And, Joe was never as bad as Moe, I mean, compared to Moe, Joe was an angel, right? That’s what the preacher said anyway ….
Here’s the thing. Before we came to Jesus and were filled with the Holy Spirit we WERE ALL foolish, disobedient, deceitful, enslaved people. The difference between us and others was only a matter of degree.
It is an easy thing to fall into the pit of comparison.
I’m not as bad as she is. I’m better than he is.
I will always be able to find someone who is more sinful than I am.
But, here’s the thing; God doesn’t grade on the curve.
How many know what it means to grade on the curve?
Some teachers give grades according to the actual percentage of work the student gets right. Students who score a 90 percent or better get an A. Those who score less than 65 percent get an F. And, of course there is everything in between.
Teachers who grade on the curve may give an A to the top five percent of people in the class even though the highest score was only 60 percent. They were still the best so they deserve an A and it goes on down the line from there.
But, God doesn’t grade on the curve. You cannot be good enough for heaven. If you try to do enough good works to earn your way into heaven you are living in foolish thought, you are being disobedient to God’s Word, you are being deceitful and you will still be enslaved to sin.