The UK government has been under scrutiny for stating its intention to break international law for the sake of a greater principle. It is not our place to criticise, but we do well to examine our own personal attitude to ‘trust’.

The Bible says that it is better not to promise than to break a promise.

Better not to vow than to vow and not pay

Ecclesiastes 5:5

But which of us has never broken a promise, sometimes even knowingly. And worse still, have we made ‘fake promises’?

One of the ten commandments is:

You shall not bear false witness against your neighbour

Exodus 20:16

In contrast to us, God is

the God of truth’

Isaiah 65:16

He is the Rock, His work is perfect; for all His ways are justice, a God of truth and without injustice; righteous and upright is He

Deuteronomy 32:4

And He cannot lie, so His promises are sure and certain:

…in hope of eternal life which God, who cannot lie, promised before time began

Titus 1:2

So whether we can trust ourselves or trust other people, we can have no doubt whatsoever that we can trust God. In this world of uncertainty and ‘fake information’ that is surely something to cling hold of.

Image by Lisa Caroselli from Pixabay

Unfair Results!

What an outcry against Ofqual about the recent exam results. There are always surprises and disappointments, but not like this. The use of an ‘algorithm’ to modify teachers’ grades has caused outrage. Some students claimed that their dedication and diligence were futile and their futures wrecked. Hence the dramatic U-turn.

Predicting or forecasting is always difficult and often imprecise. Human judgement is fallible, and algorithms like the one used cannot be fair to everyone.

But God knows everything and His judgement is always perfect. He never makes a mistake.

He is the Rock, His work is perfect; for all His ways are justice, a God of truth and without injustice; righteous and upright is He (Deuteronomy 32:4).

He is no respecter of persons:

For there is no partiality with God.

Romans 2:11

So geographical location, sex, ethnicity or status make no difference to His justice.

There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.

Galatians 3:28

He is the judge, through His son Jesus. He is the ultimate decision-maker. In the final analysis human opinion will count for nothing and there will be no right of appeal.

But there will be surprises and disappointment, nonetheless.

Jesus warned that he would reject some people and say:
‘I tell you I do not know you, where you are from. Depart from me, all you workers of iniquity’. And added that ‘There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth,when you see Abraham and Isaac and Jacob and all the prophets in the kingdom of God, and yourselves thrust out’.

Luke 13:27-28

To others, exquisite joy, when he says

‘Well done, good and faithful servant; you have been faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your lord’.

Matthew 25:23

Serving God is never futile, but the way we do this determines our eternal future. Let us read His word, the Bible, and try to please Him.

Be diligent to present yourself approved to God, a worker who does not need to be ashamed, rightly dividing [correctly handling] the word of truth.

2 Timothy 2:15

Image by tjevans from Pixabay

Body Image

We are being urged to lose weight. While this may be difficult, it is actually possible for most of us and it is for our own well-being. Although BMI is not a perfect measure, it is used by medical experts to monitor weight and associated health. And, according to the NHS, in 2018 nearly two thirds of adults in England were overweight or obese measured by BMI. A hard message to accept: most of us don’t think of ourselves as overweight. True, when we look at photos from years ago people look a ‘bit skinny’, but we look OK to ourselves.

This is partly because we compare ourselves with other people. The shape of what we consider to be ‘normal’ has changed. We do not judge ourselves by BMI but by comparison with what we see around us.

What about other aspects of our lives? Our spiritual well-being: our attitude to life, our priorities and our values; our reaction to Almighty God and His word, the Bible. God is right. He is always right, and He – alone – sets the standards for correct behaviour.

Great and marvellous are Your works, Lord God Almighty! Just and true are Your ways, O King of the saints!

Revelation 15:3

Unlike medical advice, His commands are flawless.

The law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul; the testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple .

Psalm 19:7

We might consider ourselves to be ‘pretty good’. But the Bible’s blunt lesson is that we cannot discern right and wrong by ourselves.

O Lord, I know the way of man is not in himself; it is not in man who walks to direct his own steps.

Jeremiah 10:23

So it is no good comparing ourselves with society, with what is ‘normal’. We need to compare ourselves with the supreme example: God’s son, Jesus. While it is impossible for us to be perfect like him, God asks us to try. We need to read God’s word and then to try to obey it. This is what the letter of James teaches us.

For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man observing his natural face in a mirror; for he observes himself, goes away, and immediately forgets what kind of man he was. But he who looks into the perfect law of liberty and continues in it and is not a forgetful hearer but a doer of the work, this one will be blessed in what he does.

James 1:23-25

It may seem like a hard message, but it is most definitely for our eternal well-being.

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay