Imperfect standards

“the word that I have spoken…the same shall judge him in the last day” (John 12:48)

Standards ebb and flow from person to person. What one likes, what one feels, what one prefers, is rejected by another.

Individuals seek to find other individuals whose standards bear relative proximity to their own.

Groups coalesce. They march. They advocate.

These standards develop into policy initiatives and social talking points. Political, social, even religious sects, form and do battle in the court of public opinion.

There are loopholes and inconsistencies on every side. Each standard is fraught with moral dilemmas, problematic semantics, and the divide between groups is fueled further by vitriol, impatience, frustration, not to mention social, political and financial reasons to utilize intellectual dishonesty in order to win arguments.

There is no actual science to these standards. Only opinion. Individual, then collective.

Jesus is the only real standard. Of truth, of holiness.

His is a standard outside our own. It requires the re-evaluation of the ones we construct. It will require the overturning of the standards we now apply. It will require the strengthening of the standards we enjoy.

Because one day, it will be His standard – not ours, not our social clubs, not our political cliques – that will judge the world.

There will be no inconsistencies, dilemmas to which we can appeal, or semantics we can utilize to lessen the force of his words.

His standard is not even attainable by us, only him.

Establishing our own perfect standard is a pipe dream.

Far better, is to seek grace. To accept the freely offered gift of salvation, and forget the silly notion that we have or will ever get everything just right.

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Rick Kelley

I began preaching in Wallace, WV (2000-2002), and worked with the church in Proctor, WV (2002-2004). I graduated from the West Virginia School of Preaching (2004), served the church in Prestonsburg, KY as pulpit minister from 2004-2014, and am currently laboring with the Massillon, OH congregation (2014-present). Outside of biblical studies, I enjoy spending time with my much better half, Samantha, and our six children (Christian, Hannah, Noah, Emma, Evan & Leah). We have an equal parts sweet and goofy Golden Retriever (Max), a rather energetic Australian Shepherd (Mallie), and a very chill Goldendoodle (Moses).

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