This week (and into next week) I want to focus our time here at COCT on evaluating our own spiritual state. To this end I have developed a series of questions that I hope will be helpful to you in this process. However, before we start looking at those questions I want to take just a few moments to introduce these questions and get you thinking on the same page as me.
Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you? —unless indeed you fail to meet the test!
-2 Corinthian 13:5
Before working this through this list of questions it is important to understand the purpose of these questions. Based on what 1 Corinthians 13:5 teaches, we must constantly be examining ourselves to make sure that “Jesus Christ is in [us].” This is an important task for all of us because, as Jesus taught, you will know a true follower of Jesus based on how they live their lives. That being said, we do not earn or merit a relationship with God by keeping a checklist. Salvation comes only through the work of Jesus. He has accomplished it, and we can receive the benefit of His work by putting our faith in Him. This, however, does not mean that Christians do not have any responsibility. In fact, the bible teaches that all who have been saved by Jesus have also been change by Jesus. We have been changes so that we can live like he did. This means that we must work hard to continue growing in spiritual maturity by taking advantage of the resources God has given us (i.e. the grace, the bible, the example of Jesus, the Holy Spirit, the Church, etc.). If we, as Christians, are not growing then there is a problem. Either we are not taking advantage of the resources God has given us, or we are not really “in Christ.” This is why we must examine our lives, and this is the purpose of this list of questions.