Bob Dylan sang in the mid 1960’s that the times they-are-a-changin. They certainly have changed but I don’t think he or anyone else could have anticipated just how radical that change would be or how quickly it would sweep over us. Some changes have been positive and necessary, a lot however have not. Evil has become good, and good has become evil. Most Christians feel like they are treading on egg shells when they speak about moral absolutes. The Bible however is clear and leaves us in no doubt about right and wrong.
The Bible is also very clear that even though we are Christians, we have known what it is to enjoy and practice the same things as the unconverted. We are simply sinners saved by grace and we share the same fallen nature as everyone else.
1 Cor 6:9-11, “Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God……….. And such were some of you. But you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God.”
It is beneficial not only to be mindful that we are in Christ, but to remember what we were. “And such were some of you”. It is very easy to fall into a holier than thou mentality. The more perverse society becomes the greater the temptation to self-righteousness and to hold others in contempt. John Newton had Deut 15:15 printed above the fire place in his study – “You shall remember that you were a slave in the land of Egypt, and the Lord your God redeemed you” He never wanted to forget where he had come from and the debt he owed to God’s amazing grace. The apostle Paul reflected upon his former days minus the spectacles of nostalgia – I was formerly a blasphemer, a persecutor, and an insolent man; I am the chief of sinners (1 Tim 1:13-15). I was a covetous man (Rom 7:7).
Do not forget from where you came, or how far you have to go. It will help you to live thankfully and dependently upon the Lord. It will be a deterrent to self-righteousness. It will encourage a sympathetic spirit to the lost people of this world who are still to receive the grace which undeservedly came to you.