For by the grace given to me I tell everyone among you not to think of himself more highly than one ought to think, but to think soberly, each according to the measure of faith that God has apportioned. Romans 12:3 NABRE
Paul is speaking to the community of Rome about how they should be pastoral, how to live their life so that through them the message of God is lived as an example, they become witnesses to what it means to be a follower living as a Christian. Paul speaks to them with authority because of the grace he has received from God, it is the grace of an apostle, as Paul states at the beginning of the letter, “Through him we have received the grace of apostleship,” (Romans 1:5). Then Paul tells them to guard their thinking, the ego can be a problem and they should be moderate, or keyed off the word soberly apply the virtue temperance, be sober in thinking of yourself. If we think too highly of ourselves there is no room for God to work in our lives. We are called to see this as a vice and so by using the virtue temperance we have a good way to counteract this unacceptable behavior. Temperance is a virtue of moderation, it keeps us from over reaching in our fallen nature, so that we live with reasonable limits. We are great in the eyes of God as His beloved, but what we really are is faithful in the measure that God has apportioned to us.
Faith for Paul is not only belief and trust in Christ but also a measure of suffering as Christ witnessed (see Philippians 1:29-30). We see how Christ lived for the Father, nothing for Himself, with belief in the Father He suffered in the name of the Father. Through Christ’s life God is glorified. We should do the same, live for God rather than inflating our own false self-image and then we too glorify God.
How do you react to success in Christ? Do you guard your ego with temperance?Through Christ's life God is glorified. We should do the same, live for God rather than inflating our own false self-image and then we too glorify God. Click To Tweet
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