Last week we found that being a Christian means becoming a New Being. Today, we learn that being a New Being requires that we measure up to the New Plumb Line.
In construction, even the ancients understood that a building that is not in line with the forces of gravity will soon fall. They began using a plumb bob, as we call it, to make sure their vertical structures were straight up and down. The other great invention was using a cup of water on horizontal stone or wood to see if it was level. With those two tools, they were ready to build the pyramids.
God gave to Amos the unenviable task of telling the people of Israel, and the king in person, that they would suffer greatly. Why? Because they did not measure up to the plumb line. They chose to ignore God and had to pay the price.
When an expert in the scriptures questioned Jesus, the Son of Man pulled out his plumb bob. The expert agreed that he was to love his neighbor but wanted to know if that applied only to the people across the street, in his block, his town, or what. Jesus told the story of the Samaritan and concluded by saying, there is your plumb line.
Two thousand years later, we are still trying to limit our neighbors to those we like. Surely, Jesus did not mean a terrorist bomber is our neighbor?
An interesting study was done in Great Britain recently. About thirty or so volunteers were invited to have their DNA analyzed. As a part of the process, each person spoke before the test about the groups of people they most disliked or even hated. When the results were shared, many of them contained a high percentage of DNA in common with the very people they professed not to like.
In the opening of his letter to Colossae, Paul wrote, For we have heard of your trust in the Messiah Yeshua and of the love you have for all God’s people. Both spring from the confident hope that you will receive what is stored up for you in heaven. You heard of this earlier in the message about the truth. This Good News has made its presence felt among you, just as it is also being fruitful and multiplying throughout the world in the same way as it has among you since the day you heard and understood the grace of God as it really is. CJB
Those faithful followers lived their lives straight and level, as measured by God.
Be righteous and do good.