It occurred to me this morning that perhaps I am too hard on David and the other greats from the Old Testament.  I like to cast stones at them, think about what awful people they were, then question how God could have loved them, and as for David, called him a man after His own heart.  But I’ve been reading John Chrysostom lately and something clicked.  This passage is about giving alms to the poor, but I think the principle applies to more than just that.

“And if God should examine minutely each of our issues as we investigate about the poor, we would not bring to pass for ourselves one single pardon or mercy.  ‘With the judgment you judge,’ He says, ‘you shall be judged.’  Therefore, become a philanthropist and gentle toward your fellow-slave, and remit his many sins and have mercy upon him, so that you too may become worthy of the same favorable verdict from God.  What circumstances do you weave for yourself?  Why are you a busybody and why do you meddle with other folks’ affairs?  God did not command us to investigate the lives of others and demand of them accounts, and to be curious after others’ ways of life.  I wonder if He had, would many not be vexed?  Would they not say to themselves, ‘What is this?  God appointed this matter to be difficult to me.  And could it be that we can examine the lives of others?  Do we perhaps know the severity of everyone’s sins?’  Would many not have said many such things?  And now when He delivered us from all this meddlesomeness, and promised to give the complete recompense (whether they are evil or good the ones who receive our almsgiving), we cause trouble for ourselves.”
~John Chrysostom, Homily 10: A Sermon on Almsgiving, 6,25.

Ah. Conviction.

UPDATE: It occurred to me that in my half-caffeinated state, I forgot to say exactly what was so amazing about this revelation I had this morning.  It is that our God is such a gracious, loving God that He still loves us and forgives us even when we mess up again and again and again.  And that is the God I serve.  Truly awesome, right?

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