One of the clearest descriptions, I think, of what a true Christian looks like is found in Philippians 3:3. Who knows the three things that are said there?
The true circumcision – what do they look like? No confidence in the flesh. That’s one.
What are the other two? They glory or boast, some translations say, in Christ Jesus.
What’s the other one? They worship in the Spirit. But they boast in Jesus Christ.
You know how you can tell the true Christian? They boast in Christ. Isn’t that always a dead giveaway? When we find people that profess to be Christians, but you just don’t hear anything about Christ, it’s very suspect. Very suspect. People can talk about religion. They can talk about “God.” You know, you listen to some people and they talk about God this, God this, God this, but there’s never anything of Christ. I’ll tell you one thing God does when He saves a person. He makes them a lover of Jesus Christ. Jesus becomes our all. And so, if we boil this down, consider Jesus to the end that you might become more confident in Him.
But if we’re going to add a little more to that summary, we might say this: Consider Jesus by comparing Moses to Jesus so that you might become more confident in Jesus. That would be a good summary, I think. But as I looked at this, I thought, but doesn’t this raise the question. Look, whoever the writer of Hebrews is – some think it’s Paul, some think it’s somebody else. I don’t think we can know for certain. But whoever he is, if we could get him here, we’d say, hey writer-of-Hebrews guy, if you want us to consider Jesus, why introduce Moses? Doesn’t that get in the way? I mean if you want us thinking about Jesus, don’t tell us about somebody else because then that gets us thinking about them. If you want us thinking about Jesus, just tell us about Jesus. And I think the writer would say, well, that’s not true. When I introduce something else and it’s for the sake of comparing them to Jesus in order to show you how much greater He is, then it’s a very useful way to get us thinking about Jesus. He doesn’t want us just thinking about Jesus in a vacuum. He wants us thinking about how much better Jesus is. Brethren, I’ll tell you this. Comparison is a massively powerful way to use our minds in order to build up our confidence.
Brethren, we need to be people who do this with our minds. We need to be people who are very studied in the art of comparison. We need to be that.
Brethren, every time you feel an idol tug at your heart; every time there’s something that competes for your affections, you need to be able to masterfully use Scripture to compare those things in your mind. Comparison is very powerful. When you set Christ side by side with anything else in your life – any possession, any love, any relationship, any money, any power, any person, any religion, any kind of philosophical thought, or the ways the world thinks – any of that – any of it. Anything. When you set it beside Jesus and carefully examine Him over against that thing, if you properly discern them both, you have to come away, what? If you discern properly, you have to come away every single time thinking that Jesus is better. Why? Because He really is better, and if you see Him for what He is and the thing where you’re comparing Him over against what it is, you have to see Him as better. And the writer of Hebrews knows this: Any time you see Jesus better than that thing, you will not walk away from Jesus Who you think is better, for the thing you think is inferior. Right? It never happens. And so the Christian, in order to stay and stand and remain steadfast and boasting – brethren, people boast in the Lord when they don’t have greater things to boast about. The guy that’s always boasting in himself boasts like that because he thinks he’s better than Christ. He may not admit it, but he thinks it.
So brethren, comparison. It’s weighty. We need to become masters at it. When you study Jesus and anything else, you come to that conclusion: Jesus is better. You don’t abandon Jesus. That’s the reality. That’s the reality. Oh, brethren, consider Jesus. He is better.