The Comparison Game | Day Two
By: Megan Gover | To download the first week of this study, click here.
From a very young age, I have been picky about my shower essentials. I don’t know about you, but my soaps and shampoos and scrubs have to smell mighty fragrant. Needless to say, I was stoked when I stumbled upon a new body wash and thought it was an upcoming camping trip must. I mean, what third grader wouldn’t want to bathe in something scented like melted watermelon Jolly Ranchers?
In my mind, I thought it would be a great hit with those we were camping with. Instead of everyone smelling sweaty, stinky, and sticky, I would be radiating summer’s favorite fruit. But, I overlooked one teensy detail. Who knew mosquitoes have excellent taste in watermelon soap too?
I am not lying when I say my back was one continual mosquito bite. We tried to count how many I was inflicted with, but we stopped after 100.
ONE HUNDRED, Y’ALL.
All of a sudden the joy of using my favorite body wash was clouded out by the pain and discomfort brought by an itchy back. The effects were quite bothersome, uncomfortable, and outright painful. This is how comparisons work.
Comparisons are killjoys—things that instantly rob us of the joy that should be present. When we measure ourselves against others, our joy is taken captive. It’s robbed. It’s killed. It’s shipped off to Timbuktu.
On my camping trip, I knew mosquitoes are attracted to heavy scents, but I absentmindedly forgot the fact. Neglecting the ways your enemy operates can yield devastating results. Therefore, today, we are going to take better look at our opponent in the Comparison Game, who is peskier and more destructive than any mosquito: Satan.
Today, we are going to look at a passage in John 8, but we need to know the context of the chapter as a whole before we begin to understand its’ importance. This chapter of John’s Gospel is when Jesus claims one of His big I AM statements. Calling Himself the light of the world, he testified before the Pharisees and disciples of His authority and power.
We pick up in John 8:31 after some Jews believed Jesus when He declared He was the Son of Man.
Read John 8:31-33. According to verse 32, what sets you free?
How would you define truth?
Look up Genesis 15:12-16 and Exodus 1:1-14. Were the Pharisees correct about their descendant’s freedom?
Why do you think they were in such denial about their history and slavery?
Now read John 8:34-41. What does this passage say about the difference between a slave and a son?
Who can set people free? How does He do it?
Now, finish reading the passage, verses 42-47. The next passage might be a little confusing. However, Jesus is ultimately trying to show the Pharisees this truth: though they might be from Abraham’s descent, they were not his children in the faith. How does Isaiah 41:8 describe Abraham’s faith and relationship with the Lord?
I don’t know about you, but I believe true friends shouldn’t have the desire to kill you. So, if Jesus is the Son of God, yet is being attacked by the Pharisees, they are not living like Abraham’s children, let alone God’s children!
Who does Jesus say the Pharisees’ father is?
How does Jesus describe Satan?
Read 1 Peter 5:8. What animal is Satan compared to?
I know that was a lot to learn! However, John 8 teaches us some powerful lessons:
The truth will set you free. Sin is a slave.
The Son sets you free. Satan is a liar and murder.
Not only were the Pharisees in denial of their heritage, but they also failed to see the habitual sin they themselves were enslaved to. And the reason they didn’t see their bondage was because of their refusal to know both Christ and His Word!
Satan loves to trip us up in a cycle of lies about our identity. However, Christ wants to liberate us from anything entangling us.
Now knowing Satan’s ploys, how can you see him using comparisons to enslave us?
Ultimately, if we belong to God, we hear God. If we began to diligently choose to hear His shouts of our identity instead of the whispers of the enemy, comparisons could never chokehold our joy. End your time today thanking the Lord for being the Father of Truth and setting us free from the things that bind us.