1 Corinthians 11:28
“But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup.”
The greatest examination that can ever be done is the examination of yourself with the help of the Holy Spirit. You will find out what you are like when the Holy Spirit of God guides you into your self-examination. If you try to examine yourself through your own power, you will only see yourself through biased and prideful eyes. You will never see what you need to fix when you look at yourself with a biased look.
The word “examine” means to inspect, scrutinize, or to analyze. In other words, when God commands you to examine yourself, He is saying that you need to have a total inspection of yourself, scrutinizing every action and motive, and then analyzing the results you find so that you can change the areas that need changing. There are four things God commands the believer to examine in the Scriptures that I would like you to examine today.
First, examine your heart. Psalm 26:2 says, “Examine me, O LORD, and prove me; try my reins and my heart.” There are two things you need to scrutinize when examining your heart. First, you need to make sure your motives for serving the LORD are right. You know why you do what you do, and you need to make sure your heart is right with God. It doesn’t matter how others see you; it is what you know your heart to be in your service towards God that matters. Second, you need to examine your emotions towards God. If your heart motives are right with God, you will find your emotions will be right with God. True excitement happens towards spiritual things when your heart’s motives are right with God. If you get more excited about the things of the world than you do with the works of God, the emotions of your heart are not right with God. You can’t separate the excitement of the believer and the true motives of the heart.
Second, examine your testimony. 1 Corinthians 9:3 says, “Mine answer to them that do examine me is this,” Paul knew his testimony with mankind was right because he had done right in serving God. When your heart is right with God, you will find that your Christian testimony will be right. When you are right with God, you will also be right with mankind. Mankind may not like you and what you do for God when you are right with God, but they will never be able to point to your testimony and accuse you of doing wrong.
Third, the verse above says to “examine yourself.” In other words, examine what you know that you do. What you do in public does matter to God, but what you do in private also matters to Him. Don’t think that you can live a private life of sin without it eventually leaking out for everyone to see. A private life of sin always reveals itself in time. If you don’t want your private life of sin to be revealed, you had better get right with God concerning what you do in private.
Fourth, examine your faith. 2 Corinthians 13:5 says, “Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith…” You need to regularly examine yourself to be sure you have not changed. Change happens gradually, and many never see how they changed what they believed until they are way off from where they used to be. My friend, if what you used to believe was right, it is still right today no matter what society dictates. Examine your faith to be sure that what you believe today is the same as what God’s Word has always taught.