“That very day the Lord spoke to Moses, ‘Go up this mountain of the Abarim, Mount Nebo, which is in the land of Moab, opposite Jericho, and view the land of Canaan, which I am giving to the people of Israel for a possession. And die on the mountain which you go up, and be gathered to your people, as Aaron your brother died in Mount Hor and was gathered to his people, because you broke faith with me in the midst of the people of Israel at the waters of Meribah-kadesh, in the wilderness of Zin, and because you did not treat me as holy in the midst of the people of Israel. For you shall see the land before you, but you shall not go there, into the land that I am giving to the people of Israel.’ […] And there has not arisen a prophet since in Israel like Moses, whom the Lord knew face to face, none like him for all the signs and the wonders that the Lord sent him to do in the land of Egypt, to Pharaoh and to all his servants and to all his land, and for all the mighty power and all the great deeds of terror that Moses did in the sight of all Israel.” Deuteronomy 32:48-52; 34:10-12
Moses was a friend of God. The writer who finished the book of Deuteronomy named him unlike any other prophet. He was a great leader, commanding literally thousands of men, women, and children. He was wise and loved God.
And yet, Moses was not allowed to enter the Promised Land. Moses, the faithful leader of the Israelites, “did not treat [God] as holy in the midst of the people of Israel,” and was punished by not crossing into the desired land he had wandered the wilderness to see. Even he disobeyed God.
I have this habit of looking up to teachers and speakers of the Word and believing they are so much holier than me. They must have it all together. They never struggle with sin like I do. They never get angry with their children. They never dishonor their husband. I bet their house is spotless. They never make a mistake when they teach.
Regardless of what you may perceive, we all need Christ. The greatest and lowliest fall alike. Though we may have different sins, we all sin nonetheless: “None is righteous, no, not one; no one understands; no one seeks for God. All have turned aside; together they have become worthless; no one does good, not even one” (Romans 3:10-12).
We all need Christ. We all need Him to live a perfect life, fulfilling the law we could not. We all need His blood spilled to wash our sins. We all need His resurrection to raise us to new life. So don’t compare yourself to your pastor or your favorite Bible teacher—Christ is the standard, and we all fall short, so we all need Him.
God, I am sorry for the times I have compared myself to my leaders, putting them on a pedestal they were never meant to be on. Help me to remember to compare myself to Christ, where I always fall short, and I am always reminded of my great need for You. Amen.
Spend some time reflecting on how you view your pastors and teachers. Consider who you compare yourself to—to Christ, or others?