Honor: “Showing esteem for one deserving of respect, attention, or obedience.”
Hebrews 13:18 Pray for us, for we are sure that we have a clear conscience, desiring to act honorably in all things.
Recently, I heard a conference speaker say, “I choose honor over any response I may have to situations in my life.” It was a good reminder of how easy it is to find fault, reasons to distrust, or to respond with criticism to circumstances with others.
Anger is the immediate reaction to everything that happens today. It almost seems like society has regressed to adolescence and has a tantrum on anything and everything. I have a 2-½-year-old granddaughter who is very strong-willed, and sometimes when she doesn’t get what she wants she throws a fit. This reminds me of how our society is behaving on almost every issue. Just recently a young man died in an accident at work, and the family started a riot in the store where he was killed because they demanded the store be closed to honor his death. Probably both the store and the family failed in acting honorably in light of this young man’s death. One side demanding honor … the other side neglecting honor.
For the Christian, honor is always the response we need to uphold. People will always pick and choose whom they honor and whom they don’t, but we can even show honor to people who oppose us. Of course, that is hard to do because emotions get in the way. These days we operate more from our emotions than we do our principles, and emotions are unbridled when they are not guided by principles and values. That is why the phrase, “I choose honor” was so significant to me when I heard it. Honor is a choice, and it usually is not the first reaction most of us use when we are faced with some kind of tension. I am convinced our society is less honoring because it is less God-like. We have traded the rights of the individual for the purposes and commandments of God. We don’t fear God, we don’t honor God, and we don’t know God, so the end result is selfish disrespect for everyone.
We spend more time trying to unravel racism or use racism as a root cause for everything. This is just a symptom of a much deeper problem in our lack of honor. If you don’t honor God, you will not honor people … it is that simple. Honor starts with God, then moves to honor parents, and then honors people because they are the creation of the God you honor. Anger has replaced honor, and anger is driving everything today. We have lost the art of disagreement with honor. We don't know how to disagree with respect. Life is full of disagreement, but we don't have to be disagreeable.
We have so few examples in society today of honoring those we disagree with, which is tragic. We instantly go to anger and revenge. The cancel culture of today is an example of the viciousness of disagreement with dishonor. We have learned the ways of Satan who is the greatest offender of honor. He felt he had the right to honor himself over God and become like God in every way. Satan hates people because they are the creation of God, and anything God touches, creates or endears Satan wants to destroy. Think about it. Satan dishonors life even before it is born by killing it in the womb. He dishonors God’s creation of marriage by making it into something that dishonors God. He dishonors creation itself by inventing new gender identities so people can be further deceived from the truth.
It is all about honor or the lack of it, isn’t it? God is to be believed, feared, and obeyed but dishonoring Him means we do things that are contrary to Him. The Bible says that someday every tongue will confess and every knee will bow to the glory of the Almighty. It won’t matter what you believe at that point because every human being will know God and fear God at that moment in time. You will not escape the honor and acknowledgment of who God is because no matter who you are you will honor and acknowledge Him as God.
The problem? You will acknowledge Him, but you who never have acknowledged Him in this life will fear Him in the next because instead of being a Savior to you, He will become your judge. There is nothing but truth in death. I want you to pay attention to this, “there is nothing but truth in death.” There are no more excuses, no more lies, no more dishonor when we die. Are you getting that? You will stand in truth before God and if you dishonored Him in this life, you will pay the price for that dishonor by relinquishing the free gift of eternal life provided by Jesus Christ.
‘I prefer honor’ is a great reminder of the kind of Spirit we possess as believers. Honor God and honor each other. Live life in honor.
Challenging the Culture with Truth … Larry Kutzler