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the known standard


for when Gentiles, who do not have the law, by nature do the things in the law, these, although not having the law, are a law to themselves, who show the work of the law written in their hearts“

Romans 2:14-15

For over 15 years I worked as an inspector in the aerospace industry. Precision measurement is essential in that business; if engine components do not have the correct dimensions, it could mean a catastrophic failure. If two measuring tools are giving different readings on the same part, it means that one or both of them is in need of calibration. In order to make sure our measuring tools were functioning properly, the calibration lab would use special gauge blocks, which were small pieces of steel guaranteed to be specific sizes. These functioned as our known standards. All of our measuring devices were calibrated in accordance with these standards. I remember using this as a point of departure in evangelistic encounters at work. I would point out that each one of us is a kind of “measuring device” when we morally evaluate things we encounter. For instance, Texas recently passed a law that makes abortion virtually illegal in that state. For some this is morally commendable, for others it is a moral outrage. Both sides feel they are “measuring” the situation correctly and that the other side is clearly wrong. Only the Christian, however, can account for what is going on here. The Christian knows that morally (and rationally) speaking, there is a known standard that we must get our thinking calibrated to. That known standard is the word of God. We also know that God has sewn an awareness of His moral standards into every human heart (Romans 2:14-15). Like measuring devices that have stopped working properly and are in need of calibration, however, fallen man’s ability to morally evaluate things properly, and his desire to do so, have become flawed, corrupted, and compromised by sin (Romans 1-3). In Christ alone our great problems are solved. In Him we have forgiveness for those times when we failed to live in accordance with God’s known standards (Colossians 1:13-14). Secondly, in Christ we receive new hearts and minds, which are perfectly calibrated to God’s known standards, enabling us to morally evaluate our world properly (Romans 7:25; Ephesians 4:17-23; Colossians 2:16; Hebrews 10:14-16). Redeemed, instructed, and equipped with renewed hearts and minds (Romans 12:2), may we successfully fulfill all of our God-given tasks today.

God bless you all dear saints,

Pastor John

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