Corinthians(2) 5:16, The Matrix

Second Corinthians 5 has always been a favorite chapter, especially verse 16 (NIV), "So from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view. Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer."  My wife and I often remind and correct each other when we are regarding someone from a "worldly" point of view.  By "worldly" Paul means from mankind's natural viewpoint apart from enlightenment from the Lord and a heart of grace. 

I am often tempted to place people into the categories of "the good" to be loved and trusted and "the bad" to be avoided.  Furthermore once these categories are established I overlook the good in the bad people and the bad in the good people.  These categories, however, are totally opposed to the view point of Christ who loves and died for sinners.

A better way is a Christian regard for our fellowman that absolutely does not result in trust in or worship of each other, but instead a commitment to brotherhood.  That is we must follow Christ and love and forgive even those who do not deserve it, for we ourselves do not deserve the love and forgiveness we have received from God.  The Scriptures teach that any one of us is capable of any sin, therefore we are all in great need of friends that will bring the love of Christ into our lives rather than abandon us to our wretchedness or blindly pretend that we all are the nice people that we show ourselves to be from day to day.  Moreover, a Christian regard for Christ must result in sinful man's trust in, obedience to, and worship of a perfect Christ.  Consider a matrix of worldly and Christian views below:

 Four views of Christ  as bad as good
 worldly The Pharisees thought
Christ could not be trusted
for he associated with sinners
Luke 15:2
The crowds thought
Christ was wonderful and
so crowned him earthly king
John 6:15
 Christian Christians know
Christ has done nothing wrong
even though he was crucified
Luke 23:41
Christians must
trust, obey, and worship
Christ as king of our hearts
John 20:28


Four views of man as bad as good
worldly A Pharisee
hated bad men
because they are bad
Luke 18:11
Even Tax-collectors
love good men
because they are good
Matthew 5:46
Christian Christians should
love bad men because
Christ graciously loved us
Matthew 5:43-46
Christians know
even the best man
is still corrupted by sin
Romans 3:23

You will note there is a great contrast between the worldly and Christian views and the views of Christ and man in the tables above.  Are your views of your fellowman and Christ Christian or worldly?  Are you regarding others from a worldly point of view or from the view of Christ?  Only with God's help can we be agents of grace in a world devastated by the corruption of sin.