I’ve always thought I wasn’t a bad person. Certainly there are those that are worse than me.
I may have lied but I’ve never killed anyone.
I may have lusted but I’ve never raped or committed adultery.
I don’t seek to go and hurt anyone intentionally.
However that’s all according to my standard and I will always look good to myself when I measure me against my standard.
God has a different standard. His standard is His word.
But I base my standard on His word, which is why I mention things like lying, murder, and adultery.
God’s word is a powerful comparison tool to use against yourself.
It is written,
For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. Heb 4:12
God doesn’t just see your actions – He sees the intent of your heart and hears the words of your thoughts.
His standard is so high that lust is adultery; that hate is murder. (c. f. Matt 5:21-30)
I believe Jesus expounded only on those two because they are so basic to everyone.
Who hasn’t been angry?
Or who hasn’t lusted?
It is not enough to allow God to be in control of your actions but He must also control your very mind and thoughts.
Thus, it is written,
do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God. Rom 12:2
Once your mind is renewed then your actions will truly follow.