Deference, Part 1 (The Man in the Mirror, Episode 91)

I’m Daniel Whyte III and you’re listening to The Man in the Mirror, Episode 91

This podcast is directed to all young people, but primarily to young black men, young black women, and their parents. We are thankful for all the people who are standing up for justice and racial equality. But this podcast is about the man in the mirror. What are you doing for the glory of God, to make life better for others, for your family, and for yourself? This podcast is about living life in such a way that it cuts back on the chance of being harassed or killed by the authorities or anyone else and helps you to live the good life of peace and joy.

Psalm 119:9 says, “Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? by taking heed thereto according to thy word.”

Jim Rohn said, “You must take personal responsibility. You cannot change the circumstances, the seasons, or the wind, but you can change yourself.”

Martin Luther King Jr. said, “Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others?’”

In keeping with our theme of dealing with the man (or woman) in the mirror, we are going to continue discussing the building of important biblical character traits in your life. Today, we are looking at the quality of Deference, Part 1 from the Institute in Basic Life Principles.

Deference vs. Offensiveness
Deference is putting the welfare of others ahead of our own personal pleasures.

When Paul instructed believers to prefer one another in honor, he defined the essence of deference. In Romans 12:10, the Greek word rendered preferring is proegeomai, meaning “to lead the way for others.” It is a strong word that denotes commanding with official authority, to be chief and having rule. Thus, as we defer to others, we experience the paradox spoken of by Jesus: “Whosoever of you will be the chiefest, shall be servant of all” (Mark 10:44).

Deference is making personal sacrifices in order to help others be successful and putting off words, attitudes, or actions that would cause others to be offended or weakened. We should defer whenever it will benefit the cause of Christ. Deference and discretion work together. “The discretion of a man deferreth his anger; and it is his glory to pass over a transgression” (Proverbs 19:11).

Examples of Deference
Scripture contains significant examples of those who demonstrated deference, and their testimonies provide precedents for parallel situations. Therefore, we are encouraged to meditate upon these testimonies so that we can accurately apply the precedents in new circumstances.

Deference to Government
When a tax collector asked Peter if Jesus paid taxes, Peter said, “Yes.” However, Jesus asked Peter, “Of whom do the kings of the earth take custom or tribute? of their own children, or of strangers?” (Matthew 17:25).

Peter answered, “Of strangers. Jesus saith unto him, Then are the children free” (Matthew 17:26). Having established the fact that He had the right and freedom to not pay taxes, Jesus said, “Lest we should offend them … find a piece of money: that take, and give unto them for me and thee” (Matthew 17:27).

Deference to Children
Jesus gives a strong warning about offending children. “Whoso shall offend one of these little ones which believe in me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea” (Matthew 18:6).

The conscience of a child is very sensitive. Vulgar words and actions to which adults may have grown callous can be very hurtful and offensive to children.

Now, in closing, in order to be saved — in order to get right with God — you cannot look at the man in the mirror, but the Man Christ Jesus. First Timothy 2:5 says, “For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.”

If you do not know the Lord Jesus Christ as your Savior, here is how.

John 3:16 states, “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that -whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can have a home in Heaven. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will. Romans 10:13 says, “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

God bless you.

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