‘For we dare not make ourselves of the number, or compare ourselves with some that commend themselves: but they measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise.’ — 2 Corinthians 10:12
The theme of 2 Corinthians in chapter ten turns directly toward the issue of ‘some’ (v.2) who tried to undermine Paul’s authority and gospel. Paul’s goal in all of this was to bring the Corinthians back into obedience to Christ (v.5).
One of the mistakes these false teachers made was to compare themselves among themselves and measure themselves by themselves. It is very difficult not to get involved in comparison, especially when our focus is not on Christ. We learn this from an early age, whether it be in the area of academics, physical stature or sport.
Yet, we are foolish to engage in personal comparisons. The standard is not other people but the ‘knowledge of God’ and the Lord Jesus Christ (v.5). Any other measurement is based on outward appearances (v.7).
Our commendation and approval is not something we gain from ourselves or from comparison with others (v.18). Our approval and commendation come from the Lord (v.18).
So, let us keep our eyes on the Lord. Let us not engage in the foolishness of comparison. Let us continue to look to Christ, to glory in the Lord, and to seek to bring everything into obedience to the truth about God and Christ.