Faithlife Sermons


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Andras Tamas is the name officials gave a certain man decades ago in a Russian psychiatric hospital. He'd been drafted into the army, but the authorities had mistaken his native Hungarian language for the gibberish of a lunatic and had him committed.

Then they forgot about him. For 53 years.

A few years ago a psychiatrist at the hospital began to realize what had happened and helped Tamas recover the memories of who he was and where he came from. He recently returned home to Budapest as a war hero, "the last prisoner of World War II."

Not only had this man forgotten his real name, he hadn't even seen his own face in five decades. So, according to one news account, "For hours, the old man studies the face in a mirror. The deep-set eyes. The gray stubble on the chin. The furrows of the brow. It is his face, but it is a startling revelation."

Imagine looking at your own face in a mirror and not recognizing it. James 1:23-24 says that is just what people are doing when they listen to God's Word but do not obey it. It says:

For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man observing his natural face in a mirror; 24 for he observes himself, goes away, and immediately forgets what kind of man he was.

Like Andras, there, right before their eyes in Scripture, is an accurate reflection of themselves. But they don't truly see—with the eyes of their hearts—what the Bible shows them. They don’t internalize scripture because they refuse to see themselves in it.

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