Do What Is Honorable

Author: Rob Schenck

MUSIC VIDEO: My Lighthouse

The Rev. Dr. Rob Schenck is an ordained evangelical minister and president of the Dietrich Bonhoeffer Institute, located in Washington, DC. He holds a Doctor of Ministry from Faith Evangelical Seminary in Tacoma, Washington and is a senior fellow of The Centre for the Study of Law and Public Policy at Oxford. Rev. Schenck is the author of the book, "Costly Grace".


For we aim at what is honorable not only in the Lord’s sight but also in the sight of man.

2 Corinthians 8:21

We don’t hear the term honor as much today in our society as in yesteryears. When we do hear the term, sometimes it is attached to very dishonorable actions and behaviors. The definition of doing what is honorable according to Merriam-Webster  is “having or showing honesty and good moral character” and “being fair and proper; not deserving blame or criticism.” Seems to me we could really use a return to that standard.

To fulfill that need in society, quite frankly, should start with you and me – believers in Jesus Christ. In the above Scripture, the apostle Paul tells us our aim as Christians is to do what is honorable before the Lord – as well as in the eyes of fellow human beings. This is similar to the edict Christ gave to us to love God with all our heart, soul, and mind as well as to love our neighbor as ourselves. That means that everything we do and say should be honorable – reflecting Christ’s attitudes and behaviors – so that those around us get a good glimpse of the God we love and worship.

Think about that for a moment. Are you like me – thinking of those words, reactions, or behaviors that were far from honorable? It’s humbling isn’t it? Notice the apostle Paul said we “aim” to be honorable. No doubt we are going to make mistakes and we will fall short; it’s a consequence of the fall.  Nevertheless, we need to keep aiming for the goal to be honorable in every aspect of our lives. When we pursue what is honorable, it makes us take a second look at how we react to situations and people; how we view our culture and the people around us; and how we understand that even if something is permissible, it may not be honorable.

1 Corinthians 6:12 says, “All things are lawful for me, but not all things are helpful. All things are lawful for me, but I will not be dominated by anything.”

“I’m pressing on the upward way,
New heights I’m gaining every day;
Still praying as I’m onward bound,
“Lord, plant my feet on higher ground.”

—Rev. Johnson Oatman, Jr., 1892, “Higher Ground”


May we pause and reflect on our thoughts, attitudes, opinions, words, and behaviors and ask: Is this honorable before God and others?