BEWARE OF SELF-RIGHTEOUSNESS

“You who judge others do these very same things.” Romans 2:1

I read the following illustration, on having the proper perspective.  A woman looked out her window every morning and commented to her husband on the dirty laundry on her neighbor’s line. One day she noticed it was sparkling clean: “Maybe she’s using a new detergents”; she remarked. “No” said her husband. “I got up early and cleaned our windows.”

Hello! When Paul talks about “greed, hate, envy, murder, quarreling, deception…gossip” (Romans 1:29), it’s tempting to think it doesn’t apply to you. Then he says, “You are just as bad…you…do these very same things.”

Maybe you’ve never embezzled money, but have you ever shortchanged somebody? Or taken an “iffy” tax deduction? How about when you’re stuck in traffic, or you overhear some juicy gossip?

The Christian writer Phil Yancey says: “Murder and adultery differ from hatred and lust only by degree…Paul reserves his most scathing comments for self-righteous people…A Pharisee of Pharisees, he knew the pattern…the danger that accompanies a feeling of moral superiority. Just as denial keeps you from seeing a doctor about a lump or lesion…denial of sin leads to worse consequences…! accepted a speaking engagement from some Christians involved in Twelve­ Step Programs…As I pondered what to say…it occurred to me that what
recovering alcoholics confess daily-personal failure and the need for grace…represent high hurdles for those of us who take pride in independence and self-sufficiency. Romans 3:10 says, There is none righteous,’ and God’s grace is the only solution. It comes free of charge, apart from the law and…human efforts towards self-improvement…we need only hold out open, needy hands-the most difficult gesture for a self-righteous person.”

About scon777

Pastor/Teacher at Grace Bible Church in Redwood City, CA since 1998.
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