Wednesday, April 05, 2017

Self-Righteous Divisions

Deus caritas est! “…God is love.” 1 John 4:16
As we enter this season of reflection and renewal, let’s rediscover God calling to His children, revealing His goodness, and transforming each one with Perfect Love. "This is real love – not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to take away our sins" (1 John 4:10) ~ Donna Oswalt

The greatest enemy to human souls is the self-righteous spirit which makes men look to themselves for salvation. Charles Spurgeon

The Pharisees were an influential religious authority in Judaism. They reinforced the Jewish law. Knowledgeable and well-versed in the Scriptures, the Pharisees quoted the law and prided themselves on living the law. In some ways, we who attend church and Bible studies, teach Sunday School, serve on church committees, and sing in the choir can act the same as the Pharisees. We, too, can be self-righteous in our actions to those we think are less religious than we are.

Some of the Pharisees said, "This man Jesus is not from God, for he is working on the Sabbath." Others said, "But how could an ordinary sinner to such miraculous signs?" So there was deep division of opinion among them. John 9:16 NLT

Churches and religious organizations and Christians struggle with the same issues as the Pharisees. In our desire to represent God to the world, we can create deep division between  ordinary sinners and religious sinners. There is none. Our pride gets in the way and often can be a wedge instead of a lever; we hinder instead of encourage. In our disagreements, we plod along in our certainty, without love or compassion or gentleness. How like the Pharisees we can be!

READ John 9:13-16

consider this!

- What was the Sabbath? To was 'law' are the Pharisees referring?

- Name an example of a deep division in a religious group today.

- How do you know Jesus is from God? Find a Scripture to support your answer.

Lord, forgive me when I find more delight in knowing about You than in "knowing" You. Give me eyes to see my neighbors as You see me - a sinner in need of grace. Amen. -dho

All rights reserved; copyright 2017 by Donna Oswalt/Co-Founder of Mangrove Ministries/Christian blogger and author;  Breathing Room For My Soul (blog)~ Follow on Twitter @soulchat

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