Mat 23:5 But all their works they do for to be seen of men: they make broad their phylacteries, and enlarge the borders of their garments, Mat 23:6 And love the uppermost rooms at feasts, and the chief seats in the synagogues.
In my previous article I dealt with Jesus’s condemnation of the outward religion of these Jewish leaders as they concentrated on the little things and missed the most important aspects of worshipping God. I applied it to our tendency to think ourselves okay because the outward man looks good while the inward man is not doing well at all. I quoted the above passage from Matthew 23 because these verses deal primarily with their pride. It is our pride that I would like to write a few thoughts about today.
I was listening to Albert Mohler today as he made an interesting observation about what is referred to as Gay Pride Parades. He rightly noticed how it is not unusual for sinners to be proud of their sin. We are seeing little by little that fewer and fewer sins are to be ashamed of but instead they are demanded to be embraced as good.
But as I said in the previous article, it is trying to see how we Christians might be guilty of the same thing that is most important in applying this passage of scripture and as I thought of Homosexuals parading around proud of their sin I wondered if we do the same thing many times.
Pride after all is the essence of all sin as we seek to put ourselves above God and others. At our church we have been going through the Peacemakers DVD series which has been a first rate, biblical look at how we are to resolve offenses and differences with each other. And as you begin to look at the root reasons for bad relationships it is the sin of pride that mostly stands in our way. We are too proud to confess our guilt before God and certainly before each other.
And this is where I think we are guilty many times of the same type of sin as those who march through the streets proud of their sin. Even though we are faithful to church and prayer and devotions and tithing and all the rest of those easy to do outward signs of religion, we very stubbornly refuse to humble ourselves with each other and be honest of our guilt and confess our sins to each other. Perhaps we ought to have a Stubborn Pride Parade. After all we seem quite content to live with strained, awkward and certainly ungodly relationships with each other and if anyone would dare confront us with our problems we blow up or clam up (husbands) or separate ourselves and have an even worse relationship with them rather than listen to those who love us and want us to do right.
Hey, at least we aren’t guilty of homosexuality, right? Well, no, but aren’t we equally guilty of being so proud of our sinfulness that we refuse to listen to anyone and even dare anyone to point out our sin? Every time we get angry at someone without cause and refuse to do right we might as well print a banner that we are proud of ourselves and march around the church. At least then we will not be guilty of hypocrisy! Instead we tend to go around and point out all the sins we aren’t guilty of rather than the ones of which we are guilty.
There is no end to the Sin Pride Parades we could participate in if we think about it. And it isn’t because we aren’t guilty at times of all these things but it is because we are so willing to stay in a state of such sins and refuse to forsake them and seemingly dare anyone to approach us about them. That is what makes me think we are proud of our sins. When I see a Christian willing to stay angry and distant to another sister or brother in Christ for years or a husband or wife willing to live in a cold, distant, unloving, non-intimate, abusive relationship with their spouse right into the grave, it leaves me shaking my head.
Clearly honoring the Lord has been abandoned, not to mention loving your neighbor as yourself. We might as well have an “I’m Proud And Not Going To Change Parade” and admit what everyone else already knows. Because like those marching in the Gay Pride Parade, all we are doing is daring anyone to suggest that we are not doing what we should be doing.