How to Know If You’re Self-Righteous
Excerpt—"From Eternity to Here"
Excerpt from From Eternity to Here:
“You’ll never know if self-righteousness is in your heart until something tragic happens to a fellow Christian that you know.
When somebody you know (or know of) falls short, makes a mistake, or is the subject of an ugly rumor, it is at that moment that a self-righteous spirit—if it exists—will rear its head.
To be self-righteous and judgmental is to disqualify yourself from the kingdom of God. It is to deny the fact that you are a sinner who is hanging by a cobweb of grace, just like the rest of us.
If you get in touch with your humanity, you will make an important discovery: You are just as fallen as everyone else and just as undeserving of God’s mercy as everyone else. Such a revelation should remove any judgmental bone in your body.”
– Frank Viola
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Every day in October I’m sharing a short quote on grace from a favorite book.
- You’re not a pendulum, Christian
- Body, I forgive you
I don’t know if I’d say self-righteousness disqualifies us from the kingdom of God – it’s not like we lose our salvation if we get judgmental, and none of us is qualified anyway. But this is something that God hates, and something we need to continually watch for because it can creep up on us unawares. I do agree very much with the last two sentences of the quote and feel that is the quickest antidote to any vestiges of self-righteousness.
Yeah, I debated about even using this quote because I agree with you that “disqualifies” is probably not the right word here. I’m glad we don’t lose our salvation over that or else we’d all be out. 🙂 I’m assuming that’s not fully what he meant by it, but nonetheless, it could use some clarifying.
I’ve been thinking about this one a lot, and it seems to me that self-righteousness, if persisted in, is a path to eventual apostasy, setting ourselves up as little-g gods.
The broader question of whether salvation can be ‘lost’ will be debated until He returns, but I suspect it might be something like the people who did the miracles in Jesus’ name, and He told them to amscray…that He never knew them.
A parrot can say the Sinner’s Prayer (and, never having fallen, can be assured of Heaven), but if we say it and don’t live it…do we really have salvation?
Certainly we’ll all be sinners while we’re here, but I think the key may be in eternal vigilance, at least trying to stop the sin before it comes up and hating its presence in our lives, not reveling in it while thinking of the “Christians Aren’t Perfect – Just Forgiven” bumpersticker.