Exalting Self

Do you think too highly of yourself?

Do you look at others and make a statement like “I am a better Christian than they are?” Throughout Scripture, we are told to be humble and not to exalt ourselves. One of those times is found in Luke 18:10-14:

"Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. 11 The Pharisee stood up and prayed about himself: 'God, I thank you that I am not like other men--robbers, evildoers, adulterers--or even like this tax collector. 12 I fast twice a week and give a tenth of all I get.' 13 "But the tax collector stood at a distance. He would not even look up to heaven, but beat his breast and said, 'God, have mercy on me, a sinner.' 14 "I tell you that this man, rather than the other, went home justified before God. For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted." NIV

Are we like the Pharisee and say things like, “I pray more than they do” “I know the bible better than them” “or my gifts are better than theirs.” In God’s eyes, He does not play favorites. He doesn’t look at us and say, “He is better than she is” or "I like her better than him." So, if God doesn’t exalt us, do we have the right to say we are better Christians than others? Paul, who was one of the greatest people in the New Testament, said this about himself:

1 Timothy 1:15 "Here is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance: Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners--of whom I am the worst."

Notice this mighty man who preached the gospel to thousands and healed many people considered himself the worst sinner. We need to look at our self as Paul looked at himself. It is important that we don’t think too highly of ourselves and think we are better than others. When we get to this point we are not too far from a big spiritual fall.

Proverbs 16:18 Pride goes before destruction, a haughty spirit before a fall. The Message Bible puts it this way:

Proverbs 16:18 First pride, then the crash— the bigger the ego, the harder the fall.