In my lastpost I talked about the importance for Christians to guard our faith against the spiritual attacks that will come against us. Let’s consider pride as it is often self-generated. I believe it was C. S. Lewis who said pride was the most dangerous of all sins. As Christians we are to live under the authority of God’s Word. However, pride in ourselves can set us up as judges as if we are standing over God’s Word. This pride can cross the whole spectrum of Christian theological beliefs.
Among some professing Christians there is a tendency to deny entire sections of the Bible. Some will throw out the entire Old Testament and the writings of Paul the Apostle. Some reject the idea of a Six-Day Creation, the Great Flood of Noah’s day, or the story of Jonah. Yet Jesus clearly believed these teachings from the Old Testament and many others. In fact he said, it was easier for heaven andearth to pass away than for one iota of the Law and the Prophets to pass away. He came not to do away with the Law and the Prophets, but to fulfill them. (Matthew 5:17-19). In our pride we should not be sitting injudgment as to which parts of the Bible we will believe and which we will not believe.
Among some professing Christians there is a tendency to add to the Scripture. This is an equally big problem. Often these people will add a host of regulations that they expect other Christians to adhere to. Sometimes they will interpret certain portions of Scripture to say they are not valid for today, or they will forbid things the Scriptures clearly allow. Again, in pride they are acting as judges over the Scriptures in that they are saying the Scripture is not complete and they must add to it or change it somehow.
From the Articles of Religion of the denomination I serve, it says the Scriptures contain everything necessary for our salvation, nothing extra is to be required (Article V). They also state that the Old Testament is not contrary to the New and that its moral laws are still binding upon all Christians (Article VI). These rules have been in place in Methodist Churches since 1808. Other denominations may have similar statements. Their purpose is to prevent us from becoming so proud in our own thinking that we sit in judgment over the Scripture. Rather we should seek to understand it and apply it to our lives; we are not to reject any of it, nor are we to add to it, nor are we to reverse its meaning.
Pride seeks to justify ourselves in our own eyes, but one day we will give an account to God for our lives. See Romans 14:12. So let us seek sincerely to live under the authority of God’s Word, enjoying its promises and obeying its commands. God’s Word will never fail us.