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It’s All About Me!

Luke 18:10-12 (Jesus speaking), “Two men went up to the temple to pray; the one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. The Pharisee stood and prayed about himself, ‘God I thank Thee, that I am not as other men are, robbers, evildoers, adulterers, or even as this tax collector. I fast twice a week, I give a tenth of all that I get.’” This Pharisee was a man who many would consider a devout man of God. He was very serious about his service to the Lord. Some Christians are sincere about their spiritual commitment until it touches their pocketbooks or interferes with their plans and selfish desires. But not this Pharisee: he fasted and financially sacrificed well beyond what was expected of him. Without a doubt, he was highly respected in his society. Outwardly, this Pharisee refused to involve his life in the sins so unfortunately common in the world. He was in many ways spiritually superior to those around him. Regrettably, however, this man’s heart was far from God because his life was a self-centered life that inwardly proclaimed, “It’s all about me!” He prayed with a posture of pride and condescension, praying not to God but praying to himself. In a sick sort of way, he is grateful to God that he is so very special, unlike all those sinners in the world he despises so deeply, especially the tax collector praying nearby. Five times in two verses he uses the first person singular pronoun “I,” making himself the major subject of his prayer. Furthermore, this Pharisee had fallen into the fatal error of supposing that he had placed God in his debt, that God owed him salvation on the basis of good deeds that he did and on the basis of his outward observance of the commandments in the mosaic law. His prayer showed that he had a big eye on himself, a bad eye on the tax collector, and no eye at all on God. Next time: A spiritual look at the tax collector and the eternal truth declared by this parable, all considered in the conclusion to “It’s All About Me!” Like us at Facebook: firstchristianchurchdonnatexas. Chris Voss is a pastor at First Christian Church, 317 S. Main, Donna. ...

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