by Ed Rowell

This content is part of a series.

Public Performance Is Easier than Private Devotion (3 of 7)
(Undesirable Characteristic: Self-Righteous)
Series: Adventures in Missing the Point
Ed Rowell
Luke 18:9-14; Matthew 6:1-18

If you are just joining us, this is the third week in a six-week series entitled, Adventures in Missing the Point, where we have been learning about the Pharisees, those first-century antagonists. The first week we learned that the Pharisees were not the caricatures that we may have grown up believing in. They were sincere men who were
• Orthodox in their theology and zealous in their commitment to Scripture.
• Righteous in their lifestyles.
• Dedicated to living untainted by the evil of the world.
In other words, they were a lot like us. But, in their pursuit of religious activity, they often missed the point.

Adventure #1 Knowing the Bible is easier than living the Bible.
Adventure #2 Public Performance is easier than Private Devotion.

They did some wrong things with the right motive--they created an elaborate system of rules in an honest effort to help them keep God's commandments. And as we'll see today, they frequently did the right things with the wrong motive.

Have you ever noticed how much pleasure there is in passing judgments on others? I'm not just talking about criticizing people, but presuming to know their motive, their heart and their character. Can we just be honest and admit we enjoy it more than seems reasonable?

For instance, I am usually extremely confident that every other driver on the Interstate is less skilled than I am, and when their reckless actions involve me, those actions were deliberate and intended to both irritate and endanger me.

When my wife or kids are having a bad day, I pass judgment that they are deliberately trying to get on my last nerve.

If someone in a store gives me poor service, I instantly take offense and judge them as being stupid and lazy. If I go to the bank and have to stand in line be ...

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