Thursday, May 14, 2009

Speaking with Pride

Job 33:2
Now I open my mouth; My tongue speaks in my mouth.
My words come from my upright heart; My lips utter pure

Elihu begins speaking to Job, and in his pride refuses to believe that he is wrong. Like the New Testament Pharisees, Elihu believes himself to be righteous before God. He also believes it to be his duty to point out to Job that Job is in the wrong and needs to correct his standing before God. Elihu, so full of pride, declares "Truly I am as your spokesman before God;"

I honestly cannot imagine anyone having the audacity to declare themselves as God's spokesman and then speaking their own thoughts and opinions as if they were Gods. However, I am not so naive to realize this happens on a daily basis. Pastor's who misinterpret God love and judgment who preach that God is only a God of love do this very thing, as do those who preach that the Bible teaches tolerance of the very sins that God declares to be an abomination.

Even though I may not declare myself to be "God's spokesman" when talking with others, it is very easy for myself to allow pride to set in and think that because I am a pastor's wife, went to Bible college, and grew up in a pastor's home that I have a better understanding of the Scriptures than other people. The truth is that while I may be a bit more familiar, that does not equal more knowledge or a better relationship with God. That simply means God holds me that much more accountable for my actions. When dealing with other believers, I must not be condescending, but be willing to learn from them.

I have a friend who I would have to say I disagree with much of what she believes. I firmly believe that she has been taught some great misinterpretations. Yet, I do not doubt her relationship with God. In fact, despite our disagreements, I believe she has a very strong relationship with the Father. In such situations, I must be careful with my words because it would be very easy to speak out of pride rather than a heart of love and longing for her to understand the Scriptures truthfully. She has been taught by false teachers, 2Pe 2:1 "But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction." Through her own personal Bible study, and through our "godly" conversations, I can pray that she will learn to rightly interpret the Scriptures.

A man's pride shall bring him low: but honour shall
uphold the humble in spirit. Proverbs 29:23

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