Oh, how easy it is to look down upon those who have made mistakes, and overlook our own! I read this morning from the book 'Desire of Ages', and came across this quote. It was sobering, to be sure:
“The Pharisees built the tombs of the prophets, and adorned their sepulchers, and said one to another, If we had lived in the days of our fathers, we would not have united with them in shedding the blood of God's servants.
At the same time they were planning to take the life of His Son.
This should be a lesson to us. It should open our eyes to the power of Satan to deceive the mind that turns from the light of truth.
Many follow in the track of the Pharisees. They revere those who have died for their faith. They wonder at the blindness of the Jews in rejecting Christ. Had we lived in His day, they declare, we would gladly have received His teaching; we would never have been partakers in the guilt of those who rejected the Saviour.
But when obedience to God requires self-denial and humiliation, these very persons stifle their convictions, and refuse obedience. Thus they manifest the same spirit as did the Pharisees whom Christ condemned.”
--The Desire Of Ages, pg. 618.
When I have an opportunity to deny self, when God calls me to be humble... how do I react? I may look good in the eyes of others, but would Christ, with tears in His eyes, have to rebuke me as He did the Pharisees?
I'd rather be a tax collector than that!
But even more, I want to truly be like Jesus. Never thinking myself immune from those failures had by my predecessors, I long to submit to Him.