THE CHARACTER OF A BELIEVER: A STUDY ON THE PHARISEES III.

Last week, we discussed how the pharisees were proud people. Superiority complex is a phenomenon whereby a person sees himself as better than others. People with Superiority complex are often times proud and proud people often times have superiority complex. You guessed right, the pharisees had a superiority complex.

Formerly, the Jews generally saw themselves as better than unbelieves (pagans) but the Pharisees saw themselves even more highly than that. They prided in their knowledge of the laws so, they saw even those who were believing Jews but not as grounded in Scriptures as they were, as inferior to them. They refused to associate with people they considered “lowly”. (Matthew 9:11)   

You’re not better than anyone.

As Christians, we must come to the understanding that we’re not better than anyone, we are only more privileged. In fact, Philippians 2:3 tells us to consider others as better than ourselves. Sometimes, I see Christians put down another person or mock the person’s situation because they are unbelievers but that is not right. We must understand that our privilege of being born again into the kingdom of our Lord Jesus Christ where we are raised with the values of Christ, is not to make us feel better than or superior to anyone but for us to draw more people into the kingdom of God. (Matthew 9:11-13)

Do you remember the parable of the Pharisee and the tax collector? Where both men went to pray and, in all humility, the tax collector cried his heart out to the Lord for mercy but the Pharisee kept bringing up comparisons of himself with the tax collector and how he is better than the tax collector. Jesus said the tax collector would definitely be walking home justified (Luke 18:9-14 AMP). You don’t come before God with a mentality that you’re better than your next-door neighbor or the unbeliever in your class. You did not save yourself! Jesus did and He did so by looking down on you with mercy not with contempt. Some of us even look down on fellow believers even in the church!

What would Jesus do?

A child of God should not have a superiority complex as it is not in the nature of our Lord Jesus Christ, hence it is not in our nature. Imagine what would have become of us if Jesus had decided to ostracize us because He is better than us (and He truly is)? We have received the gospel and the salvation that comes with it, because someone with the privilege of salvation was humble enough to share it with us. You cannot win souls for Christ with the mentality that you are better than the unbelievers you are going to preach to. Jesus won the hearts of the sick and poor because He chose not to see Himself as better than them. In humility and with love, he walked with them, talked with them and sometimes broke bread with them and they became His true disciples.  

Jesus instructs believers to love God first and then reciprocate this love to one another (Matthew 22:37-39). These are the attributes of love:

“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs” (1 Corinthians 13:4-5).

Take note that love does not dishonor others. The moment you start to build a superiority complex (which leads you to dishonoring others), you know that love is far from you. Don’t be like the pharisees who had a superiority complex which fueled their pride. Be like Jesus Christ who so humbly calls us his brothers and sisters and friends (Mark 3:35). Aspire to use your privilege to bring others into the family of Christ.  

Published by teniiiola

A Pharmacy student who loves to talk about God.

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