Call it an interlude if you must, but this survey by the Barna Group is worth a glance if it causes me to reflect on who others see in me; Jesus or Pharisee?
By the time I had made it through the article I was pretty disgusted with my own attitudes and actions. As much as I didn’t want to admit it, it appears there’s a lot more Pharisee living in this heart than Kingdom living allows for. Here’s a sampling, and the entire article with some neat charts can be found here.
Actions like Jesus:
- I listen to others to learn their story before telling them about my faith.
- In recent years, I have influenced multiple people to consider following Christ.
- I regularly choose to have meals with people with very different faith or morals from me.
- I try to discover the needs of non-Christians rather than waiting for them to come to me.
- I am personally spending time with non-believers to help them follow Jesus.
- I find it hard to be friends with people who seem to constantly do the wrong things.
- It’s not my responsibility to help people who won’t help themselves.
- I feel grateful to be a Christian when I see other people’s failures and flaws.
- I believe we should stand against those who are opposed to Christian values.
- People who follow God’s rules are better than those who do not.
Picking apart the second bulleted statement from the self-righteous attitudes list, isn’t it the Christian’s responsibility to always be helping people who won’t help themselves? Isn’t this the message at the heart of the gospel?
While I was faithfully serving my sin master, God sent His Son to help me, because I had no intention of helping myself (Romans 5:8).
So if you found the time to visit Barna and read their article, what did you think? Can you find a biblical basis for each of their bulleted lists? If so, who do you see in the mirror; Jesus or Pharisee?
- Are Christians More Like Jesus or More Like the Pharisees? (ourcommunityatfbcdc.wordpress.com)
- Barna Report: Most Christians Are More Like the Pharisees; Only 1 in 7 Have Lifestyles that Line-Up with What They Say They Believe (blackchristiannews.com)
- 15 Reasons Why You Might be a Pharisee (mtsweat.com)
- Does Anybody Know that I am a Christian? (livingontilt.wordpress.com)