If you’re superstitious, living a morally upright life, and, yes, know a little Bible, you might very well thank your lucky stars that “I am not like other men–robbers, evildoers, adulterers” (Luke 18:11). If, though, you don’t believe in the stars, or anything beyond your five senses, you will probably thank yourself for not being “like other men…”
Thank yourself? The Bible teaches that it is only by God’s grace that we desire to sin no more. If we believe that, we would thank God for keeping us from sinning. Pride in our own worth is arguably the most iniquitous of sins. The Lord Jesus Christ teaches that being lower than you want to be is good for you:
“Then He came to Capernaum. And when He was in the house He asked them, “What was it you disputed among yourselves on the road?” 34 But they kept silent, for on the road they had disputed among themselves who would be the greatest. 35 And He sat down, called the twelve, and said to them, “If anyone desires to be first, he shall be last of all and servant of all” (Mark 9:33).
In Chaper 10 of Mark, we read:
Then James and John, the sons of Zebedee, came to Him, saying, “Teacher, we want You to do for us whatever we ask.” And He said to them, “What do you want Me to do for you?” They said to Him, “Grant us that we may sit, one on Your right hand and the other on Your left, in Your glory.”
But Jesus said to them, “You do not know what you ask. Are you able to drink the cup that I drink, and be baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with?” They said to Him, “We are able.”
So Jesus said to them, “You will indeed drink the cup that I drink, and with the baptism I am baptized with you will be baptized; but to sit on My right hand and on My left is not Mine to give, but it is for those for whom it is prepared.” And when the ten heard it, they began to be greatly displeased with James and John. But Jesus called them to Himself and said to them, “You know that those who are considered rulers over the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great ones exercise authority over them. Yet it shall not be so among you; but whoever desires to become great among you shall be your servant. And whoever of you desires to be first shall be slave of all. For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many” (Mark 10:35-45).
“I’m no angel” say people making excuses for their sin. If they were Christians who had not lost their savour, they would never say such a thing, knowing well that when angels sinned they were thrust into eternal torment where the “worm does not die, and the fire is not quenched” (Mark 9:48), and without any possibility of redemption. For Christians, in contrast, “God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”
Now, you know a little more Bible.