This is word of admonition to those who call themselves to be believers.
The image of modern-day Christianity has been perverted by people who where pride as a necklace and their arrogance masquerades itself as confidence. Many of these people mean well, but they have been seduced by their passion against some obvious sins (namely abortion and homosexuality)…
1 Timothy 5:24-25 (NLT)
24 Remember, the sins of some people are obvious, leading them to certain judgment. But there are others whose sins will not be revealed until later. 25 In the same way, the good deeds of some people are obvious. And the good deeds done in secret will someday come to light.
…to excuse, justify and even indulge in the sins that aren’t as obvious or politicized such as pride, arrogance. They don’t share their faith in love. They are accused of hating those whose lifestyles they reject, while they themselves accuse others of hating the proud and arrogant personalities they support.
God used proud and arrogant nations ( namely Assyria and Babylon) to punish His people because of their idolatry, hypocrisy, assimilation, refusal of justice, violence and their arrogant leaders.
However, after using these clearly ungodly nations and ungodly rulers to punish His people, He later harshly punished Assyria and Babylon. Go back and read Isaiah, Jeremiah and Ezekiel through this context.
The problem with many people in America who call themselves Christians is that they never see America as Assyria or Babylon…only as either persecuted or victorious Israel.
God has made a promise to those who have succumbed to pride and arrogance…
Jeremiah 50:31-32 (NASB)
31 “Behold, I am against you, [a]arrogant one,”
Declares the Lord [b]God of armies,
“For your day has come,
The time [c]when I will punish you.
32 The [d]arrogant one will stumble and fall
With no one to raise him up;
And I will set fire to his cities,
And it will devour all his surroundings.”
Jeremiah 50:31-32 (NKJV)
31 “Behold, I am against you,
O most haughty one!” says the Lord God of hosts;
“For your day has come,
[a]The time that I will punish you.
32 The most proud shall stumble and fall,
And no one will raise him up;
I will kindle a fire in his cities,
And it will devour all around him.”
You can’t fight against one sin by accepting and engaging in another.
Remember, pride is the first mentioned among the seven deadly sins because it is the parent sin to countless offspring sins.
Proverbs 6:16-19 (NKJV)
16 These six things the Lord hates,
Yes, seven are an abomination to [a]Him:
17 A[b] proud look,
A lying tongue,
Hands that shed innocent blood,
18 A heart that devises wicked plans,
Feet that are swift in running to evil,
19 A false witness who speaks lies,
And one who sows discord among brethren.
Proverbs 16:18 (NKJV)
18 Pride goes before destruction,
And a haughty spirit before [a]a fall.
James 4:6 (NKJV)
6 But He gives more grace. Therefore He says: “God resists the proud,
But gives grace to the humble.”
Many of those who call themselves evangelicals do not represent the true image of Christ any more than the Scribes and Pharisees them. The fact is that Yeshua the Messiah, Jesus Christ warned to beware of their hypocrisy and teaching…
Luke 12:1 (NKJV)
In the meantime, when an innumerable multitude of people had gathered together, so that they trampled one another, He began to say to His disciples first of all, “Beware of the [a]leaven of the Pharisees, which is hypocrisy.
Remember that the LORD’S scathing rebukes WERE NOT FOR THE ‘SINNERS’ but those who called themselves to be religious leaders!
Think about Jesus’ response when the woman was caught in adultery. Think about how He dined with ‘sinners’. Then think about His responses to those who called themselves to be ‘religious’…
Matthew 23:13-36 (NKJV)
13 “But woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you shut up the kingdom of heaven against men; for you neither go in yourselves, nor do you allow those who are entering to go in. 14 [a]Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you devour widows’ houses, and for a pretense make long prayers. Therefore you will receive greater condemnation.
15 “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you travel land and sea to win one proselyte, and when he is won, you make him twice as much a son of [b]hell as yourselves.
16 “Woe to you, blind guides, who say, ‘Whoever swears by the temple, it is nothing; but whoever swears by the gold of the temple, he is obliged to perform it.’ 17 Fools and blind! For which is greater, the gold or the temple that [c]sanctifies the gold? 18 And, ‘Whoever swears by the altar, it is nothing; but whoever swears by the gift that is on it, he is obliged to perform it.’ 19 Fools and blind! For which is greater, the gift or the altar that sanctifies the gift? 20 Therefore he who [d]swears by the altar, swears by it and by all things on it. 21 He who swears by the temple, swears by it and by Him who [e]dwells in it. 22 And he who swears by heaven, swears by the throne of God and by Him who sits on it.
23 “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you pay tithe of mint and anise and cummin, and have neglected the weightier matters of the law: justice and mercy and faith. These you ought to have done, without leaving the others undone. 24 Blind guides, who strain out a gnat and swallow a camel!
25 “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you cleanse the outside of the cup and dish, but inside they are full of extortion and [f]self-indulgence. 26 Blind Pharisee, first cleanse the inside of the cup and dish, that the outside of them may be clean also.
27 “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like whitewashed tombs which indeed appear beautiful outwardly, but inside are full of dead men’s bones and all uncleanness. 28 Even so you also outwardly appear righteous to men, but inside you are full of hypocrisy and lawlessness.
29 “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! Because you build the tombs of the prophets and [g]adorn the monuments of the righteous, 30 and say, ‘If we had lived in the days of our fathers, we would not have been partakers with them in the blood of the prophets.’
31 “Therefore you are witnesses against yourselves that you are sons of those who murdered the prophets. 32 Fill up, then, the measure of your fathers’ guilt. 33 Serpents, brood[h] of vipers! How can you escape the condemnation of hell? 34 Therefore, indeed, I send you prophets, wise men, and scribes: some of them you will kill and crucify, and some of them you will scourge in your synagogues and persecute from city to city, 35 that on you may come all the righteous blood shed on the earth, from the blood of righteous Abel to the blood of Zechariah, son of Berechiah, whom you murdered between the temple and the altar. 36 Assuredly, I say to you, all these things will come upon this generation.