I know the grammar police will want to catch me on this one, so just to be clear, I spelled it wrong on purpose. I’m talking about altar like in church. I’m talking about guarding our hearts and I’m talking about humility. I’ve been working through the parables for our Bible study at church and as you may know they are a passion of mine. One thing I see over and over again is the Pharisees and their prideful attitude. These are the leaders of the church of their day and yet their arrogance really puts them at odds with Jesus. They are so arrogant that they assume He can’t be the Messiah because He is doing exactly what the Scriptures they were supposed to know and share with the people, said He would do. They had huge egos because of their high religious position and in the process, faced God’s judgment. We can’t afford to make that mistake.
Of course there is another side to this, one I see manifesting a lot in our day. This usually seems to manifest in leaders who are trying to make the Word of God fit the culture. As a result, they usually seem to reason away what God actually said, in favor of some PC norm, that they arrogantly assume has to be what He actually meant. It’s almost as if they think the , omnipresent, omnipotent, omniscient God, who is the same yesterday, today and forever, couldn’t envision our sin nature running amok in this age. These people set themselves up as if they are more enlightened and they come off sounding like they think they’re smarter than God. They, of course would stringently deny this and yet, if you assert that the Bible doesn’t mean what it actually says and infer that the common man is simply to dense to understand what God is really trying to say, what other conclusion can I come to? This is the other end of altar egos. Here’s what we all need to remember, the Bible is solid and unchanging. That makes it dependable. Culture on the other hand is just the opposite. Cultural whims change on a dime and since those whims are the whims of men, they are not dependable. The thing is the Word of God is not supposed to change with the culture. The Word of God wielded by humble servants who love God and love people will actually change culture.
Friends, as we seek to use these gifts we’ve been given to take the Gospel to the end of the earth, we need to keep our egos in check. We have a high calling, but it is to be wielded with humanity, The wisdom of God, like God Himself is sovereign. We don’t need to add to it and we dare not change it. We simply need to find ways to convey it—to take the unchanging Gospel, a Gospel that is rock-solid all by itself, to an ever changing world. To do this right, we need to check our egos at the door and take up our crosses.