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News and views from the German-language region of Europe

July 12, 2019

"Self-praise stinks"

Filed under Sabbath Thoughts

"Eigenlob stinkt" — that's what a German proverb says. It may not only stink, it also does not promote harmony within our Christian fellowship.

The trend in our world today is to seek fame, greatness, glory and honor. Many are creating an atmosphere for people to honor those who become great according to this world’s standards, but seldom do they give God the glory and honor (Malachi 2:1-2).

As Christians we live in our various worldly societies and we are exposed to its influence. At times this influences some in the church today. Is it possible to seek preeminence in the church out of the desire to gain prestige? According to the Bible, this is possible (3 John 1:9). Jesus tells us that it is even possible to do a good deed out of wrong motivation by seeking the praise and recognition of men (Matthew 6:1-4).

If we are seeking praise and glory for ourselves – and thereby putting ourselves into a competition with our brethren – how can we "in lowliness of mind . . . esteem others better than" ourselves (Philippians 2:3)? If this had been Jesus’ attitude, would He have been willing to come to the earth and die for us?

The apostle Paul tells us: "Whatever you do, do all to the glory of God" (1 Corinthians 10:31).

The proverbs exhort us: "Let another man praise you, and not your own mouth; a stranger, and not your own lips" (Proverbs 27:2).

We must let God our Father and Jesus Christ honor us. And that they will do! We are all spiritual family members and will soon to be honored, and glorified by God as His firstborn sons and daughters. This is what we look forward to instead of seeking the praise of men in this life.

Jesus set the perfect example for us. He said: "I honor My Father . . . I seek not My own glory . . . If I honor myself, my honor is nothing: It is my Father who honors Me" (John 8:54).

How well are we following the example Jesus gave us?

With these thoughts I wish everyone a rewarding Sabbath!

Paul Kieffer's blog with personal insights and news from the German-language region in Europe.


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