Warning Against Becoming Financial Pharisees

Is the inside of your cup clean?

In Matthew 23 Jesus said, “Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You give a tenth of your spices—mint, dill, and cumin. But you’ve neglected the important matters of the law—justice, mercy, and faithfulness. You should have practiced the latter, without neglecting the former. You hypocrites! You clean the outside of the cup and dish, but inside they are full of greed and self-indulgence. Blind Pharisee! First, clean the inside of the cup and dish, and then the outside also will be clean.”

Well, I see 2 lessons for all of us. First, let’s examine our hearts to be sure we’re not becoming financial Pharisees.  Jesus didn’t say to stop giving. He told them to practice giving along with justice, mercy, and faithfulness. Are we doing all the right things with money but harboring wrong attitudes towards others? Are we self-righteous and pious, judgmental, and mean? Second, how do we mask our greed and selfishness? Jesus said that the first priority is to “clean the inside of the cup” which refers to our hearts. Are we authentic – truly generous? Or are we doing just enough to impress a few folks? Jesus knows, sees, and cares about the condition of our hearts more than our financial good deeds. Generosity won’t excuse a lack of justice, mercy, and faithfulness. So let’s clean the inside of our cups!

And if you’re struggling to hide the condition of your credit card debt I recommend that you contact Christian Credit Counselors. They’ll create a debt management plan just for you. For more information call the Crown Helpline: 800-722-1976 or visit online at crown.org/ccc.