What am I justifying in my life that God may detest?
14 The Pharisees, who loved money, heard all this and were sneering at Jesus. 15 He said to them, “You are the ones who justify yourselves in the eyes of men, but God knows your hearts. What is highly valued among men is detestable in God’s sight.”
Jesus had just shared the parable of the shrewd manager and instructed his listeners to be wise enough to be generous with their money, so that they would be welcomed and rewarded in heaven. They wanted nothing to do with that.
I can’t fully explain how disgusting it is for me to think back and see all the ways I justified my love for money, as a “Christian”. I was so good at justifying it that if someone would have pointed it out to me, I would have remained in denial about it. But, from heaven’s perspective, money was definitely my first god because I believed that everything would work out just fine when I finally had enough money. I justified the aggressive pursuit of money by telling myself that once I had a lot, it would give me credibility to publicly talk about God. What shameful and ignorant thinking that was! That was me essentially saying that God’s value, in the eyes of other people, rises or falls with my income level. That possibly puts me in the same category of people as Simon the Sorcerer, who thought he could buy the power of the Holy Spirit with money (Acts 8:9-25).
After a season of major financial crisis, I had been waiting in faith for God to bring restoration. One day, I was sitting on the porch inquiring of God, when all of a sudden I heard these words. “I am primarily in the heart restoration business, not the checkbook restoration business.” WOW! My thinking had been so different than God’s. Oh, how I thank Him for his mercy towards my ignorance. Ask God to show you anything you are justifying in your life, that He finds detestable. When He shows you, act in faith on it.