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Respectable Sins: 4 Manifestations of Selfishness | Part 4

In my last post in this series, I discussed how we are often selfish with our money. If you would like to read that post, you can do so by clicking here. Today I will deal with our selfishness regarding our consideration of others.

Our Consideration of Others

Those who are inconsiderate are really being selfish because the only consideration they have is for themselves. We see this in Philippians 1:15-17:

“Some indeed preach Christ from envy and rivalry, but others from good will. The latter do it out of love, knowing that I am put here for the defense of the gospel. The former proclaim Christ out of selfish ambition, not sincerely but thinking to afflict me in my imprisonment.”

What are some areas in which we can be inconsiderate?

Being inconsiderate manifests itself in a number of ways, here are just a few:

  • Always being late - When we make others wait, we are being inconsiderate of their time.
  • Talking too loudly on our cell phones - When we talk too loud on our phones in public, so that it disturbs those around us, we are being inconsiderate.
  • Being rude or indifferent to our waitress - When we are rude or indifferent to others, we show that we do not care about their feelings. We only care about our own feelings. It takes almost no effort at all to say, “Thank you.” [1]

The Greatest Example of Unselfishness 

The Lord Jesus Christ Himself is the greatest example of unselfishness. In Philippians 2:5-11, we are told that He did not hold onto His position as God for His own selfish gain. Rather, He gave up certain privileges when He came to earth as a man. He then gave up His life, dying on the cross for the sin’s of mankind, so that we might have eternal life.

How do we Mortify Selfishness?

In order to kill selfishness, we need to reflect on the gospel. We must realize that we would not have a restored relationship with God or eternal life, if Jesus had not thought others more important than Himself and humbled Himself on the cross. Thinking on Jesus’ actions should spur us on to be selfless. So then, we should pray that the Holy Spirit would show us how we are selfish and give us the power to rid that sin from our lives. We should also preach the gospel to ourselves, reminding ourselves of Christ’s selflessness.

Questions for Reflection

  1. Does your daily interactions tell you that you are inconsiderate of others?
  2. What does Christ’s sacrifice tell us about how we should act?
  3. What form does selfishness take in your life?

Resources

[1] Jerry Bridges, Respectable Sins, 105-106.

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