(August 31, 2013)
There seems to be a trap that just about everyone falls into from time to time – it is the trap of self-righteousness. It is a horrible knife-edge that you are compelled to walk. On the one hand, you struggle to excise vices out of your life. But then, the moment you manage to have success in the war against yourself you find yourself pulled into the trap of pride and self-righteousness.
Clearly the priests of Noah believed themselves to be righteous, but in a sense they were almost caricatures of self-righteousness. They should clearly have known that they were not living the Law of Moses – I do not believe that they were deluded in their opinions of themselves, but were rather in open rebellion against God. But what about us? How do we improve our spirituality while avoiding the trap of pride?
I think the key is to recognize where the progress comes from. If we feel we have eliminated our bad habits through effort we may believe we are righteous. If we recognize the truth – that the Lord blessed our meager efforts and through His grace our vices were healed, there is no pride to be had. We are left only with the glory of God and a reminder of how loving He treats us.