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We can get into a trap of seeing ourselves very differently from how God sees us. Such is the case when we think our own good deeds and works for God (our righteousness the Bible calls it) are good enough in themselves for God to be impressed or that our plans and ideas are more important than the things God has for us. Often, out of right motives, we let ourselves become the focal point of our faith. Not good. For instance, in this song, the person wants to prove to God how much he loves God, so he works really hard at things; things that arenıt bad, but are actually pretty good and Biblical. However, he does them only to look good or prove himself to God, not to build Godıs kingdom. Not good. The second problem is that he is not being obedient to God, but working for himself and his own satisfaction. The Bible clearly says that to God ³obedience is better than sacrifice² (1 Samuel 15:22).

God gives him a cross to carry (see the Bible study for Splinter) but he wants
one that looks better, so he can look more spiriual! He cuts down his own tree and makes a cross, nails himself to it, sticks his head in a thornbush (like Jesusı crown of thorns), compares himself to his brother in Christ and brags that the nails in his cross are longer. Not good. Do you see how the entire focus of his actions as a believer are on himself? This is an exaggerated literalized picture of what we do as we try to serve God in our own way, not His. It is also exactly what Jesus combatted in the religious people of his time (read Mark chapter 7). They concentrated on making themselves look good and religious on the outside, but denied the inner heart issues that would make them more like God. Not good. Thinking they served God best by their own righteousness, they ended up deceived and cruel. They, and many of us today, essentially wear a robe (of righteousness) that we believe is beautiful and pleasing to God, full of sacrifice He didnıt require or desire.

Eventually God shows up on the scene and shows the real standing of this robe
we wear, best described in Isaiah 64:6: ³...all our righteous acts are like filthy rags.² This is the filthy robe we all wear without the work of Jesus on His cross. As we try to meet Gods requirements of righteousness on our own, we will fail (Romans 3:10,23), but through faith in Christ we have complete righteousness before God (Romans 3:22). In Jesus is where we find total acceptance from God and through actions that He commands do we find ourselves walking in true righteousness. Good.

Skillet Do:
Read Philipians 3:7-11 and compare each point of Paulıs view of his life to the way you see yourself. Ask God to change your perspective in these things so you might walk in obedience and righteousness.