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Removing Self from Self-Righteousness

Unmasking the Invisible Sin

Luke 6:39-42

Self-righteousness is one of the most difficult sins to recognize within ourselves, because it disguises itself as obedience to Scripture and firm convictions about the truth. That’s why Christians are particularly prone to its deceptive lure; after all, we know right from wrong and have a genuine desire to obey the Lord. This “invisible sin” is overcome only through exposure and repentance.

The Pharisees were glaring examples of self-righteousness. By examining their lives, we can glean an understanding of the inner workings of this manifestation of pride that still entraps many believers today. Let’s strip off our blinders and allow God’s Word to reveal any false righteousness in us (Heb. 4:12-13).


  • The self-righteous are blind guides who lead people astray. They are quick to point out the sins of others but can’t see their own (Luke 6:39-42).
  • Their focus is on good behavior, not on a pure heart. They appear outwardly righteous but are inwardly full of hypocrisy (Matt. 23:25-28).



  • Ask the Lord to search your heart and reveal any hidden self-righteousness (Ps. 139:23-24).
  • Confess your arrogance (1 Cor. 8:1-3).
  • In repentance, humble yourself (James 4:6-12).
  • Pursue an intimate relationship with Christ, not your own righteousness (Phil. 3:3-16).
  • Extend grace, not judgment, to others (Rom. 14:1-13).

Questions for Reflection

  1. Does your familiarity with Scripture or success in obeying God lead you to compare yourself with others who are less knowledgeable or who struggle with certain sins? If so, why do you think you do this?
  2. Are you more prone to ind fault with others or to extend mercy and grace? What does Christ mean when He says that you will be judged by the same measure that you use for others (Luke 6:38)?
  3. Are you reluctant to ask the Lord to examine your heart? What do you fear He may find? What are the benefits of bringing hidden areas into the light?
(Copyright 2010 In Touch Ministries, Inc. All rights reserved. www.intouch.org. In Touch grants permission to print for personal use only.)