There is more hope for fools than for people who think they are wise. Proverbs 26.12 NLT
The Lord seeks to engage the prideful and self-sufficient in a search for truth by which they might be saved from their folly. To those wise in their own eyes, God says: “Come now, and let us reason together” (Isa. 1:18). “Come now” is a call for the proud to come out of their self-righteousness, lay aside all pretense, and admit that they are a sinner in need of a Savior. God wants the proud to humbly cry out: “God be merciful to me a sinner!” (Lk. 18:13).
A person touched by the grace of God acknowledges their sin and seeks forgiveness because God opened their eyes and convinced them of the need for mercy and forgiveness. The proud Pharisee thought that he was righteous because he did not commit the same sins that other people did. He did not want to admit or even see his sins; his self-righteousness made him blind!
When we pray, “God be merciful to me a sinner!” we acknowledge our total depravity and our need for salvation through Christ. We also recognize our complete dependence on God’s grace to be saved from our sinfulness. The proud do not say this prayer because they do not believe they are depraved or cannot save themselves. They think they can save themselves by their efforts, so why ask God? The proud refuse to admit their need; they live under the illusion that they can overcome their sinfulness without God’s help! They refuse to recognize their depravity and therefore reject God’s mercy; they must remain in their self-righteousness and blindness (see Mt. 23:13–33).
Where are you today? Are you walking in a spirit of humility or a spirit of pride? Let me encourage you today by saying it’s not only ok to say you need help, but it’s necessary to say it. If you’re struggling today check out this article that reminds you that you are not alone.
Click here if you need prayer.