ON PUTTING PEOPLE DOWN
The devil can make a lot of progress against us by encouraging us to speak badly of other people. Active Christians can be extra vulnerable to the temptation of self-righteousness. Like the Pharisees, we can start thinking so highly of ourselves that we begin looking down on others.
When we fall into that trap, it usually comes out in our speech. We criticize other people – not constructively, to their faces, but destructively, behind their backs. We spread news of their failings and sins. We pass on rumors that we don’t know are true (this is gossip); and sometimes we even tell lies about them (this is slander). Whenever we do those things, it’s because we want to appear superior in the eyes of the people we are speaking to. We think (wrongly) that lowering their opinion of someone else will elevate their opinion of us.
Yet, how can that be pleasing to God? No matter how active you are in the community, if you cared more about glorifying yourself than God, then you would just be a clanging bell. Instead of cutting people down, build them up. Jesus knows all the dirt on us, and yet, he tells no one. ONZ, OAR