True holiness does not seek an audience.

As professing followers of Christ, we are often tempted to use our faith to make ourselves look good. This behavior comes in many forms: actively accusing others of heresy and sin in order to appear wise and pious, boasting incessantly about our prayer life and how many books we read, and even publicizing acts of charity in order to be known by others as charitable.

Now, there is nothing wrong with discernment, devotion, and charity, but if the intent of any of these is anything other than true love of God, His truth, and a desire to be like Him, then it is self-worship.

The person who abuses the Word of God as a means of gaining prestige is no better than the man who distorts it to lead others astray. Both false teachers and falsely pious men alike know nothing of the love of God, as both use Him merely for their own personal benefit; false teachers to fill their pockets, and the falsely pious to fill their hearts with pride.

Often, this behavior of self-glorification is accompanied with shallow prayer and little to no time invested in the Scriptures. The reason for this is that we are not seeking after God, but ourselves. We have no love for God because we only love ourselves. We have no desire for His wisdom because we think ourselves to be wise already. We do not wish to grow in holiness because we believe we are holy as is. Meanwhile, we are drowning in a mire of sins that we don’t even know about because we have been blinded by self-love!

The truth is, growth in holiness is a gift from God only to those who truly seek Him. Godly wisdom comes to the humble, who know that they are foolish, but approach the Word of God with childlike wonder and excitement. Do you find yourself boasting about your faith? Then examine yourself and see if you are truly seeking after Him! Do you want to be seen? Then repent, and let Christ be seen instead! (Prov 26:12; Isa 5:21; Mat 6:5-6)

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