What is it to be selfish? We all have a general understanding of what the word “selfish” means. Some would say that it means to be full of one's self. Others would say that it means to be self absorbed. Some would even venture out to say that it means to be one's own idol. Nevertheless, you can choose any of the definitions above, and you wouldn't be wrong. To be selfish is to be totally and unequivocally against GOD. To be selfish is to be in total opposition of GOD and against what HE stands for. But let's face it: It's hard not to be selfish, especially since you've been living with yourself all of your life. You've been through the highs and the lows of life, and you've learned to appreciate the man or woman whose reflection you see staring back at you everyday. You have been there for you when no one else was. After all, you didn't have a choice in the matter. You have learned to favor yourself over others, and this is totally against GOD'S plan for you and HIS design of you. You were created to bring glory to HIM and to praise HIM. When you are selfish; however, you will always bring glory to yourself, and you will only praise HIM with your lips, even though your heart will be far from HIM.
A selfish person has erected themselves up as an idol in their own hearts. Sure, you may not see them worshiping themselves and calling themselves glorious names, but their lifestyles and thoughts will oftentimes center around themselves. All idols aren't worshiped with kneeling and the burning of incense. Idol worship is not always a person paying homage to their idols during a certain hour of the day. A selfish man is his own idol, and he usually honors himself in whatever position he is in; whether he be standing up, lying down, squatting or kneeling. At the same time, selfish individuals will worship themselves all hours of the day and night because they are so absorbed with themselves that they have become blinded by themselves.
But what are the dangers of being self-conceited, self-absorbed and self-reliant?
- The first danger is you put yourself at total enmity with GOD. Please be reminded that selfishness is the very sin that drove Satan to envy GOD. This brings us to number two.
- Selfishness invokes the spirits of jealousy and envy. A selfish person sees everything as a competition. In their perfect world, they are God and everyone else is just there to serve them.
- Selfish people often have ought against GOD in their own hearts. After all, HE wants them to worship HIM, and they are too busy worshiping themselves. Many people who are selfish can easily praise the LORD externally while being at total enmity with HIM internally. To them, worship is a ritual, but if a trial were to come their way, they would easily attempt to curse GOD or speak reproachfully of HIM.
- Selfish people usually begin to develop unhealthy thinking patterns because they are too absorbed with themselves to see the truth. They often become insecure, paranoid and extremely emotional. After all, people keep getting in their way. Selfishness causes a person to believe that others around them see them just as much as they see themselves. Selfish people frequently accused others of being jealous, and many accuse others of making plans against them. That's because it's hard for them to imagine that no one else is as wrapped up in them as they are in themselves.
- A selfish person sees others as tools to better their lives. How is this dangerous? GOD has a plan for every person in the earth, and what HE puts in me is stored up to bless you and others. A selfish person will attempt to abort GOD'S plan in the lives of the people they are trying to use. This means they not only erect themselves as competitors against GOD, but they also become active opposition against GOD. They run into a war that's already won, only to find out that their team was already conquered thousands of years ago. A selfish person will not want you to do GOD'S will when it conflicts with their own.
- A selfish person will often become a burden to themselves. They will often drown themselves in self-pity, become extremely emotional and many are driven to murder or suicide when their needs or desires aren't being met.
The more selfish a person becomes, the more their mind is compromised. The mind can't handle too much of “me” and people who are overly selfish oftentimes begin to border mental illness. Some even make it across the line. The world has its general definition of what mental illness is, and they've got machines, scientists and books to back their findings; nevertheless, they couldn't be further from the truth.....literally. After all, the WORD is the Truth and the Truth is the WORD. Mental illness is a wrong way of thinking, only there are levels to it. Understand that to be mentally unstable or mentally ill doesn't necessarily mean that the person is hearing voices or seeing things that aren't there. One can hold a perfectly normal conversation with you, hold down a good job, raise a family and still be mentally unwrapped. One could live with doubt, fear, wrongful thinking and a heart full of lies, and still lead what looks to be a normal life; nevertheless, they do not have peace from within. That's what makes them so dangerous. They appear to be like you and me, but an in instant, they can snap. After a while, they will buckle under their own pressure because they never gave their burdens to the LORD like HE told them to. Sometimes, we are a burden to ourselves, and that's why we need to give ourselves to CHRIST.
Man developed an imperfect doctrine trying to find an alternative to the Bible and its teachings. Man developed theories based on the research and conclusion of other men, and chose facts over truth. Man then made his findings and the findings of other men law. We were told to honor this law, and if we were to ever challenge it, we had to challenge it with carnal theories, not Biblical truths. We were told what intelligence was and how intelligence was supposed to look. We were taught that intelligence was superior to wisdom, when in truth, to be intelligent only means to be filled with the doctrines of men. To be wise is to be filled with the WORD of GOD. Man's doctrines change; his facts are disproved and his imperfections are put on public display everyday. But the WORD of GOD never changes, has never changed and will never change! The enemy set his trap, and once again, he told man that he could be like GOD, knowing all things. He offered man facts, and caused him to forfeit his right to everlasting life for a thick pair of glasses, an applause and a briefcase. We were taught to worship the intelligence of man, rather than the truth of GOD. That is: Man exchanged the lie for the truth! “Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen” (Romans 1:25).
But what does any of this have to do with being selfish? It's simple: Anytime a person is self-absorbed, he opens himself up to devils and they will give him new doctrines to live by. After all, we are creatures who want to lead just as much as we want something or someone to follow. That is the history of mankind. A self-seeking individual will oftentimes look for a platform for themselves in other religions, religious beliefs and even in cults. That's because selfishness drives us to want to enlarge ourselves. “Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils; Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron; Forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from meats, which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth. For every creature of God is good, and nothing to be refused, if it be received with thanksgiving: For it is sanctified by the word of God and prayer” (1 Timothy 4:1-5). Let's rightly divide this scripture.
- In the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils; Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron- This is what we see an over-abundance of today. There are many false doctrines that have went forth in the earth, and they continue to increase as man becomes more and more self-absorbed. Go into any religious institution that speaks against the truth, and what you will find is a lot of individuals wrapped in the finest apparel and wearing some of the thickest eyeglasses in the realm of the earth. Every man seeks to look more intelligent than the last man as he tries to find his place amongst the notable. After all, he idolizes himself and wants to prove why he believes others should idolize him too. At the same time, we are living in a time where the conscience of man is slowly passing away. Violent crimes are becoming more frequent, and man has to continue to develop laws, strategies and profiling tools to help contain the beast they've set loose.
- Forbidding to marry- Right now, shacking up is the new normal, and marriage is oftentimes discouraged. At the same time, many religions and cults forbid their members from intermarrying with others outside their sects.
- And commanding to abstain from meats, which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth- You will find this behavior mostly in religious denominations that try to find ways to set themselves apart from other denominations. Everyone wants to be the truth, but there aren't many who want to understand that JESUS is the Truth, and HE won't be replaced.
A selfish person wants to be seen. A selfish person wants to be heard. A selfish person will separate himself from the LORD to seek his own glory and he will attempt to justify doing so. In this day, selfishness is encouraged and selfless acts have become so few and far between that when one does occur, it is often televised, and the person is revered as a good Samaritan. Nowadays, you will see many people auditioning for the role of GOD. Many people are seeking their own glory. Many are trying to find a way to stand out so they can show off their intelligence; and if they are not intelligent, many want to show off their wit, their fighting skills, their knowledge of the Bible or their talents. Some people even show off their bodies. Showing off one's body is mostly done amongst women who want to show why they believe they should be on the next ascending platform.
To be selfish is to build a tower of Babel in your own heart. It is when you are seeking the glory of GOD without the presence of GOD. In doing so, you may find yourself drenched with confusion and unable to understand yourself. When you can't understand you, confusion sets in and insanity starts to set you apart from others. After all, that's what you wanted: to stand out. There are many people in mental institutions now who once had sound minds, but selfishness drove them to look inside of themselves to find out what was there. What they found was darkness, devils and insanity. Many “intelligent” doctors would tell you that mental illness is an imbalance in the mind; when in truth, mental illness is spiritually rooted. It is an imbalance in that person's life, whereas they ventured off into a realm that they weren't prepared to access. They saw what they could not explain, having no WORD in them. They heard what they could not see, having no light in their eyes. They felt what they could not touch, having no faith in them. That's why when a spirit is cast out of a man, that person absolutely has to be introduced to a new way of thinking; otherwise, that spirit will return to them with seven spirits more wicked than itself.
GOD is a GOD of unity. Everything HE gives you to do is not for you; it is for HIS glory. HE wants you to bless HIS people, even if you encourage them by telling them what HE did in your life. JEHOVAH is the only true and living GOD, and we are not to have any other gods before HIM. Anytime a person becomes his or her own god, that person is in total submission to devils, and if they see the very devils they are serving, they'll run straight to the “intelligent” doctors or scientists for answers. With them, they'll only find a diagnosis (a lie) and a treatment (a lie to soothe the lie they were told), but no cure (WORD of GOD). After all, you can't fight a devil with a drug. “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places” (Ephesians 6:12).
Always be careful that you don't get so wrapped up in yourself that you can't find your way back out. Mental health professionals are standing by, but they can't help you find your way back to sanity; they can only give you medicine to keep you calm as you continue down the roads of insanity. JESUS is the cure, and unity is the answer. Insanity is wrongful thinking, whether it has been diagnosed or gone undiagnosed.