Self-justification is believing that nothing needs to change; you are just fine as you are. Self-deception is denial that you have sinful idols.
Below is a chart that asks deeper questions about the self-deception of believing false promises juxtaposed with accepting the certainty of Christ’s work done on your behalf.
What does it mean for the cross to grow in your life? We must repent of our false beliefs and trust in Christ’s finished work on our behalf.
|False Belief About Self that Makes False Promises||Alienation and Impact of False Beliefs||God’s Answer that Leads to Life in Him|
|Performance||I am tempted to believe I am what I do. I am controlled by the avoidance of anxiety and guilt.||Justification—We are made right with God through Christ and he accepts us and brings peace.|
|Provision||I define what I need and the strategies to acquire it. I focus on provision in attempting to avoid being controlled by fear.||Sanctification—We are free from the bondage of sin as we live in light of God’s love.|
|Popularity||I am tempted to believe I need the acceptance of others. I am controlled by pride that seeks to avoid shame.||The Indwelling Spirit reminds us that we are not alone, producing humility and reminding us that we have been adopted into God’s family.|
|Power||If I can control my circumstances, others, and myself, I can avoid despair and disappointment.||Authority in spiritual conflict comes from God’s promise that reminds us of the hope we have in a Savior who is making all things, including us, new.|