BRAGGING If there is one thing we humans like to do is brag. Some of us brag about our achievements or wealth, or we brag about our children and their accomplishments. We even claim bragging rights when our favorite sports team wins a national championship, like we in some way helped them. True to our human nature, we start bragging young; “My dad can beat up your dad!”, “I can run faster than you can!” etc., etc. It is no wonder that the Bible says in James 3:5 that the tongue is a little member that boasteth great things. I’ve even heard some people justify themselves by saying that it’s not bragging if it’s true. I think we can all agree though that someone who toots his own horn constantly becomes an annoyance. Ecclesiastes 3:7 says, “There is a time for silence, and a time to speak.” Is there a time when one’s bragging is acceptable? Given that we are going to be held accountable before God for every idle word that we speak (Matt 12:36) is bragging allowable at all? Generally believers understand clearly that being a braggart is the opposite of being humble, one of the preferred character traits of Christians. We are told specifically in Scripture not to boast over some things, our salvation being one of them. It is a gift of God, not of works, lest any man should boast. (Eph 2:8-9) We may boast over our receiving the gift of salvation, but there is no boasting over our own ability to earn it. We didn’t and we can’t, which leads us into what we can brag about. David had no problems knowing what to brag about in Psalm 34; “My soul shall make her boast in the Lord, O magnify the Lord with me, and let us exalt his name together.” (v. 2-3) There has never been a restriction on making the name and the ways of the Lord known, particularly when He has positively affected our lives. But really, the best advice pertaining to our bragging is found in Jeremiah 9:23-24, “Thus saith the Lord, Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, neither let the mighty man glory in his might, let not the rich man glory in his riches: but let him that glorieth glory in this, that he understandeth and knoweth me, that I am the Lord which exercise lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness, in the earth: for in these things I delight, saith the Lord.” When we stand before God in the final judgment He will not ask us how many championships we’ve won, or how new our cars were, or if our children all became rich and successful. What He will ask is, “Do you know me?” Imagine his pleasure when you brag to Him that you do.

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