Pretentious Spirituality

August 20, 2021

Scripture Resource Passage: Galatians 5:1-26 

Pretentious spirituality can deceptively lead disciples for a walk in the low-land of foolishness. Carefully investigating the life of Jesus while employing the wisdom of the Spirit, sometimes corrects this low-land hike, taking us to a better and higher country.

Spirituality can descend to special days, special seasons, special clothes, special hats, special haircuts, special houses, special foods, special events, special travels, special places, special cuttings—who is able to keep track of all the specials? A specialist is required—a person who delights in tracking and correcting all who miss a special.

Photo by Kei Scampa on

Leaving this low-country life Jesus guides disciples to the Matterhorn of spiritual action, not a humanly contrived dirt pile. Jesus leads disciples to spiritual heights (Matthew 5,6 & 7).

Our brother Paul expressed the thought with these words: “The only thing that counts is faith expressing itself through love” (Galatians 5:6b). Writing during a time of profound controversy over some “low-country-specials,” he scattered the little dirt piles echoing Jesus’ call to God’s people. 

At another time, when writing to groups of disciples he instructs: “Therefore do not let anyone judge you by what you eat or drink, or with regard to a religious festival, a New Moon celebration or a Sabbath day” (Colossians 2:16).

Expressing faith through love can be a simple act of giving a cup of cold water to a thirsty person (Matthew 10:42). Faith through love can be working in the tasks for which you are gifted (Romans 12). Disciples who wish to live in the high-country where Jesus is Lord are those who take the instructions and bring them into their lives with determination. We join Jesus in the heights which God provides. May the Spirit lead us.

Life Applications

Have you discovered specific paths to the high-country?

Which spiritual practices contribute to your discernment?

Published by Andrew Simkins

Dr. Andrew Simkins provides spiritual direction for individuals and small groups through the regular blog posts found on this site. He resides in northwest Indiana with his beloved, along with nearby children and grandchildren who are the adornment of his life.

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