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The Biblical Pros and Cons of Entitlement.

Introduction:

Entitlement, a sense of deserving certain privileges or special treatment, is a concept that can be explored through a Biblical lens. It's important to discern its presence and implications in our lives, reflecting on its positive and negative aspects. Let's delve into what Scripture says about entitlement, using illustrations, comments, and my perspective to provide a comprehensive understanding.


**Pros of Entitlement:**


1. **Recognition of Identity in Christ:**

- **Scripture:** "But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God's special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light." (1 Peter 2:9)

- **Illustration:** Consider a child who understands their parents love them. This recognition fosters confidence and security. Similarly, recognizing our identity in Christ can instill a healthy spiritual entitlement, knowing we are God's chosen people.

- **Comment:** This form of entitlement isn't about demanding special treatment but about understanding our worth and purpose in God's plan.

- **Opinion:** Embracing our identity in Christ can lead to a fulfilling life. We can confidently approach God, knowing we are His children, which fosters spiritual growth and resilience.


2. **Expectation of God's Promises:**

- **Scripture:** "For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." (Jeremiah 29:11)

- **Illustration:** Imagine a farmer sowing seeds with the expectation of a bountiful harvest. Expecting God's promises can drive us to live faithfully and purposefully.

- **Comment:** Believing in God's promises encourages us to trust His plan and live in hope.

- **Opinion:** This expectation should lead us to live righteously, knowing that God's promises are specific. It encourages perseverance and a positive outlook on life, even amid trials.


**Cons of Entitlement:**


1. **Pride and Self-Righteousness:**

- **Scripture:** "Pride goes before destruction, a haughty spirit before a fall." (Proverbs 16:18)

- **Illustration:** The Pharisee in Luke 18:10-14 who boasted about his righteousness while looking down on others exemplifies the dangers of prideful entitlement.

- **Comment:** Entitlement can breed a sense of superiority and self-righteousness, leading us away from humility and dependence on God.

- **Opinion:** When entitlement turns into pride, it can corrupt our character and relationships. Maintaining humility and recognizing that all we have is by God's grace is crucial.


2. **Lack of Gratitude and Contentment:**

- **Scripture:** "Do everything without grumbling or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure, 'children of God without fault in a warped and crooked generation.'" (Philippians 2:14-15)

- **Illustration:** The Israelites in the desert often grumbled against God despite the miracles He performed, showcasing a destructive sense of entitlement (Exodus 16-17).

- **Comment:** A sense of entitlement can make us ungrateful and discontented, closing our eyes to God's blessings and provision.

- **Opinion:** Cultivating gratitude and contentment helps us appreciate what we have and prevents us from developing a destructive sense of entitlement.


**Conclusion:**

Entitlement can be both a blessing and a curse. When rooted in our identity in Christ and His promises, it can lead to a fulfilling and purpose-driven life. However, when it stems from pride and self-righteousness, it can lead to our downfall. Balancing our understanding of entitlement with humility, gratitude, and a heart of service is vital to aligning with Biblical principles and living a life that honors God.

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