Jesus criticizes religious leaders and their followers for using and receiving verbal titles. Written titles may be helpful to communicate education or legal status in our society but verbal titles primarily elevate people and encourage the sin of "PRIDE" (Mk 7:22 KJ). Jesus said, "YOU ARE NOT TO BE CALLED 'RABBI' … AND DO NOT CALL ANYONE ON EARTH 'FATHER'" (Mt 23:7-10 NI) etc. Some Christians may criticize other Christian religions for calling their religious leaders "Father" but then hypocritically use titles calling their religious leaders "Brother" or "Prophet" or Apostle" or "Pastor" or "DOCTOR" or "REVEREND' (Mt 23:7 MSG) etc, which are all self-elevating verbal religious titles. Self-promoting titles are offensive to God who told (Jn 12:49) Jesus to say, "IF ANY WANT TO BECOME MY FOLLOWERS, LET THEM DENY THEMSELVES" (Lk 9:23 NRS). Some religious leaders are so full of pride they ignore what Jesus teaches and use titles when introducing themselves, thereby encouraging others to use their self-promoting titles. Yes, Jesus usually was polite to people, who used titles of respect like Master which is often translated Lord when addressing Him, although one time when a man used a term that Jesus knew clearly belonged to God, "GOOD TEACHER …" Jesus responded, "ONLY GOD IS TRULY GOOD!" (Mk 10:17-18 TL). Christians who "REJECT" Jesus and "DO NOT ACCEPT" His teachings will discover as Jesus says, "THE WORDS I HAVE SPOKEN WILL BE THEIR JUDGE" (Jn 12:48 GN). Avoid using titles for others and introducing yourself with a title thereby encouraging others to disobey Jesus and call you by a title.

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A Psalmist wrote: "The wicked do not care about the LORD; in their pride they think that God doesn't matter" Ps 10:4 GN


Protect your relationship by anticipating problems. It is unrealistic to not expect some problems. Onetime I had a man that just insisted that they never had any problems and never had any disagreements in their marriage. As they practiced the Speaker Listener Technique together (I insisted) they discovered the reason he thought they never had any problems or disagreements was that he never let his wife talk:. Once she was enabled to talk by using the SLT, he was actually happier. You can also protect your relationship by taking responsibility for your own behavior. Edit out negative responses. Jesus teaches us in Lk 6:31 (TL) to "Treat others as you want them to treat you." This should definitely apply to your spouse. Because two become one, when you build up your spouse you are also building up yourself and your marriage. In a cartoon a woman asked her husband, "what do you think about renewing our wedding vows?" He responded, "Let me think it over, when do they expire?" Your vows are for life. They never expire.

The Better Half "When your partner won't support your efforts to make your marriage better" Without your spouse's support to improve your marriage, you can still pray daily for God's will to be done in each of your lives and your marriage ("all things are possible with God", Mk 10:27 NI). Much of what is mention above can still be done. You can take responsibility for your own behavior, anticipative problems, edit out negative responses and treat your spouse, the same way you would want them to treat you.

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