Self-justification is the sweet vice of our life. Man is a moral being who is constantly tormented by the question: "To whom should I give the weight of my sins?" Most often, the distribution includes parents, “tainted” genes, stars by which fate is predicted, or the era in which we are brought up. Parents, in most cases, are confident in the integrity of their children, placing responsibility on friends and society, thereby making the fate of their offspring difficult.
Self-justification is an ancient sin
Self-justification is one of the oldest sins. Adam was the first to do it while still in the Garden of Eden. He shifted his responsibility to Eve, and then to God himself. Since then, the human race has continuously committed this sin. Thus, Adam laid a model of behavior in every person. And to rectify the situation, a new Adam (Christ) comes to Earth. As a result, everything changes in life with Christ, but the final result will depend on the desires of each individual person.
Self-justification in the modern world
Modern man is crafty. He tries to make excuses everywhere. Unfortunately, Orthodoxy is also turning into a kind of excuse factor. If you do not call a church person to account and find out the reason for a particular act, he can name various reasons that prompted him to do so. The Christian will say briefly: "The demon has beguiled."
A similar example, but on the scale of an entire country, could be found in pre-revolutionary times. Shortly before this event, prostitution was legalized. There were legalized brothel houses, and the women who worked there had to receive communion every year, confess and make notes about it with the priest. They did not have the right to work during fasting and on major church holidays. It turns out that people did not get rid of sin, but tried to combine the incompatible. In this case, it is sin and Orthodoxy, involuntarily making excuses that they are not able to overcome this misfortune. All this became one of the reasons for the 1917 revolution.
Suvorov, being an Orthodox person, very carefully planned his military operations: he strengthened the defensive lines, placed his military force in a special way and then said: "What I could, I did everything, and now let it be as God willing." It is very important that Christians of the 21st century do not give a reason to those who are looking for it, so that they do not turn Christianity into a go-ahead and do not make it a factor of self-justification. A person needs to develop all his resources, give himself all to what he does, and then completely rely on the will of God.
Self-justification in Orthodoxy
Any business requires strategic planning. God has the right to mix ours, but man plans and hopes for God's help. If everything is successful, he thanks the Creator, and in the event of an unfavorable coincidence, he must come to terms with the state of affairs and live on, trusting in His holy will.
Any problem can be decomposed into two opposite signs. In self-justification, the extreme "minus" is the guilt of everyone except oneself. The extreme "plus" fully implies one's own guilt. These are poles that do not contain conclusive truth. We are children of the era who live according to modern foundations. The era puts a certain stamp on its people. And in this regard, everyone is justified as he can.
Some degree of self-justification can be called the relaxation of the rules of confession and communion for some parishioners. Thus, thanks to such a “weakness” on the part of the clergy, the path to Christ was opened for many weak-minded people. In fact, in this case, we are not talking about self-justification, but about an adequate reduction in disciplinary requirements for a person, based on his spiritual and physical condition. This is pedagogy, because we cannot load a healthy peasant and a weak old man with the same duties.
Born into a family of unbelievers, some place the blame for their unbelief on their relatives and ancestors, thus justifying themselves. At the same time, on their part, they do not even make efforts to enter the Church of Christ. And vice versa, people become believers in the family of atheists, which significantly increases the value of their faith.
We need to understand that until we admit our guilt, we have no courage to hope for God's mercy and condescension. It is better to take on everything with full confidence of your guilt, and then the all-merciful Lord will be our advocate and will certainly justify.
Based on a conversation with Archpriest Andrei Tkachev