On the Christian Life – John Calvin

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Playing the Pharisee Card

This article  answers the following five essential questions on playing the Pharisee Card.
Were the Pharisees concerned with doctrinal purity?
Were the Pharisees resistant to change?
Were the Pharisees unconcerned for the lost?
Why did Jesus really condemn the Pharisees?
Who are the real Pharisees?

Just like the Race or Gender Cards, the Pharisee Card is not designed to raise a legitimate issue of doctrine or practice. Rather, the Pharisee Card is used to discredit someone by implying that he is narrow, rigid, and unloving—a Pharisee. Most often these days, the Pharisee Card is played to portray a fellow Christian as a “doctrinal purist,” resistant to change, and therefore, unconcerned for the lost.