These verses from the musical Carousel offer a way of viewing the readings from the third Sunday of Lent. In the musical a man named Jigger sings:
I've never seen it yet to fail
I'll never see it fail
A girl who's in love with a virtuous man
Is doomed to weep and wail
Stonecutters cut it on stone
Woodpeckers peck it on wood
There's nothin' so bad for a woman
As a man who thinks he's good!
In the Ex 20:1-7 we hear the ten commandments. In 1 Cor 1 22-25 Paul writes that the Greeks look for wisdom but that this is not sufficient. While it may seem odd, I contend that the verses from Carousel provide a perspective. Here it is: Even if we keep all of the commandments and search philosophy and study human behavior this will only make us think we are good. We run the risk of being self-satisfied, narrow-minded and angry because we can keep to a code of behavior and understand the truth. Such a man is bad for a woman especially if he thinks he is good.
Codes of behavior and wisdom will not save us from ourselves. They can - and often do - blind us to our own faults and shortcomings. In ordered to be rescued from our own blindness we need to acknowledge our own lack of power and understanding. Once we do that we can, with Paul, accept "Christ, the power and wisdom of God." With that we can eventually become the good persons that God created us to be.