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Sentence Sermons (Christian Inspiration) #97 --- Selfishness

Updated on September 30, 2015

Quotations on Selfishness

Concentration upon the self, the satisfaction of selfish aims and appetites, not only injures society, but the individual. Even devotion to self-development of character can be injurious if it is not accompanied by service.

---Milton Bennion, Salt Lake Telegram, Salt Lake City, Utah, June 4, 1934.

Selfish regard acts as a brake upon the wheel of life.

---George R. Gebauer, Duluth Herald, Duluth, Minn., March 30, 1914.

Selfishness makes people unhappy. It concentrates our minds on too small a world. It makes us discontented with our conditions. Selfish people become truly miserable when they see others succeed or happy. They spent their time in making wrong comparisons between their blessings and the blessings of others. They do not “count their blessings;” they discount them.

---Abram Duryee,, Christian Intelligencer, New York, N.Y., July 7, 1920.

The best cosmetic is an unselfish spirit.

---William T. Ellis, Binghamton Press, Binghamton, N.Y., Aug. 11, 1916.

Wherever you find an unselfish man, you have discovered a heavenly aristocrat.

---Frank Crane, Aurora Daily Express, Aurora, Ill., June 18, 1898.

Love is the keystone of the arch of virtues. Selfishness is the bondage. The man that is controlled by love is the man that is free; the selfish man is a slave to bonds of his own welding.

---A.C. Hirst, Omaha Daily Bee, Omaha, Neb., Oct. 14, 1901.

There is a duel ever going on within us, account for it as we may. Selfishness is ever at war with love. If selfishness wins, love will die. If love wins, selfishness will die.

---John Grant Newman, Philadelphia Inquirer, Philadelphia, Pa., Oct. 17, 1925.

The greatest mistake in the world is selfishness.

---Edmund J. Kiefer, Buffalo Courier-Express, Buffalo, N.Y., Oct. 25, 1931.

There is a way to happiness for everybody, and that is finding the larger meaning of life. Self-concern is a great robber of happiness; for the more things we want, the more things are taken away from us. Selfishness turns the heart inside out, but service and sacrifice turn all of the outside world into the heart. Living selfishly, irreligiously, unmindfully of the Author of the universe, is to be a parasite in the scheme of created things, subsisting on bounty without paying tribute, boasting to be self-sufficient yet ignoring the responsibility of dependence.

---Edmund J. Kiefer, Buffalo Courier-Express, Buffalo, N.Y., Feb. 28, 1932.

The man who is all wrapped up in himself is apt to have a blanket effect on his associates.

---Edward James Stackpole, Harrisburg Telegraph, Harrisburg, Pa., June 6, 1915.

Selfishness in a man cancels any virtues he may possess.

---Henry Edward Warner, Richmond Times-Dispatch, Richmond, Va., Dec. 27, 1915.

I have met people so contemptibly stingy that they talked through their nose to keep from wearing out their false teeth.

---Billy Sunday, Washington Herald, Washington, D.C., Jan. 7, 1918.

The supreme lesson of all religions is self-forgetfulness. If you will but get the self out of the world, you will at the same time get out all iniquity.

---Paul F. Sutphen, Lockport Daily Journal, Lockport, N.Y., May 23, 1898.

The refinements of selfishness in modern times has become so exquisite and attractive it is difficult to believe, sometimes, that it is selfishness. The fruits of selfishness, however, are just as ugly and hideous as ever. It is this everlasting self-seeking that is making the world so miserably unhappy.

---Milo Atkinson, El Paso Herald, El Paso, Texas, Aug. 28, 1920.

If we are blindly following our own selfish desires, without a thought as to where they are leading us, we are simply worshiping Satan unconditionally.

---Henry Easter, El Paso Herald, El Paso, Texas, March 27, 1911.

Selfishness is always fighting self-preservation for the lead as the first law of nature.

---Frank Hilton Greer, Oklahoma State Capital, Guthrie, Okla., Oct. 6, 1910.

Selfish lives are failures. Men who appear to be successful whether in finance or religion, who have lived only for themselves, have killed the joy out of life and sold the generosity and joy of their childhood for a mess of pottage. The opposite of selfishness is godliness. A godly man makes God the center of his universe. A selfish man is always joyless. There is nothing winsome in a selfish person.

---Irving Peake Johnson, Duluth Herald, Duluth, Minn., Sept. 6, 1915.

The smallest man on the face of the earth is the one who sees only himself.

---Elijah Powell Brown, Bolivar Breeze, Bolivar, N.Y., Nov. 2, 1894.

Selfishness is the substance of sin and sorrow its shadow.

---Elijah Powell Brown, Duluth Evening Herald, Duluth, Minn., Nov. 4, 1899.

Penury makes servility, and penury at one end of society makes snobbery at the other.

---Edward Howard Griggs, Jamestown Evening Journal, Jamestown, N.Y., Aug. 4, 1936.

Snobbery and servility go together.

---Edward Howard Griggs, New York Tribune, New York, N.Y., Nov. 22, 1908.

Confidence cannot dwell where selfishness is porter at the gate.

---Theophile Meerschaert, The Indian Advocate, Sacred Heart, Okla., February 1903.

No man who ever lived a life of selfishness ever found enduring happiness.

---Roy L. Smith, Buffalo Courier-Express, Buffalo, N.Y., Aug. 30, 1930.

A man who lives only for himself seldom finds life worthwhile.

---Roy L. Smith, Buffalo Courier-Express, Buffalo, N.Y., Dec. 10, 1930.

It is not likely that any of us in our following Christ will endanger our bodily life. But there is a higher life that may be lost while caring to preserve the bodily life. So far as a man makes it his chief aim to win a way for himself and make himself, he is likely to come to a point beyond which his own best efforts cannot carry him, and yet that point is not nearly high enough to be for him the best and truest life his nation requires. When self is the aim and all effort is bent in that direction, we not only fail to win, but we lose self. But when losing sight of self, we address self to effort whose motive is for Christ’s sake, we may not only serve Christ and find Christ, but therein serve self and find self’s true life.

---A.M. Campbell, St. Louis Republic, St. Louis, Mo., June 8, 1903.

Forget yourself. You will never do anything great until you do. Self-consciousness is a disease with many. No matter what they do, they can never get away from themselves. They become warped upon the subject of self-analysis, wondering how they look, how they appear, what others will think of them, how they can enhance their own interests. In other words, every thought and every effort seems to focus upon self; nothing radiates from them.

No one can grow while his thoughts are self-centered. The sympathies of the man who thinks only of himself are soon dried up. Self-consciousness acts as a paralysis to all expansion, strangles enlargement, kills aspiration, cripples executive ability. The mind which accomplishes things looks out, not in, it is focused upon its object, not upon itself.

The immortal acts have been unconsciously performed. The greatest prayers have been the silent longings, the secret yearnings of the heart, not those which have been delivered facing a critical audience. The daily desire is the perpetual prayer, the prayer that is heard and answered.

---Orison Swett Marden, Success Magazine, New York, N.Y., January 1906.

Sin has many machines, but selfishness is the motor for them all.

---Henry F. Cope, Chicago Tribune, Chicago, Ill., April 11, 1909.

---Selfishness is the freezing point in the moral temperature of the world.

---R.J. Briggs, Austin Daily Statesman, Austin, Texas, Oct. 24, 1904.

There is really no purpose in life unless we can live an unselfish life.

---Henry D. Moyle, Paris District Conference, Paris, France, Dec. 16, 1959.

When self becomes the center of devotion, then sin gets into the life. Every departure from God is indeed a dangerous thing.

---Charles T. Alexander, The Baptist Chronicle, Alexandria, La., May 4, 1911.

Those who measure everything from a selfish standpoint will find that the world will pay them back in their own coin.

---J.B. Cranfill, Baptist Standard, Waco, Texas, April 11, 1895.

I have found that many people with emotional problems have abnormally inflated egos.

It is so easy to become self-centered and then to become sensitive. Being sensitive, we are easily hurt and our personal problems multiply. We notice every little slight by other people, we become jealous, our pride leads to unkind feelings toward others. We are hard to get along with. We live within our own little world with ourselves as our god and thus we are out of harmony with the rest of the world.

However, finally despaired of our ability to be our own god, to save ourselves, we look to a power greater than ourselves and immediately we become possessed by a new hope.

---Charles L. Allen, The Atlanta Constitution, Atlanta, Ga., Jan. 13, 1953.

Beware of selfishness, for selfishness defeats itself.

---William Jennings Bryan, Dallas Morning News, Dallas, Texas, Sept. 14, 1913.

The sin of selfishness may make you rich, but it will punish you by destroying the ability to enjoy your possessions.

---George Irving, Dallas Morning News, Dallas, Texas, Nov. 21, 1921.

Selfishness [is] the root of all sin. It has been called "The grandmother of many sins." Selfishness is the suicide of many otherwise noble characters. It is always the enemy of happiness and usefulness.

---William M. Anderson, Sr., Dallas Morning News, Dallas, Texas, April 24, 1921.

Selfishness, hate, and greed, which have been putting everything else worldly affairs first and God last, are the cause of wars and man's inhumanity to man in all other affairs.

---Melvin V. Strother, The New Era, Eunice, La., June 28, 1940.

Selfishness is the distemper of life. Selfishness is the suicide of all greatness. Selfishness is the apostasy of human existence. Selfishness is the downfall and defeat of the soul.

---George W. Truett, Houston Daily Post, Houston, Texas, June 11, 1917.

Self-will is treason to God's kingdom.

---J.E. Nunn, Amarillo Daily News, Amarillo, Texas, July 16, 1927.

When we pray for others we want to do something for others.

When we pray to God for others we are also heard for ourselves.

In all our praying we need to ask God to deliver us from selfishness.

---James DeForest Murch, Christian Standard, Cincinnati, Ohio, July 25, 1942.

Selfish prayers fall to the ground.

---Ernest C. Wareing, Western Christian Advocate, Cincinnati, Ohio, Oct. 17, 1929.

The man who lives for self and selfish ease is already wrecked on the curbstone of life's swine pen.

---M.H. Wolfe, Dallas Morning News, Dallas, Texas, March 8, 1915.

Love is unselfishness. "Love seeketh not her own." Love is the direct opposite of the vice of selfishness, for its effect is to throw down the limits that wall a man within himself, and lead him to mingle his interests with the good of others. Love alone will enable a man to escape from the stuffed and poisoned atmosphere of his own narrow self. Love is a streaming out of the inmost treasures of the heart, and a consecration of ourselves to the welfare of others. To love is to forget self, for love "seeketh not her own."

---T.R. Murphy, The Daily Picayune, New Orleans, La., Feb. 27, 1911.

Selfishness produces spiritual atrophy; it coarsens our finer sensibilities, deteriorates our nobler qualities of mind and heart, and man becomes to himself sensual and material, while to beneficence, to service and to sacrifice for others is due the core of history, the sole of oratory, the beauties of literature, the heroism of patriotism, the divinity of religion and the hope of eternity.

---Frederick Bowen, San Antonio Daily Express, San Antonio, Texas, Jan. 9, 1911.

A self-centered man is always handicapped in life, because he can never see what a fool he is making of himself. To others he is senseless, silly, empty-headed, lightminded and hair brained.

---Anderson M. Baten, Baptist Standard, Dallas, Texas, March 7, 1935.

Selfishness, the disposition to benefit one's self at the expense or to the humiliation of fellow human beings, is the core, the very heart of the iniquitous relations in all human affairs in family, community, state, nation and international.

---Carl Henry Gleeser, The Llano Colonist, New Llano, La., July 20, 1929.

Basically man is selfish. The center of attraction, the center of one's desires is "self." The ego, "I," stands out in every person. Every person desires to exercise his self-rights. Man doesn't care to be dominated or controlled in any manner.

As a result, man has become a slave to himself. He becomes a slave of his desires. When all of man's ambitions, goal and aim are to satisfy self, man's life is short-circuited. True happiness is not attained, it is only an artificial happiness. Jesus was not selfish nor ever became a slave to His desires, yet was successful and truly happy.

Countless multitudes are slaves not only to themselves but also to all kinds of unruly, unhealthy habits. The person accepting Christ, letting Him come into one's heart and obeying Him, is able to put aside "self." "They that are Christ's have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts . . ." (Galatians 5:24-25.)

---Cleveland Smith, The Daily Iberian, New Iberia, La., July 7, 1956.

The instincts of preservation were intended for a good purpose in both man and animals. It was intended that they should survive to do the work for which they were created, so they were made so that they would put up a fight to live and carry on. However, in man they brought about a bad result, for they made men selfish and each one battles for his life and all things he needed, so that started the selfish race which lead us into sin. Now this selfishness is just what causes us to sin and we will act like beasts, unless we learn to control our selfish lives. This is the great religious and spiritual problem we all have to solve. We must learn through teaching and experience to become unselfish, that we may bear the fruits of the spirit and not remain beastly in our natures. This will be a labor also and will have to be done against resistance. That means we must keep all of our animal instincts under complete moral control that we may bear higher fruits than any animal is capable of. This is the great task that is before us all. We must so curb the physical instincts that the divine nature within us can shine through the flesh.

---J.H. Funderburg, Lake Charles American Press, Lake Charles, La., Nov. 8, 1941.

Selfishness is an inside report that you ought to be served before the other fellow and you ought to have a good time no matter who suffers. It is a smooth trick of the devil to cause one to be selfish, for it obtains no pleasure and only gives offense.

---A.J. Gearheard, The Shreveport Times, Shreveport, La., May 13, 1923.

Selfishness is a very fruitful sin. It breeds envy, jealousy and covetousness. Out of these grow hatred, lying and dishonesty. The taproot of nearly all sin is found in selfishness.

---B.J.W. Graham, Christian Index, Atlanta, Ga., Aug. 24, 1916.

Selfishness is retroactive. In the long run it destroys the self from which it emanates. If it covets self-preferment in matters of position and honor to the hurt of others, it will in time lose both. Giving enriches and withholding impoverishes in these as well as in other matters.

---B.J.W. Graham, Christian Index, Atlanta, Ga., Sept. 21, 1916.

Selfishness and manliness are in very man in inverse ratio to each other. Selfishness is the root of many evils. It is back of the great divorce evil and all of the other evils of humanity. ... Selfishness has no place in God's universe. ... A selfish people constitutes almost a hopeless mass of material for any constructive Christian work and advancement.

---Carl C. Gregory, Dallas Morning News, Dallas, Texas, Dec. 29, 1924.


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