The Pharisees (in particular) formed the group that (he himself one of them) Paul addresses in Romans 2:21:
You, then, who teach another, do you not teach yourself?
What a powerful question to ask anyone who attempts to teach God’s Word!
Paul was demonstrating that not only Gentiles (Chapter 1), but also Jews, were sinners who needed to be justified by faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. They as well, were sinners: as he shows by addressing a series of telling questions growing out of this first one.
But the question had not to do with Pharisees alone; it remains for all who, today, profess to teach God’s Word. And it is a good one for all of us preachers to ask in order to regularly check up on our own lives.
Preachers how often do you ask yourself this question? What is the answer—or don’t you dare to take time to give an answer to it? We must never forget that we—as all of our people—are sinners saved by grace. Then we can preach with greater authority—as those who also needed to confess and seek forgiveness of sin. When we preach to the lost as those who have been redeemed by the blood of Christ, people will understand their need for a Savior. If we act as if we never had the experience of justification by faith in the cross, we will be looked upon as proud and self-righteous. Obviously, people will listen to those who recognize their plight—just as they will ignore those who act as if they are some special breed of cat.
I encourage you, preacher, to ask—and be ready to honestly answer the question (which you should ask yourself frequently).