From A Slice of Infinity:
Dallas Willard, writing about the spiritual discipline of the secrecy Jesus espouses in the Sermon on the Mount says, “one of the greatest fallacies of our faith, and actually one of the greatest acts of unbelief, is the thought that our spiritual acts and virtues need to be advertised to be known….secrecy, rightly practiced enables us to place our public relations department entirely in the hands of God….we allow him to decide when our deeds will be known and when our light will be noticed.”(1) When we desire godly secrecy, Willard goes on to suggest that love and humility before God will develop to the point that we will not only see our friends, family, and associates in a better light, but we will also develop the very Christian virtue of desiring their good above our own.(2) Paul expressed this very truth to the Philippian church when he told them to “do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves; do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others” (2:3-4).
Perhaps this practice of secrecy is why Jesus urged many of those he healed not to reveal his identity. Perhaps this practice of secrecy is why Jesus avoided the crowds and would often go off to “lonely places” to pray. Whatever the case, we can follow Jesus more closely as his disciples by keeping secrets–secret piety, secret prayer, and secret giving. “And your Father who sees in secret will repay you” (Matthew 6:18).