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Thursday, June 19, 2014


Photo by: David Castillo Dominici

In the day of selfies, self-image, promoting self, one wonders, “Am I selfish?”

You bet we are!

Adam and Eve proved it’s part of our nature. Me first, you second—if I feel like it. Eve thought only of herself. She liked the looks of the fruit, liked what the serpent was telling her—that she’d be wise like God—and decided the fruit would be delicious. She forgot it would be deadly.

Then, nice wife that she was, she gave some to Adam, who only thought of himself. He wanted to do what Wife had done. Afterwards he blamed her—and God.

And, Eve blamed the serpent.


God calls it pride.

Now, I believe it’s healthy spiritually to have an accurate view of ourselves. We shouldn’t be down on who we are, since God loves us. If we are Christians, we’re redeemed sinners. (Jesus paid the price of all our sin when He died on the cross.) We are something, because of Jesus. But, we’re not something without Him. I will never understand His love.

So, what is pride?
  • It’s the opposite of humility. A man’s pride shall bring him low: but honour shall uphold the humble in spirit (Proverbs 29:23).
  • The dictionary defines pride as: a feeling of deep pleasure or satisfaction derived from one's own achievements,” and “the consciousness of one's own dignity.”*
  • The Bible says, Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall (Proverbs 16:18).

God hates pride. The fear of the LORD is to hate evil: pride, and arrogancy, and the evil way, and the froward mouth, do I hate (Proverbs 8:13).

Pride doesn’t come from God; it comes from the devil. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world (1 John 2:16). When the serpent tempted Eve, he put himself over God, misquoting and adding to God’s Word and telling half-truths. He appealed to her pride: Ye shall not surely die: For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil (Genesis 3:4b-5).

Why is pride so dangerous?
  • Pride gives us an unrealistic opinion of self. One of the reasons a pastor shouldn’t be a new, untested Christian is so that he wouldn’t become proud. Not a novice, lest being lifted up with pride he fall into the condemnation of the devil (1 Timothy 3:6).
  • Pride causes us to look down on others. The wicked in his pride doth persecute the poor: let them be taken in the devices that they have imagined (Psalm 10:2).
  • Pride influences our relationships. Only by pride cometh contention: but with the well advised is wisdom (Proverbs 13:10).
  • Pride causes people to speak wrongly. In the mouth of the foolish is a rod of pride: but the lips of the wise shall preserve them (Proverbs 14:3).
  • Most importantly, pride keeps us from total reliance on God. (We tend to depend on ourselves.) The wicked, through the pride of his countenance, will not seek after God: God is not in all his thoughts (Psalm 10:4).

Pride is actually being selfish. It’s not only “me first.” It’s also “me most important.” The Bible says we’re to esteem other(s) better than themselves, in lowliness of mind (from Philippians 2:3).

The best example? Jesus. Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father (Philippians 2:5-11).

It’s interesting that the biblical quality of humility results in God’s favor. Consider these verses:
  • And whosoever shall exalt himself shall be abased; and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted (Matthew 23:12).
  • But he giveth more grace. Wherefore he saith, God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble. Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up (James 4:6, 10).
  • Likewise, ye younger, submit yourselves unto the elder. Yea, all of you be subject one to another, and be clothed with humility: for God resisteth the proud, and giveth grace to the humble. Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time (1 Peter 5:5-6).

It is so much better for God to lift us up than for us to be prideful.

Have you ever noticed these attitudes?
  • I am smarter than she is.
  • I am prettier than she is.
  • I am able to do this, and she can’t.
  • I have good taste, and she doesn’t.
  • I am very conscious of my needs (material or otherwise).
  • I should be honored for _____________ (whatever reason).
  • I expect people to respect me.

When God says we should have a right opinion of ourselves, He doesn’t paint mankind with a pretty brush. He says, For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23)

That’s precisely why we need a Savior. And, that’s why we need to see ourselves as God sees us: sinners saved by grace.

May we have an accurate view of self and a godly view toward others. 


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