The Great Face Off: PRIDE V.S. HUMILITY

Father in Jesus Name I pray that Your Spirit makes this relevant to my life right now and help me to grow spiritually because of it. Lord, let me finish it all and not get distracted. Speak to me so I can speak to the world about You in Jesus Name. Amen.

What is PRIDE?

The Greek word for “pride” is “graggadocio” which means boasting [alazoneia ἀλαζονεία]

How often do we boast about things?  It’s an example of pride.  We can do it through various ways, words, social media and even just showing something off that we have.  We can even boast about how much of the Bible we do or know but one of the worst signs of pride is coming to Jesus Christ in prayer talking about our “good works” that we have done in order to “have a blessing or prayer answered.” 

 

One thing is for sure: God doesn’t like pride and gives us many warnings of it through the Word of God: “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 He also goes in depth with: “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. These are the things we should avoid in our lives, but the focal point of this is PRIDE.

Let’s compare one of Jesus’ parables to our lives:

“Two men went up into the temple to pray; the one a Pharisee, and the other a publican. The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, God, I thank thee, that I am not as other men are, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this publican. I fast twice in the week, I give tithes of all that I possess. And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner. I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other: for every one that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted.” ~ Luke 18:10-14 (King James Version)

 

Jesus is giving a description between humility and pride in prayer and more than likely how these two people conducted their lives.  If we are honest we have all put our “good works” in Gods face in hopes that He would answer our prayers and not only answer it, but answer them fast.  However, this is not the plan of God.  It’s seen in this parable found in Luke 18:10-14. One of them came to God showing his sinfulness and one came to God showing his works and God looked at the person who showed their sin and not their deeds and blessed him. Salvation is by confessing of sins, grace and faith alone.

 

The only humility that is really ours is not that which we try to show before God in prayer, but that which we carry with us in our daily conduct.” ~ Andrew Murray

We need to guard out mouths in all areas in our lives, even in prayer because sometimes pride makes its entrance through our lips, but it’s always sitting in our hearts due to our nasty sinful nature that we all have.

Jesus also said:  

“And he went on to say, "It is what comes out of you that makes you unclean. For from the inside, from your heart, come the evil ideas which lead you to do immoral things, to rob, kill, commit adultery, be greedy, and do all sorts of evil things; deceit, indecency, jealousy, slander, pride, and folly--- all these evil things come from inside you and make you unclean." (Matthew 7:20-23 GNB)

 

All of our pride is found deep within our heart and nobody is pride-less unless they have transitioned to be with The LORD in Heaven (2 Corinthians 5:8).  However, humility is a fruit of the Holy Spirit and that fruit grows in the lives of Christians as we develop in our walk with Jesus through prayer, studying the Bible, giving, attending a godly Church and serving in it, etc. etc.

Paul tells us that humility is a fruit that grows and is not immediately made at salvation: “But the Spirit produces love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, humility, and self-control. There is no law against such things as these.” ~ Galatians 5:22-23 (Good News Bible)

WHY ARE ARGUMENTS STARTED?

Arguments are always started by a heart filled with pride and selfishness that soon turns into words and actions that we later regret.  These words can hurt our family, friends, Churches, Ministers, marriages, relationships, etc. etc. How many times have we said and done things that hurt people but in the end hurts us as well? God even speaks to us about that, the Bible says: “Arrogance comes, then comes shame.” ~ Proverbs 11:2 (Gods Word)

The Bible is clear pride causes contention and strife: “Only by pride cometh contention.” (Proverbs 13:10 KJV)

“What leads to strife (discord and feuds) and how do conflicts (quarrels and fightings) originate among you? Do they not arise from your sensual desires that are ever warring in your bodily members?” ~ James 4:1 (AMPLIFIED)

“Quarrels and fights among believers are always harmful. James explains that these conflicts result from evil desires battling within us: We want more possessions, more money, higher status, more recognition. When we don't get what we want, we fight in order to have it. Instead of aggressively grabbing what we want, we should submit ourselves to God, ask God to help us get rid of our selfish desires, and trust him to give us what we really need.” ~ Life Application Study Bible

THE DANGER OF BOASTING:

Pride gets no pleasure out of having something, only out of having more of it than the next man.” ~ C.S. Lewis

"I warned the proud, 'Stop your boasting!' I told the wicked, 'Don't raise your fists! Don't raise your fists in defiance at the heavens or speak with such arrogance.” ~ Psalm 75:4-5 (New Living Translation)

God is serious about us not boasting about what we have, have done or want to do. The Lord wants us to live humbly, depending on Him.  Anytime we boast in anything but the Cross (Galatians 6:14) we are glorifying something that isn’t of God.  However, look how easy it is to boast, we can show off our car, body, life, houses etc. etc. you may say “but I am bragging that God did all that for me,” but pride can easily creep into a person’s heart without even noticing it. Pride is a camouflaged spirit. We need to be careful with boasting and do like Paul: As for me, however, I will boast only about the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ.  (Good News Bible)

To show how much God hates pride and boasting He even mentions it in our salvation: “God saved you by His grace when you believed. And you can't take credit for this; it is a gift from God. Salvation is not a reward for the good things we have done, so none of us can boast about it.” (Ephesians 2:8-9 New Living Translation) The truth is God is serious about us not boasting about anything but the things of God. Period.

 

PREJUDICE AND PRIDE:

Prejudice always starts from a prideful heart. Period.

Jonah was also someone who was prideful and prejudice.  The Ninevites were great enemies to the Children of Israel. Jonah was mad as he could be when his message of salvation through The LORD caused the whole city to repent and turn to God. “This change of plans greatly upset Jonah, and he became very angry. So he complained to the LORD about it: "Didn't I say before I left home that You would do this, LORD? That is why I ran away to Tarshish! I knew that You are a merciful and compassionate God, slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love. You are eager to turn back from destroying people.” ~ Jonah 4:1-2 (New Living Translation) However, Jonah was still dealing with prejudice and pride but God never stopped working on him and God will never stop working on us. However, God does want us to pray and try to lay down our pride and our prejudices.

Luke 5:8 says: “When Simon Peter saw this happen, he knelt down in front of Jesus and said, "Lord, don't come near me! I am a sinner." (Contemporary English Version) The very same Peter humble enough to receive salvation and acknowledge His sin before the presence of Jesus Christ the King, the One who forgives all of our sins past, present and future had a prejudiced and racial spirit on him.  Let’s not forget to acknowledge that after the Holy Spirit filled him he did great works for God, but the prejudiced spirit was still there.  This gives us insight into the fact that we don’t have to be perfect to walk with God or to accept Gods salvation. He takes us as we are but He will work in us until we get to Heaven (Philippians 1:6)

God saw this prideful spirit in Peter and gave an example of the Jewish Law the area Peter was most “devout” in.  He let down a sheet of unclean food three times and each time Peter said: “But Peter said, Not so, Lord; for I have never eaten any thing that is common or unclean.” – Acts 10:14 (King James Version) Peter was prejudiced and thought the Gentiles didn’t merit salvation, forgetting that he himself didn’t merit or do anything good to receive this great gift of salvation.   Peter was in the process of being broken of his arrogance and pride and God knew how to get his attention.  At the time the vision took place Peter was hungry and God used his bodily desire to crucify his fleshly pride.

“Not so Lord” is always a sign of pride and rebellion creeping into the life of the Christian believer. But let’s look at someone who said “Yes, Lord” and made an eternal impact that is still taking place in our lives through Paul’s New Testament writings that we love to hear, read and study.

 “Now there was a believer in Damascus named Ananias. The Lord spoke to him in a vision, calling, "Ananias!" "Yes, Lord!" he replied.” ~ Acts 9:10 (New Living Translation)

It’s almost as if Ananias was just waiting to do something great for The Lord. Look at his reply; he was anticipating doing something for God and God called him to do something. Ananias had the right attitude “Yes, Lord!” However, he was nervous to speak to Paul because of Paul’s past of killing others, even after Paul’s conversion people doubted his salvation.  Ananias proves our availability to God causes opportunity to do something for God.

Although Ananias was scared he knew God had called him to do something special for the Kingdom and he saw the fear and went anyways. He had to visit Paul and cure his blindness that took place on the road to Damascus. Ananias had the spirit of humility which was able to make him “in tune” with God to do whatever God would have him to do.  We don’t speak much about Ananias and He isn’t recorded much in the Bible, but he helped Paul the Apostle who wrote over half of the New Testament that we love and read all the time. Ananias’ humility changed the world and he never took credit for Gods call to help Paul.  

What Jesus forbids is self-righteous, officious, hasty, unmerciful, prejudiced, and unwarranted condemnation based on human standards and human reasoning.” ~ John MacArthur

FINAL THOUGHT/SCRIPTURES:

God wants us to search our heart in quiet time with Him as the Holy Spirit shows us the areas of pride and as He does show us those areas He wants us to confess them to Him in order to have victory over them.

“But if we confess our sins to Him, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness.” ~ 1 John 1:9 (New Living Translation)

“Reverence for the LORD is an education in itself. You must be humble before you can ever receive honors.” ~ Proverbs 15:33 (Good News Bible)

“Happy are those who are humble; they will receive what God has promised!” ~ Matthew 5:5 (Good News Bible)

QUESTIONS FOR YOU:

Have you bragged about anything lately that you know is designed to glorify and show off what you have (regardless of the addition of the “glory to God” to try to justify our bragging?)

Have you noticed how often pride starts arguments in relationships you are involved in?

Do you see any traces of pride right now, if so what are you doing to get rid of it? (Example: Prayer, the Bible, Serving, Forgiving, etc. etc.)

“Knowing God without knowing our own wretchedness makes for pride. Knowing our own wretchedness without knowing God makes for despair. Knowing Jesus Christ strikes the balance because He shows us both God and our own wretchedness.” ~ Blaise Pascal

Father in Jesus Name I come to You and ask You to let the fruit of humility grow in abundance in my life and may my life be an example of Your love and Grace towards all people in Jesus Name. Amen.

WANT TO ACCEPT JESUS CHRIST AS YOUR SAVIOR FROM YOUR SINS? CLICK “HOW TO KNOW JESUS”

“Behold, now is the day of salvation.” ~ 2 Corinthians 6:2 (King James Version)

Remember, you do NOT have to be perfect or “get your life together” to accept Jesus as your Savior from your sin. He loves you just like you are! (Romans 5:8)

“I will never turn away anyone who comes to me.” ~ Jesus (John 6:37 GNB)

“The Spirit and the bride say, "Come!" Everyone who hears this should say, "Come!" If you are thirsty, come! If you want life-giving water, come and take it. It's free!” ~ Revelation 22:17 (Contemporary English Version)

BIBLE STUDY TOOLS GUARANTEED TO BLESS YOUR LIFE:

If you have a computer you can download a GREAT Bible study tool called “E-Sword” found at www.E-Sword.net (also for iPad’s). If you download this, you can also download many free Bible commentaries (helping to explain scriptures to you), dictionaries and Bible versions.

www.ChristianBook.com (Order a Study Bible) Life Application Study Bible

§  KJV Study Bible

§  MacArthur Study Bible

§  The Jeremiah Study Bible

§  The Word for Today Bible available @ (twft.org)

Some Commentaries (Matthew Henry’s, J. Vernon McGee, or Bible Believers Commentary), Naves Topical Bible (Free on E-Sword), Bible dictionaries (Holman); etc.) or www.Amazon.com (And grab a highlighter)

Great books to buy: • “Disciplines of the Holy Spirit” Dr. Tann/Gregg

• “How to Listen to God” ~ Dr. Charles Stanley

• “How to Reach Your Full Potential for God” ~ Dr. Charles Stanley (www.InTouch.org)

• “How to Study the Bible” ~ Dr. Charles Stanley

• “Living Waters” ~ Chuck Smith (www.twft.org)

• “Success God's Way: Achieving True Contentment And Purpose” ~ Dr. Charles Stanley

• “When the Storm Hits” ~ Chuck Smith

• “Married. Happily.” ~ Greg Laurie

• “FAITH” ~ Chuck Smith

• “EMOTIONS” ~ Charles Stanley

GREAT BIBLE TEACHERS WITH FREE BIBLE STUDIES ONLINE:

Pastor Chuck Smith [Check out his library on the site] (www.twft.org)

Dr. Charles Stanley of In-touch Ministries (www.intouch.org )

Greg Laurie of Harvest Ministries (www.harvest.org)

Bishop T.D Jakes of The Potters House (www.thepottershouse.org)

Dr. J. Vernon McGee (www.ttb.com)

Dr. David Jeremiah (www.davidjeremiah.org)