The Defeat of Pride

Read: “You must have the same attitude that Christ Jesus had. Though he was God, he did not think of equality with God as something to cling to. Instead, he gave up his divine privileges; he took the humble position of a slave and was born as a human being. When he appeared in human form, he humbled himself in obedience to God and died a criminal’s death on a cross. Therefore, God elevated him to the place of highest honor and gave him the name above all other names, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue declare that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” Philippians 2:5-11 (NLT)

Reflect: Recent events coming out of Hollywood, politics and corporate America have revealed, again, how pride and arrogance result in pain and misery, both to the proud person and those affected by his or her arrogance. Our human nature, with its desire to control and to get what we want – no matter what – resists humility. In fact, in our culture humility is considered weakness and stupidity. Culture tells us that pride and arrogance are acceptable until we cross a line of conduct considered “unacceptable,” but we never know quite where that line is.

Unlike culture, God’s Word is clear that pride is sin. We are warned over and over in scripture that God opposes the proud but shows favor to the humble (James 4:6). Proverbs 16:18 says: “Pride goes before destruction, a haughty spirit before a fall.” Yet pride is one of the most difficult sins to root out in the life of the Christ-follower.   Pride is a matter of the heart, and we can easily deceive ourselves and others that we are not proud. In Philippians 2: 6-11 we see the example of Jesus who gave up everything in humble obedience to serve humankind, including us. He is now exalted by God, and every knee will bow to his name. Those that are humble will receive his approval and reign with him.

React: Do I trust God to provide what I need in every situation or do I pridefully assert myself, no matter who suffers? Can I be humble no matter the circumstances?

Pray: Lord, help me know that you are the source of all good things in my life and that you will take care of me, regardless of my situation. Help me to see the pride in my life and to become more humble each day as I seek and obey you.