Pride in a man’s heart is a seed bed which produces many a foul fruit. I will mention a few: “Arrogance,” (Proverbs 8:13), “Contention,” (Proverbs13:10), self-deception, “The pride of thine heart hath deceived thee” (Obadiah 1:3). These are but a few of the un-tasty fruits which grow on the ugly vine of pride.
From personal experience many preachers know something of the deceptive power of pride. Looking forward to Sunday, the pastor asks God in prayer for a message and for divine enablement in delivery of the message. God, in grace, grants his petition, and after the sermon someone is kind enough to speak complimentary of the message (there is nothing wrong with paying the preacher a compliment, if it comes from the heart, and you realize the preacher is but an instrument of God), due to the deceptive power of pride, the compliment is often taken wrongly and the preacher takes to himself the credit which belongs to God.
No saint has ever risen so high in his cultivation of humility that all of his pride was left behind or even suppressed to the point of absolute dormancy for a single minute. Neither has the skid row bum sunk so low that he cannot look down his nose at someone else and find a basis to be proud of himself.
As soon as a man be born in this world he embarks on an ego trip, “They go astray speaking lies,” (Psalm 58:3) and the most of his lies are spent in bragging about himself. Most of the auto-biographies which I have read amount to nothing more than brag books. The reason is; “Every way of man is right in his own eyes” (Proverbs 21:2).
Did you ever hear a person pray, saying, “Lord keep me humble?” There is an element of pride in such a prayer. The meekest saint needs to pray, “Lord make me humble.” I heard a person say one time, “I am proud that I am humble.” 0’ the deceitfulness of pride.
Jesus used one statement on three different occasions in three different sermons. He was not afraid someone might say, “He repeats himself.” Each time Jesus used the statement it fit perfectly with the lesson He was teaching, and the principle set forth in the statement pervaded all of His teaching. The thrice stated words of the Master, “And whosoever shall exalt himself shall be abased, and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted,” (Matthew 23:12; Luke 18:14). On every occasion it was used to counter human pride, and it points up the fact that the seats of honor in glory are reserved for those who humble themselves and practice self-effacement.
Let us note some Scriptural accounts of destruction which resulted from the deceitfulness of pride.
Pride Brought Lucifer’s Fall
Lucifer’s declaration of independence is recorded in Isaiah 14:12-15. In this Scripture the second will is introduced to the universe, and every “will” that endeavors to act independent of God is in great measure motivated by pride. Lucifer says five times in quick succession, “I will,” and in each instance a desire for self-exaltation is manifested. Lucifer says, “I will exalt my throne above the stars of God.” God says, “Whosoever exalts himself shall be abased” and He says to Lucifer, “Yet thou shalt be brought down to hell, to the sides of the pit” (Isaiah 12:15). By this Scripture we are made aware of Satan’s destruction and doom yet, we need to remember this prophecy is at this date unfulfilled. Satan has lost the honor of being the anointed cherub but he has not lost his earthly princedom. It would help us if we remembered Lucifer had a throne, and that he is still the “Prince of the power of the air” and “the god of this world.”
It was through pride that our first parents in the garden of Eden fell. Eve gave a hearing to Satan’s challenge of God’s word. (WARNING! Do not reason with the Devil. He is far more cunning than the wisest saint in the realm of the intellect.) The lies of Satan, “Ye shall be as Gods,” instilled pride in Eve. She “saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat.”(Genesis 3:6). Since it worked with Eve, Satan has tried it with all of her children, but the aged and sagacious apostle John warns, “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. And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth forever” (I John 2:16-17). Lucifer’s was the original God defying pride, and though he was the highest in the order of God’s creatures, pride plummeted him to the pit of eternal destruction (Revelation 19:20).
We invite you and your family to join us for worship at Grace Missionary Baptist Church located at The Glowmar Bridge. Sunday School 11:00 am Worship 12:00 Evening Worship 7:00 pm Prayer Meeting and Bible Study 7:00 pm Wenesday Brother Fred Mnks and Elder Cahrles Minks.