Christian devotions in the Daily-Message

Christian devotions in the Daily-Message

Pride and haughtiness

“These six things doth the Lord hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him: A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, an heart that deviseth wicked imaginations, feet that be swift in running to mischief, a false witness that speaketh lies, and he that soweth discord among brethren.”

Proverbs 6:16-19
 

Of significance is that, in the things that God hates, He mentions pride first. If someone over-estimates himself (and thereby automatically underestimates others) it points strongly towards the direction of haughtiness and egotism, as well as the inclination towards arrogance, evil and sin. Pride is the root of evil. For this reason, God made this clear statement, as we read in 1 Peter 5:5 “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.” Pride is not only a negative characteristic of unbelievers, also Christians are sometimes affected by it. A pious, pride person is maybe even worse because he disputes everything which comprises of God's blessings. God, so to speak, reacts “sensitively” to every form of pride and arrogance – Isaiah 13:11 “And I will punish the world for their evil, and the wicked for their iniquity; and I will cause the arrogancy of the proud to cease, and will lay low the haughtiness of the terrible.” Through pride one thinks one is able to emancipate oneself from God. That was also the trigger for Satan's rebellion and his sin of pride against God (Isaiah 14:14). Subservience towards the LORD prevents the risk of looking down in arrogance upon others and the inability to learn or comprehend anything. Only the humble and thus perceptive person can hope upon God's mercy, His word and His movement. The pride of heart expresses itself in one's behaviour. We read in 1 Peter 5:6-7 “Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time: Casting all your care upon Him; for He careth for you.” We cannot follow Jesus when we exalt ourselves and think ourselves all-important.

No-one can simultaneously glorify himself and Jesus Christ! When we read in the Bible what the LORD hates, we can easily recognize and conclude what God loves and would love to see in us. We read in Zechariah 8:16 “These are the things that ye shall do; Speak ye every man the truth to his neighbour; execute the judgement of truth and peace in your gates: And let none of you imagine evil in your hearts against his neighbour; and love no false oath: for all these are things that I hate, saith the Lord.” This also includes something like civil courage, whereunder it is today understood to be the response to the prevailing opinion, with which the individual, without self-regard, represents the social value or universal opinion (as Christian according to God's values) of which he himself is convinced. What God expects of us, He defined very clearly in Philippians 2:1-5 “If there be therefore any consolation in Christ, if any comfort of love, if any fellowship of the Spirit, if any bowels and mercies, fulfil ye My joy, that ye be likeminded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind. Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves. Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others. Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus.” This demands honesty and self-examination from us, and last but not least, always looking towards Calvary, where forgiveness and each new beginning has a redeeming name : Jesus Christ!

(Translated by Linda Gates)

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