"I HATE PRIDE AND ARROGANCE"
Friend, examine yourself! Would you admit that you do think very highly of yourself, and sometimes more highly of yourself than of others? Most likely, you do, and that stems from pride! But what is pride? Synonyms for pride include arrogance, conceit, smugness, and self-importance. Does any of these describe you? Which one? Well, they all mean the same thing – pride.
What does God say about pride? He says, “I hate pride and arrogance” (Prov 8:13); “Pride goes before destruction, a haughty Spirit before a fall” (Prov 16:18). What does He say about the proud? He says, “The Lord detests all the proud of heart” (Prov 16:5a); “Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited” (Rom 12:16). Shouldn’t God’s disdain for pride cause us to rethink our prideful ways? If God hates something, it behooves us to pay attention, because He will not excuse anyone from the consequences of practicing what He hates.
The media recently reported incidents that demonstrate how fleeting life can be. In one instance, a huge airplane with over two hundred passengers on board disappeared without a trace; all of a sudden, life was over for them, their loved ones had nowhere to turn to for answers. Their bodies may never be recovered in whole, for proper burial. How sad! In another instance, without warning, a mudslide wiped out a whole region.
No matter how highly we think of ourselves, or how big our plans and aspirations are, life can come to a screeching halt, and without prior warning. How quickly our dreams can evaporate! Shouldn’t we be humbled by these kinds of events? The obvious answer is “Yes, we should be.”
The book of James challenges our pride and high-mindedness by asking, “What is your life?” He answers the question in that same verse, “You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes” (Ja 4:14b). We can conclude that we are not really all that if we can be swallowed up by mud, water, and whatever else, in an instant. Let us take note and humble ourselves! Paul admonishes us not to think of ourselves more highly than we ought to think, but to think soberly, as God has dealt to each one a measure of faith (Rom 12:3).
We need to humble ourselves, not only because life is so fragile and unpredictable, but most importantly, because God hates pride, and detests all the proud of heart.