Humility and Pride

Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up. James 4:10

Humility is the subtle attribute that at first seems incidental, but in God’s word rises to be the most Christ-like characteristic that we could hope to attain. Being humble means putting the interest of others ahead of ourselves – just as Jesus did for us.

Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves; do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others. Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Jesus Christ, who although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God as a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. Philippians 2:3-8

In humble obedience, Jesus went to the cross to atone for our sins. It is therefore not difficult to reason why God, the ultimate righteous authority, would have no tolerance for the arrogance of man – a creature who exalts himself even though he, on his own merits, falls terribly short by any righteous measure. Read James 4:6

Being humble does not mean to think less of yourself, but instead to think of yourself less. This is not a lack of confidence, low self-esteem, or weak submissiveness but instead living in the confidence of your value to God and that he will take care of the circumstances of your life. Being humble is living with the absence of pride, working to serve others and not for your own gain.  In pride, we are self-focused, self-sufficient, ungrateful, and hardened to the saving grace of God. God is crystal clear that he abhors pride and arrogance. The Bible repeatedly warns against being prideful and exalts those who are humble.

A man’s pride will bring him low, but honour shall uphold the humble spirit. Proverbs 29:23

Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall. Better it is to be of an humble spirit with the lowly, than to divide the spoil with the proud. Proverbs 16:18-19

Jesus also tells us that to be the greatest is to be the least, like in the humility of a little child.

Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven. Matthew 18:4


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