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  • Samuel at Gilgal

    This year I will be sharing brief excerpts from the articles, sermons, and books I am currently reading. My posts will not follow a regular schedule but will be published as I find well-written thoughts that should be of interest to maturing Christian readers. Whenever possible, I encourage you to go to the source and read the complete work of the author.

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  • May 2008
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Pride

Edwin Chapin wrote, “Pride is the master sin of the devil.” I don’t know about you, but I think I know something about pride. It is a meal that I have feasted upon since I was a child. I cannot begin to tell you the number of times I’ve made mistakes because of the sin of pride. Pride has also cost me some great opportunities. It has taken its toll on relationships as well.

I knew I was in trouble the very first time I read 1 Peter 5:5: “God resists the proud, and gives grace to the humble.” Then I read Proverbs 16:18 which says, “Pride goes before destruction, and an haughty spirit before the fall.” I knew then that my new faith in Jesus Christ was not going to go as smoothly as I thought it would. C. S. Lewis could have been describing much of my life when he said, “A proud man is always looking down on things and people; and, of course, as long as you’re looking down, you can’t see something that’s above you.”

I know exactly when God saved me, but I think I believed at the time I was taking a consulting position with Him. I’m sure the angels were astonished by God’s grace in my salvation. Where I was wrong, however, the Holy Spirit made me willing to change and continues to work on making me easier to live with.

One of my former employees once told a friend that I had a reputation for being prejudiced against stupidity. A former superintendent said I had a reputation for being [words too colorful to use here]. Pride has a low threshold for tolerance and patience. In time I would do better, but as they say – “I’m still a work in progress.” God has been patient with me, as have my family and friends.

Pride is deceitful. It has become common currency in this nation of self-worshipers. Pride has come to mean “entitlement.” We have set our hearts on being held in high esteem. Once we think we have achieved this status, pride and arrogance consume us with the fear of losing it. On the other hand, God “leads the humble in what is right, and teaches the humble His way.” (Psalm 25:9) God’s way offers a much better alternative in eternity and greater contentment in the here and now. So, lose the pride and embrace the discipline of humility.

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