You know, in the last few chapters, I've noticed a lot mentioned about pride and the dangers of pride.
Back in Proverbs 13:10, from yesterday's reading, this really stands out to me: "Only by pride cometh contention."
Hmmm.... consider the contention going on in your relationships today, or perhaps in our church.... Could pride and our lack of willingness to humble ourselves be the root of the some of the struggles we are facing?
I don't think we realize how dangerous and deadly is the sin of pride, especially spiritual pride!
In today's reading I see sobering passages like the following:
"The fear of the Lord is instruction of wisdom; and before honor is humility." (Prov. 15:33)
"Everyone that is proud in heart is an abomination to the Lord..." (Prov. 16:5)
"Pride goes 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." (Prov. 16:18-19)
Why is pride so deadly in our lives today? Why is pride so deadly spiritually?
I'm reminded of a quote that I share often in my messages when I talk about my own struggles with spiritual pride. Consider the following:
"Man’s judgment is partial, imperfect, but God estimates all things as they really are. The drunkard is despised and is told that his sin will exclude him from heaven; while pride, selfishness, and covetousness too often go unrebuked. But these are sins that are especially offensive to God, for they are contrary to the benevolence of His character, to that unselfish love which is the very atmosphere of the unfallen universe. He who falls into some of the grosser sins may feel a sense of his shame and poverty and his need of the grace of Christ; but pride feels no need, and so it closes the heart against Christ and the infinite blessings He came to give." (Steps to Christ, p. 30)
"God does not always choose for His work men of the greatest talents, but He selects those whom He can best use. “Before honor is humility.” Proverbs 15:33. The Lord can work most effectually through those who are most sensible of their own insufficiency, and who will rely upon Him as their leader and source of strength. He will make them strong by uniting their weakness to His might, and wise by connecting their ignorance with His wisdom. If they would cherish true humility, the Lord could do much more for His people..." (Patriarchs and Prophets, p. 553)
Let us humble ourselves before the Lord today and ask Him to take away our pride. Let us humble ourselves before our fellow man. There is no limit to the usefulness of one, who putting self aside, makes room for the Holy Spirit. And this is what we desperately need, to put self aside...
Tomorrow's Reading: Prov. 17-18 and Ps. 91