Manifestations of Pride

Greg Strand – October 1, 2013 Leave a comment

Stuart Scott, From Pride to Humility: A Biblical Perspective (Focus Publishing, 2002; an excerpt from The Exemplary Husband: A Biblical Perspective [2000]), notes some very insightful and penetrating traits of pride. I generally read, ponder and pray through this on a monthly basis.

Undergirding my prayer is the reminder of God’s response to pride and the proud: “God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble” (Jms. 4:6; cf. Prov. 3:34; 1 Pet. 5:5). This is important to grasp. If one is proud, God actively opposes that person. Making this personal, if I am proud, God actively opposes me.

As you read and pray through this list, ask yourself these two questions: First, what of these manifestations are in your life? Second, what pride in your life needs to be confessed?

Manifestations of Pride (pp. 6-10)

  1. Complaining against or passing judgment on God.
  2. A lack of gratitude in general.
  3. Anger.
  4. Seeing yourself as better than others.
  5. Having an inflated view of your importance, gifts and abilities.
  6. Being focused on the lack of your gifts and abilities.
  7. Perfectionism.
  8. Talking too much.
  9. Talking too much about yourself.
  10. Seeking independence or control.
  11. Being consumed with what others think.
  12. Being devastated or angered by criticism.
  13. Being unteachable.
  14. Being sarcastic, hurtful, or degrading.
  15. A lack of service.
  16. A lack of compassion.
  17. Being defensive or blame-shifting.
  18. A lack of admitting when you are wrong.
  19. A lack of asking forgiveness.
  20. A lack of biblical prayer.
  21. Resisting authority or being disrespectful.
  22. Voicing preferences or opinions when not asked.
  23. Minimizing your own sin and shortcomings.
  24. Maximizing other’s sin and shortcomings.
  25. Being impatient or irritable with others.
  26. Being jealous or envious.
  27. Using others.
  28. Being deceitful by covering up sins, faults, and mistakes.
  29. Using attention-getting tactics.
  30. Not having close relationships.

Thankfully forgiveness, healing and wholeness do not come in denial of these sins, but rather in confession of them. The confession “God, be merciful to me, a sinner” is followed by “this man went down to his house justified” (Lk. 18:13); “If we confess our sins,” is followed by “he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 Jn. 1:9).

The key biblical truth: “Everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but the one who humbles himself will be exalted” (Lk. 18:14b).

The key biblical response: “Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you” (1 Pet. 5:6; cf. Jms. 4:10).

 

 

Greg Strand

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Affectionately called “Walking Bible” by his youngest daughter, Greg Strand has a ministry history that goes back to 1982. Since that time, he has served in local church ministry in a variety of ministry capacities: youth pastor, associate pastor of adult ministries and senior pastor. He is currently the EFCA’s Executive Director of Theology and Credentialing. Greg reads voraciously and never stops learning — a passion reflected in the overflowing bookshelves that spill from his library to multiple offices. And he could tell you about each of those books! His hunger for learning pales in contrast to his great love for God and for teaching the Word of God.

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