What is pride? Today it has come to mean something other than it is, that is, in the eyes of God. There is no rainbow and balloons to be decorated when it comes pride, because it comes from a heart of rebellion against its creator, God. This comes out clearly in the context of the new meaning it has been bestowed today.
Biblically speaking pride is the epitome of self-conceit, saying it is about me (not you) and ultimately matters and the goal. To be prideful is to think highly of oneself at the expense of another. It is self honouring, not God honouring. Where in contrast, scripture says we are to treat others better than ourselves. All who are not born of God walk freely and without reservation – in pride, but we as Christians can easily give over to it (and most often do!) if we are not careful. We mustn’t be fooled, for pride can mask itself as being humble, loving, accepting and compassionate, and its tell-tale is that it will not be tolerant to what is right(eous) and of God. Pride says, ‘who are you to tell me?’ because pride hates authority and seeks to be the authority. Pride has a motive – always because of its very nature, which is self-interest. So, the ‘good’ we do may be rooted in pride if we are not careful.
Pride was first exhibited to us through Satan’s rebellion against God. He took what God created him as a most beautiful angelic being with many attributes and qualities– to himself – rather than as evidence of God’s glory for all to see and enjoy. This cost Lucifer to be cast from God’s angelic host to become Satan – God’s enemy. In the same way, the Lord has instituted to us His creation – in ourselves and the world for us to participate with Him in revealing God’s glory. As we obey the Lord in His creation, we experience rich enjoyment in fulfillment and in turn, we are thankful and content; in contrast, the mark of one who walks in pride is discontent and never satisfied.
Our defense is to be watchful of this mighty enemy by recognizing its personality traits, some of which are:
Discontent with (always) having desires for more/better, envy, jealousy, gossiper, seeker of what feels good, looks (easily) at other’s faults and is easily offended if anyone points out own faults/weaknesses, exhibits strife/hatred when opposed, and one I struggle with: always has to have the last word.
When we walk in a spirit of pride, we cannot at the same time walk in the Spirit of God. To walk in a spirit of pride is to walk in enmity against God. To walk in unchecked pride, that is to where it becomes our accepted personality trait, is to be one who is stunted in our spiritual growth and at spiritual risk for quenching the Spirit of God in us.
Pride can be blatantly obvious but most often is not, so it often goes undetected to those who are not watchful over their heart and minds. Let us be watchful in keeping this foe far from us!
For all that is in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—is not of the Father but is of the world. 1 John 2:16
….God resists the proud and gives grace to the humble….1 Peter 5:5b