Identifying the Spirit of Pride:
The spirit of pride grows from the root of bitterness in the heart. It often originates in self-righteousness and makes one wise in his/ her own eyes. Pride is based on falsehoods and prevents us from admitting any wrong in ourselves. Often when one is prideful, there are things they don’t like about themselves or know things they have done wrong but will never confess it and instead take on the mantle, everyone else is wrong but you. The proud feels he/ she is the standard that everyone else must come up to. Pride is also “Yeah I know I am wrong when I do this, but I am unwilling to change it”.
In the Hebrew, pride means to lift up self to be equal to. It is puffed up, stiff necked (stubborn) and stuck up. It is to act arrogantly and is the idolatrous worship of self.
- The spirit of pride gives in to greed when self feels it does not have enough.
- The spirit of pride gives in to envy when self feels someone less worthy has received the honor it deserves.
- The spirit of pride gives in to acting out in anger when self is offended.
- The spirit of pride gives in to a critical spirit when self’s esteem has been injured.
- The spirit of pride gives in to resentment when self has been threatened.
The spirit of pride promotes self-sufficiency. It says I can do it myself, I don’t need anyone’s help. God does not honor our self-made lives. He measures success based on obedience to His Word, plan and purpose PERIOD.
Pride and Haughtiness is the opposite of love. It is self-interest, while love is selfless interest in another.
- The Spirit of pride is easily offended and joy departs when pride is upset.
- The spirit of pride robs us of our peace with ourselves and others.
- The spirit of pride is unforgiving and says I don’t have to put up with this.
- The spirit of pride is rough and abrasive and the opposite of gentleness.
- The spirit of pride is good only to itself.
- The spirit of pride is faithful only to itself.
- The spirit of pride gives back handed comments in order to injure another and manipulate them.
The spirit of pride will not be limited by anything, anybody or even the Word of God. For it asks itself, why can’t I have, why can’t I do? It tells us that we are doing the best we can, even when our walk does not show it...
Two chapters later in Acts, the apostle Paul experiences people praising him and Barnabas after God healed a crippled man using Paul and Barnabas as vessels, “When the crowds saw what Paul had done, they lifted up their voices, saying, ‘The gods have come down to us in the likeness of men!’” (Acts 14:11). How does Paul respond to their praise? “We also are men, of like nature with you, and we bring you good news, that you should turn from these vain things to a living God, who made the heaven and the earth and the sea and all that is in them” (Acts 14:15).
Instead of soaking up the attention and basking in the glory, Paul and Barnabas grieved over it (Acts 14:14). And they used their new platform to proclaim all that God had done (Acts 14:15–17). Whenever people are under the impression that we have done something impressive, we have a golden opportunity to teach them we never do anything impressive or meaningful in our own wisdom or strength or ability. God and God alone gets all the glory and praise!
Dan Ousley - Worship Leader - StoneBridge Baptist Church