Posts Tagged ‘quotes’


Under Gods Command

Proverbs 19:28 A corrupt witness mocks at justice, and the mouth of the wicked gulps down evil

The LORD is a God of truth (Deut 32:4). He demands honesty and truthfulness in all your dealings. You must tell the whole truth and nothing but the truth at all times, but especially when you speak about others. This is a basic but important rule of wisdom.

Those who deceive or lie as witnesses show that they hate God, despise justice, and have a greedy appetite for sin. They will have their reward, for both God and men despise such wicked fools (Pr 19:29; 22:10; 24:9; Is 29:20-21). Most or all sins can be forgiven more easily than lying or bearing false witness. Never misrepresent another person at all!

When you are asked about another person, you make a choice that reveals your character. You either tell the careful truth about the situation, or you compromise the truth in order to protect yourself or a friend, secure an advantage, or exact revenge. If you answer falsely to those in authority or in need of information, you reveal yourself as a scorner of judgment – thinking it a thing of little worth, without respect or regard for it. God forbid.

The devil is a liar and the father of lying (Gen 3:4; John 8:44). When you corrupt or misrepresent matters about another person, you are an ungodly witness obeying the devil (Eph 2:1-3; Acts 5:3). You must think justice and righteousness are jokes, for you profanely treat them as nothing by your actions. But the LORD of truth declared in the Ten Commandments, “Thou shalt not bear false witness” (Ex 20:16; Deut 5:20).

Perjury is no small matter to the God of heaven and earth. He hates false witnesses (Pr 6:19). He condemned them often in the Bible (Pr 10:18; 25:18; Ex 23:1,7; Lev 19:11,16). False witnesses will pay dearly, both here and hereafter (Pr 19:5,9; 21:28; Rev 21:8,27).

God’s fury against bad speech includes backbiting, slandering, talebearing, and whispering – crimes inoffensively called gossip, but now nearly forgotten. How are these sins related to lying? They use the tongue to destroy others (Lev 19:16; Ps 15:1-3).

What happened to false witnesses under God’s civil laws? The punishment at stake was executed on the perjurer. If it was a capital trial for murder, a false witness would be executed (Deut 19:16-21). If an eyeball was at stake, a perjurer had his eye gouged out. Perfect! Wise men quickly perceive that witnesses in God’s legal system would learn to tell the whole truth. In fact, honesty in court and legal dealings would rise dramatically.

Those who lie about others have no regard for equity, fairness, justice, or righteousness, so God labels them scorners – a despicable type of perverse fool that is beyond help. He describes their mouths, which easily and quickly pour out wicked insinuations and false reports, as devouring iniquity. They are flagrant and greedy sinners without consciences, who will lie without remorse or worry whenever convenient, for gain or revenge.

Reader, do you despise false witnesses? Do you always tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you God? Here is the proof: what do you do when you hear someone misrepresent another person? Do you get visibly angry, warn them of their wickedness, and cut them off (Pr 25:23; Ps 101:5; I Thess 5:14)? If you do not, you are an accomplice in their sin, for listening to their lies or slander is a sin itself (Pr 17:4).

Praise God for the Faithful and True Witness at the right hand of God (Rev 3:14; 19:11). He will soon declare the true facts about your life, remembering every good and bad thing you have done (Pr 15:3; Eccl 12:14; Matt 25:31-46; II Cor 5:10). But unless your name is in the Book of Life, you will be cast into the lake of fire, which is the second death (Rev 20:11-15). Is your name there? Beg Him for mercy (Luke 18:14; John 5:24).


Under Gods Command

Proverbs 14:3 A fool’s talk brings a rod to his back, but the lips of the wise protect them.

Is your speech mostly arrogant or gracious? All speech falls somewhere between these two extremes. Where does your speech fall? Does your speech tend toward being gracious and kind at all times? Or does it tend toward being arrogant and hurtful at times?

Here is one of the problems – you are not a good judge of your speech. Only others can accurately tell whether you are haughty or kind in your words. All men want to justify the way they speak, but it is the hearers that feel either irritated or blessed by your words.

There are consequences to pay for your speech. Harsh and proud speech brings punishment and trouble from God and men; discreet and gracious speech brings blessing and safety from God and men. Can you rule your mouth to protect yourself from trouble?

How you use your tongue, one of the most difficult things to rule, dictates how you are treated in life. Both death and life are in the power of the tongue, and if you indulge yourself in talking, you will realize one or the other result (Pr 18:21). Solomon warned often about the consequences of speech (Pr 10:20,31; 15:2; 21:23; 26:28; Eccl 10:12-14).

What is this rod of pride in the mouths of fools? It is a metaphor describing how the proud speech of a fool hurts others and himself. His tongue becomes a weapon for pain (Job 5:21; Jas 3:9-12). A fool cannot control his proud speech, and it causes others and him grief wherever he goes (Pr 12:18; 13:10; 14:16; 18:6-7,21; 21:24; 28:25; 29:20).

But a wise man is preserved and honored by his tongue. He uses speech for the good of others, and they love him for it (Pr 15:4,23; 24:26; 25:11-12). His gracious and kind words win the blessing and favor of others (Pr 11:16; 22:11; 31:26). He preserves his soul from much grief by wisely dealing with those around him (Pr 6:1-5; 12:13; 15:1; 18:7).

When a fool talks proudly with his mouth, the pride in his words causes others to dislike and resent him. He loses friends and relationships, but in his ignorance does not know why. When a wise man graciously and humbly denigrates himself to always advance others, they respond with affection and appreciation. He gains in friends and honor.

Do you know where your speech falls between arrogance and grace? Since your heart is deceitful above all things, you are a poor judge (Jer 17:9; Ps 19:12). Since men are prone to excuse their own faults, you must accept the judgment of others. Do others think you biting, harsh, proud, or sarcastic? Or do others think you gentle, kind, edifying, or meek? You must crush even the smell of pride in your heart to have acceptable speech (Pr 16:5).

The word of God is plain here. Corrupt speech is to be replaced with gracious and edifying speech (Eph 4:29). Bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, evil speaking, and malice are to be replaced with kindness, tenderheartedness, and forgiveness (Eph 4:31-32). Your speech is to always be gracious, allowing room for only a little salty seasoning (Col 4:6).

The Lord Jesus Christ spoke with the purest grace ever (Ps 45:2; Luke 4:22). Even officers sent by the Jews to apprehend Him could not believe His excellent speech (John 7:45-46). The wisdom from heaven is distinctly different from the wisdom of hell, and both kinds are evidenced in the heart attitude and speech of men (Jas 3:14-18). Let the wisdom of this proverb dramatically turn your speech today from pride to graciousness.


Under Gods Command

Romans 13:10 Love does no harm to its neighbor. Therefor love is the fulfillment of the law.

Christians must obey the law of love, which supersedes both religious and civil laws. How easy it is to excuse our indifference to others merely because we have no legal obligation to help them, and even to justify harming them if our actions are technically legal!

Lets Bring it home: But Jesus does not leave loopholes in the law of love. Whenever love demands it, we are to go beyond human legal requirements and imitate the God of Love.


Under Gods Command
Proverbs 23:22 Listen to your father, who gave you life, and do not despise your mother when she is old.

Honor your parents. Your life depends on it. Parents will weaken with age, but you still should honor them. God ordained parents, and He handpicked yours. He will generously reward those who honor parents (Eph 6:2-3), but He will destroy rebels (Pr 20:20; 30:17).

God planned for children to arrive in life helpless, so they do. He also planned they would grow to successful maturity under the affectionate care, instruction, and rule of parents. But this wise family relationship also depends on children honoring their parents.

God created the offices of father and mother, but He also chose the very persons who are your father and mother! When the great God brought you into existence, He did not ask you or your parents. He planned and executed a blind date for the three of you based on His perfect knowledge of all circumstances and possible outcomes of the arrangement. Humble yourself before your God-chosen parents. Obey them. Honor them. Love them.

The law of God and the rule of nature are to reverence fathers (Ex 20:12; Lev 19:3; Mal 1:6; Eph 6:1-3; Heb 12:9). The LORD commanded death for offenders, even for speaking lightly or showing facial disrespect (Deut 27:16; Pr 30:17). Proper growth and maturity to face life, the orderliness of society, and the peace of homes depend on honor to fathers. It is dangerous times when this basic standard is compromised (Isaiah 3:5; II Tim 3:1-2).

Daily life with a father for 20-30 years exposes you to his faults and weaknesses, which can lead to familiarity. But the God of heaven has a warning for you – I chose that man who brought you into existence, and I expect you to listen to him and obey him as you would Me! Do not let familiarity dull his honor, because I chose him as a god for your life. If you despise him, you despise Me! And I will not accept such scornful rebellion!

The thing you should be most content about is your father. God chose him. God chose his ability, education, wealth, intelligence, looks, personality, opportunities, successes, and failures for His own glory and your perfection. No other father would have worked as well for you! The eternal counsel of heaven connected you two, and any discontentment or disrespect from you is treason against the design of a benevolent and sovereign God.

Hearken to your father. Listen to him, and obey his advice. He knows more about life than you can grasp, even if it were explained to you. He knows you better than you know yourself. He cares about you and your future more than you do. Your short-term view of things is foolish and vain. His affection for you, his desire for your success, his sense of responsibility, and his experience and knowledge come together to form his advice. Save yourself a great deal of pain in life and judgment from God – hearken unto your father.

Isaac submitted to his father tying him on an altar as a sacrifice (Gen 22:9)! Jacob obeyed his father to travel far away and pick a wife from cousins (Gen 28:1-5). Joseph honored his father and sought his blessing on his children (Gen 48:8-14). Moses, ruler in Israel, reverenced his father-in-law, a Midianite (Ex 18:7-12). And the Rechabites carefully obeyed a distant grandfather, though he had lived 300 years earlier (Jer 35:6-10)!

With age your father will lose his strength and wisdom, but he is still the one God chose to beget you. His declining abilities are no grounds for you to disrespect him. He might not have the power any longer to enforce his rule, but by this time you should be more conscious of his authority and right over you than ever before. Respect him in old age out of principle and thankfulness, rather than out of childish fear or habit or necessity.

Blind and hardened fools disobey their fathers, and the sin is compared to the perverse depravity of sodomy (Rom 1:30). Such a child is a terrible calamity to parents (Pr 17:25; 19:26). The perilous times of the last days have arrived, when even Christians allow children to disobey and dishonor their parents (II Tim 3:1-2). Their permissive approach to life and religion, choosing fables instead of doctrine, will destroy them (II Tim 4:3-4).

Your mother was introduced to you in the prime of her life. She was attractive, energetic, and intelligent. It was bearing and bringing you up that dulled those traits. Her body gave you every nutrient for growth for nine months before you were born, and for nine months or more after you were born. A lifeline tied you to her before you were born, and you cried for her after being born, as if you still needed and wanted that lifeline.

She loved you and did more for you than ten wives could or would. She patiently adored, pampered, praised, and doted on you in ways a wife will not. She was a tireless servant in providing food, clothing, bedding, and countless other comforts for your existence, though you never gave her even a “thank you” for years! She suffered through your infatuation with boyfriends, who combined and squared would never do as much for you.

She was the weaker sex in her prime, in God’s opinion (I Pet 3:7). But as she gets older, taking care of you and then worrying about you, she will lose more strength and wit. She will fear things she once mocked. She will forget names, places, and how to do simple tasks. She spent herself caring for you, and now there is little left. What will you do? Ignore her in her weakened condition, or give her greater glory and honor and care?

If you hurt her in any way in her old age, the God of heaven will take retribution now and in the world to come (Pr 20:20; 30:17; Rev 21:8). If you do not fully take care of her in old age, then you have denied the religion of Jesus Christ and are worse than a pagan infidel, no matter what church you attend, or what Bible version you read (I Tim 5:4,8).

Ruth obeyed and tenderly served her mother-in-law Naomi in her old age (Ruth 2:17-23). Solomon, with regal authority and glory like no other, honored his mother with a seat at his right hand and promised to not reject her request (I Kgs 2:19-20)! And the Lord Jesus Christ, though greatly stressed with the torments of crucifixion and the reconciliation of His people, gave assignment to John for the tender care of His mother (John 19:26-27).

If you are a child, you have just read your duty. Let it be your great pleasure to attentively heed your father’s advice, whether in his presence or on the other side of his grave. What should you do this very day to honor your aging mother? See to it quickly! If your parents are far away, you can call, email, mail, or visit. If they are inaccessible, what about your in-laws? If you have honored your parents, what about any grandparents?

If you are a parent, and your children show you little or none of this honor or care, humble yourself before the God of heaven and confess your sinful indulgence, careless inconsistency, reversal of roles, overbearing criticism, or permissive environment that cost you the esteemed position of beloved parents (Pr 22:6; 31:28). The merciful God of heaven is able to help you recover lost years, if you repent in humility (Joel 2:12-27).

If you are a Christian, you have another Father far greater than your earthly father, Almighty God Himself. He has done more for you than all natural fathers combined. You owe Him all the reverence and obedience you can possibly muster. You call on Him frequently, every time you need or want help, and He has never failed you a single time.

The sober words of truth from Peter to you about Him are these: “And if ye call on the Father, who without respect of persons judgeth according to every man’s work, pass the time of your sojourning here in fear” (I Pet 1:17). You should fearfully hearken to God your Father and never despise Him even far more than your earthly father and mother.


Under Gods Command

Proverbs 7:21With persuasive words she led him astray; she seduced him with her smooth talk.

Women can overpower men – by words! Men crave hearing a woman’s praise, affection, and loyalty. A whore’s flattery is very dangerous. Wicked women use this power to entice men to sin; virtuous women use it to please, protect, and build up their husbands.

Solomon’s long parable about an adulteress seducing a young fool includes the power of her words tempting him to sin with her. Her speech is so powerful, she “caused him to yield” and “forced him” into sexual sin. He is fully guilty for sinning with her, but the wisdom of this proverb is to rightly grasp the danger and power of her flirting words.

In this perverse world, no matter how a woman dresses or acts, it is always the man’s fault for sexual problems. Sexual harassment occurs in only one direction for such weak minds and today’s courts. But the LORD and Solomon warned about women seducing and forcing men, and they were right. Women have power (Pr 6:24-25; 7:26; Eccl 7:26).

Whorish women create more sexual temptation for men than lewd men do for women (Pr 23:27-28). Only the basest of women are attracted to crude, forward, and lascivious men. Women are naturally protected by stronger inhibitions, need for commitment, families, laws, and social decorum. But what can protect men from a bold seductress? Proverbs!

Flattery is excessive praise used to seduce someone against his will. It is presenting a matter very favorably in order to make it more pleasant and to beguile the listener. Men love the praise of a woman, for winning the adoration, favor, and devotion of a woman is an instinctive drive placed in their hearts and loins by God. Evil women manipulate this desire in men to prey on them in their various schemes of seduction for selfish purposes.

Whatever inhibitions against sexual sin a man has – by religion, parental training, or noble character – he will often lose them due to the enticing and flattering speech of a desirable woman. The adoration of a woman is an elixir that only a few exceptional men can resist, and then only by the grace of God. Joseph may have resisted Potiphar’s wife, but he was an exception to the general rule of Scripture and human experience.

King Solomon often warned his son about the smooth and silky words of a whorish seductress (Pr 2:16; 5:3; 6:24; 7:5; 22:14). Wise men will take sober heed and avoid such women, before their lying words steal their souls and virtue. But here he has just described in detail the verbal approach of an adulteress enticing a naïve victim (Pr 7:13-20). His summary in this proverb states the case well. She forced the young man to yield!

Solomon described the whore as using an embrace, a kiss, and a bold, uninhibited face before her words (Pr 7:13). Then he gave a lengthy description of her much fair speech:

1. I am really a good girl: I am no whore: sleeping with me will not be sin (7:14).
2. I have made many preparations and have lots of things for a great time (7:14).
3. My motives are very noble in wanting to share a great time with you (7:15).
4. I have waited a long time and dreamed often of finding a man like you (7:15).
5. I am so glad I found you, because I do not want to be with anyone else (7:15).
6. It is so wonderful to be alone with you and feel the passion between us (7:15).
7. I have wanted to meet you for a long time; I have made preparations (7:16).
8. I have arranged things for the ultimate, perfect lovemaking between us (7:16).
9. I know special things you will love, that other boring women overlook (7:17).
10. I care about you more than any other woman, so I go to greater efforts (7:17).
11. We surely have a love between us that no one else has ever had before (7:18).
12. Let us fully experience the depths of this unique, special love we have (7:18).
13. No woman has ever felt as strongly about any man as I feel for you (7:18).
14. Our lovemaking will exceed all the lovemaking in the world’s history (7:18).
15. The comfort and pleasure we can find in each other will be wonderful (7:18).
16. Our love and pleasure will last all night – and all our lives – forever (7:18).
17. Don’t worry about any risk, for my old man is on a long business trip (7:19).
18. He loves business more than me: I need your love and body so much (7:19).
19. There is no risk of getting caught; I have figured everything out for us (7:20).
20. He has money, which he loves; we have a love his money cannot buy (7:20).

Young man, how strong was Samson? Was he stronger than any man? Indeed! He was stronger than you. But whores have slain many strong men (Pr 7:26). Delilah used words to destroy him, even though he knew she wanted to destroy him. Why could he not resist her? Because flattering words from a beautiful woman are too much for most men! Read about his weakness and helplessness before her manipulating flattery (Judges 16:4-21).

Young man, how wise was Solomon? Was he wiser than any man? Indeed! He was wiser than you. But whores have cast down and wounded many great men (Pr 7:26). Exotic women caused even Solomon to sin, against the good advice of his own proverbs (I Kgs 11:1-8; Neh 13:26). Among many nations there was no king like him, and God loved Him, but these women corrupted his great character by power over him (Eccl 7:26).

In avoiding the dangerous flattery of women, you must also guard against seducing words in notes, cards, emails, text messages, tweets, phone messages, letters, forums, or any other forms of communication. It does not matter how a woman’s words arrive in a man’s mind, they are powerful. She can communicate with you more easily today than ever before, and wisdom demands caution in all these new dangers of the 21st century.

Christian woman, guard your speech to men other than your father or husband. Be sober. Hate flirting or flattery. While praise is a wonderful thing, it is too powerful for you to give to men other than on rare occasions and with great discretion. But you should learn to use kind words and feminine adoration of your father and husband, for it can build a man’s soul and character to be the strong and noble creature God intended him to be.

Christian wife, why let the world’s women tempt your husband by your silence or prudery at home? A virtuous wife is skilful in all the arts of lovemaking (Pr 5:19; I Cor 7:1-5; Heb 13:4), including words that comfort, intrigue, arouse, and invite her husband. If you have not been taught such things, you need to read King Solomon’s Song! The book of Proverbs has lessons of wisdom, but his song describes two hot married lovers!

The subtle and damning nature of flattery is seen also in false religion, where good words and fair speeches deceive the hearts of simple hearers to sell false doctrine (Rom 16:17-18; II Cor 2:17; 11:3-4,13-15; Col 2:4; II Pet 2:3,18). What is the protection? Look for the plain and simple churches of Jesus Christ with straightforward preaching of the Bible. Look for ministers who provide all things direct and honest (II Cor 4:2). Instead of pulpit manner, look for pulpit content. Instead of presentation, look for doctrine and instruction.


Under Gods Command
Proverbs 16:32 Better a patient man than a warrior, a man who controls his temper than one who takes a city.

Here is a lesson in personal greatness. How strong are you? What have you achieved? The best test of character is controlling your emotions, especially anger. The biggest achievement you can have is to limit your passions to only those actions that are good.

Every real man wants to be a mighty man of valor. Every real woman wants to be a noble woman worthy of such a man. The Bible records many exploits of mighty men and noble women. But this proverb teaches a greater measure of individual glory – the ability to deny anger and to control your spirit. The man who can resist getting angry or losing control of his spirit is more honorable than men with great military accomplishments.

Consider some mighty men of valor. Gideon defeated a huge army of Midianites with only 300 men, and Jephthah destroyed 20 cities of the Ammonites with a small army. Samson killed 1000 Philistines with the jawbone of an ass, and Shamgar killed 600 with an ox goad. Joab took the fortress of Jebus, which became Jerusalem. Adino killed 800 at one time with his spear, and Abishai did the same to 300. Caleb begged for a mountain in Canaan where the dreaded giants lived, and he destroyed them and took their cities.

But you can be greater than these men! You do so by being cautious and slow in getting angry and by controlling and ruling your spirit. It takes more courage, discipline, strength, and wisdom to resist passionate emotions like anger than it does to take a city.

Can you control the violent feelings of anger and keep your spirit calm and wise? Will you? This is how a born fool can be wise and glorious (Pr 14:29; Ec 7:9; Jas 1:19-20). If you defer anger and pass over faults and offences of others, you are glorious (Pr 19:11).

But your spirit screams for a strong response! It hates to be restrained. It must exert itself, in full fury, now! Harsh words burn in your tongue and must be spoken. You tell others you cannot help yourself. You may blame God for giving you a spirit too strong to rule.

The world lies that anger is a trait of mighty men, a right of free men, and a tool of strong leaders. They say venting rage brings relief, but this is only to a depraved soul. If a conscience remains, you are soon grieved at the violence that spewed out of your mouth.

Rather than ruling their spirit, most men are ruled by their spirits. Instead of conquering anger, they become captives of their passions. Instead of thinking before speaking, they speak without thinking by their feelings only, which is highly dangerous and foolhardy.

The battle facing you exceeds any military expedition. A city can be taken with a single siege, but you will fight the passion of anger for the rest of your life. Wars are fought by the efforts of many, but you must fight alone. The vigilance, effort, and patience needed to rule anger causes most men to forfeit the battle and become slaves to their own folly.

The world is filled with illustrations of those who could not rule their spirits. You have them in your own family. You likely have several in your own closet. Alexander the Great conquered the known world, but he could not defeat the brutish beast within that ruined him at home and among his friends. Peter the Great is reported to have said, “I can govern my people, but how can I govern myself?” If you can defeat this monster, you will have a victory over a foe that has destroyed conquerors. You will be a mighty man!

Anger marks a loser. Guaranteed! Anger blinds your mind to misread situations, causes you to say and do stupid things, never accomplishes anything good, and drives away your family and friends (Pr 14:17; 15:18; 21:24; 22:24-25; 29:22). If you get angry and do not rule your spirit, you cannot be compared to a military hero; you must be compared to a city with its walls broken down and vulnerable to all kinds of evil (Pr 25:28; Jas 3:14-16).

Not all anger is sin. Do not let misguided Christians tell you otherwise. Jesus condemned unjustified anger (Matt 5:22), and Paul said to be angry and sin not (Eph 4:26). Anger is good, when it is directed against sin for the glory of God. But anger in a traffic jam, or over spilt milk, or about another’s harsh words against you, or because you were slighted, or in retaliation for a wrong, or because things did not turn out as expected, is wrong!

There are more passions than just anger, and you must also rule them. Moodiness is the mark of an immature child, not a mighty man of valor. Such a person needs a beating, not comforting. Murmuring is the complaining of a wicked heart moving a devilish tongue, which ought not to be. Critical or harsh speech is the poison that spews from a selfish heart. Great men have pure hearts that result in gracious speech (Pr 22:11; Col 4:6).

There are other passions that need to be ruled. Fear is very debilitating, but it has no place in your life, for God has not given you such a spirit (II Tim 1:7), and fearing others will trap you into foolish choices or sin (Pr 29:25). Covetousness, the desire of what others have or what you do not have, is compared to idolatry (Eph 5:5). Contentment, a key to true happiness and a measure of great gain, is your choice (I Tim 6:6; Heb 13:5-6).

What can you do to be great in the sight of God and men? Slow down! Do not ever say or do anything by impulse. Hear things out before you speak. Choose to study every matter before giving your opinion. Wait before reacting, when you hear or experience any negative event. Cut your words in half. Always be gracious in your speech, especially with your family. Let the words of this proverb motivate you to be a mighty man of valor.

But you cannot achieve this victory without help, and that help is in the Lord, His word, and His saints. Paul learned that he could do all things through Christ, Who strengthened him (Phil 4:13). The Holy Spirit, allowed to bear fruit by a holy and submissive life, can fill you with love, joy, peace, longsuffering, and so forth (Gal 5:22-23). The Bible can convert your soul by showing the folly of anger and the glory of peace. And brothers and sisters in Christ, when they are doing their duty, can encourage and warn you as needed.

Will the real mighty men of valor please stand up! Will the real noble women of the earth please stand up! You will not have to wait long to face your foe. The Lord Himself will arrange circumstances to test the rule of your spirit. Do not be surprised by anything that happens. Purpose now to be slow and cautious in responding and to rule that unruly fury in your belly and tongue. May the grace of Jesus Christ give you complete victory!


Under Gods Command

Proverbs 11:2 When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with humility comes wisdom.

Pride distorts decision-making ability. An arrogant, conceited, or haughty person will make costly mistakes, but a humble and modest man will clearly see right and wrong, truth and error, wisdom and folly. Your greatness depends on getting rid of all pride.

God inspired King Solomon to be your personal counselor. The wisest king that ever lived wrote down important advice for your success and prosperity. Pride will cause you to make foolish choices that will shame you; humility will lead you to make wise choices.

The worst thing you can have is pride. It will cost you more than any other character fault. Conceit will deceive you into folly, which will quickly and surely shame you. But humility leads to wisdom, which protects men from foolish mistakes and resulting shame.

Do you grasp the importance of this lesson? You will never hear or read a more important warning for your life. Pride will destroy you, but it will destroy you disgracefully and shamefully before all men. Humility will lift you up before both God and good men.

A fool is a horrible thing, as Solomon often taught. But there is a person worse than a fool – a proud fool! He wrote, “Seest thou a man wise in his own conceit? there is more hope of a fool than of him” (Pr 26:12). There is little hope for a fool – he is a loser; but there is no hope for a proud fool. His arrogance will refuse any instruction or correction.

Pride blinds men. They will not accept wisdom to avoid trouble and shame. They resent being taught or corrected by others. They are overconfident. They arrogantly rush on in their high opinion of their thoughts and ideas. Pride brings folly, which brings shame.

Hate pride and arrogance! Listen to your counselor. He wrote, “The fear of the LORD is to hate evil: pride, and arrogancy, and the evil way, and the froward mouth, do I hate” (Pr 8:13). Fearing God, the key to God’s blessing, requires you to hate pride and arrogance!

Pride is a heinous evil. It began with the devil. It caused Satan’s downfall. Lucifer was not content as God’s anointed cherub; he wanted to be like the most High God (Ezek 28:14; Is 14:14). God threw him out of heaven to his everlasting shame (Jn 12:31; Rev 12:9,12). The smoke of his torment will be heaven’s incense (Matt 25:41; Rev 14:11).

Do you hate pride and arrogance? Pride is the devil’s sin. Pride ruined the glorious life of the universe’s highest creature. Pride caused his everlasting shame and torment. Pride is the worst thing you can have in your life. It will cost you more than any other sin.

Due to pride, Pharaoh, the greatest king of that time, destroyed himself, his family, his nation, and his army (Ex 5:2). Men have laughed at his destruction and shame for the last 3500 years (Ex 15:1-21; I Sam 4:8; 6:6; Neh 9:10; Ps 136:9,15; Rom 9:17). Even children rejoice and laugh at the frogs in Pharaoh’s bed and bread for his pride (Ex 8:3)!

Due to pride, the Philistines fought against Israel, in spite of remembering what God had done to Egypt 500 years earlier (I Sam 4:7-9). After capturing the Ark of God, they put it before their idol Dagon, which fell down and worshipped it (I Sam 5:1-5). God then gave the whole nation an epidemic of hemorrhoids, and the only way they could find relief was to return the Ark with five golden hemorrhoids as a peace offering (I Sam 6:1-5)!

Consider their shame! The whole nation scratched their secret parts (I Sam 5:9), and there was no Preparation H. Their only relief was to mold five golden hemorrhoids. God laughed at their shame! He inspired Psalm 78:66 for this event, which rejoices, “And he smote his enemies in the hinder parts: he put them to a perpetual reproach.” Indeed! They were put to perpetual shame for pride. What a peace offering! Who modeled for them!

Due to pride, Nebuchadnezzar, the greatest and most glorious king of all time, spent seven years crawling around a field on his hands and knees. He ate grass like an ox; his hairs grew out like eagle feathers; and his nails grew out like bird claws (Dan 4:33). And he wrote the whole story down and sent it to his entire empire in their languages (Dan 4:1-3)! What trouble! What shame! And it was all because of pride (Dan 4:30-31)!

Due to pride, Herod Agrippa I, the King of Judea from 37-44 AD, who killed the apostle James and tried to kill the apostle Peter, was struck by the angel of God and eaten of worms, for proudly receiving excessive praise from the citizens of Tyre and Sidon (Acts 12:1-4,20-23). Josephus confirms his death in his history (Antiquities; Book 19; 8:2).

Do not forget the Tower of Babel, Miriam, Korah, Balaam, Uzziah, Haman, Absalom, and Belshazzar. These are other examples of shameful consequences for pride. But now, celebrating the shame of others, which is truly an act of holy worship to God, is over. It is your turn. Where is pride in your life? Look closely. Look carefully. Do you ever feel pride puffing you up? Does it cause you to bristle or burn with envy at success of others?

What is pride? It is a high or conceited opinion of your own qualities, accomplishments, or assets, which leads to feelings and an attitude of superiority over and contempt for others; it is inordinate self-esteem. What is conceit? It is an overweening opinion of yourself, overestimation of your own qualities, and personal vanity or pride.

Pride thinks you are important. Pride enjoys conversations and events about you. Pride believes your thoughts and opinions are right. Pride resents correction and instruction. Pride envies the advantages, abilities, or honors of others. Pride ignores asking others for advice. Pride looks down on others. Read this description again, dear reader.

God is jealous. His name is Jealous (Ex 34:14). He is able, and He will, abase those who walk in pride (Dan 4:37; Job 40:11-12). He sees and knows the very thoughts and intents of your heart (Heb 4:12). You must examine yourself closely, find the seeds of pride in your life, and root them out quickly and completely. He will help you, if you will ask.

In God’s sight, you are nothing, and less than nothing (Ps 39:5; 62:9; 113:6; Is 40:17). You are a worm before Him (Job 25:6). You are a mere creature whose breath is in your nostrils (Is 2:22). Therefore, He hates the proud, and He will crush them like a moth and melt them like wax (Pr 6:16-17; Ps 39:11; 68:2). Wisdom learns to love this truth.

Pride is a temptation for every man, and one of Satan’s favorite devices (I Jn 2:16). He tempted Eve to be like God, and he tempted Jesus Christ with the kingdoms of the world. Your depraved heart is filled with it by nature. You are already a proud fool, if you think you do not have a problem or temptation with it. Only those who know they are proud are learning humility. To think you have beaten pride is to prove your arrogant conceit!

Today pride is exalted and promoted by calling it self-esteem or self-confidence, and then it is taught as the cure for many of man’s problems. Books are sold about looking out for number one, and songs are sung about self-love as the greatest love of all. Social media is considered nearly necessary for life, though it is little more than narcissistic conceit.

You must start at home. You must root pride out of your own soul, and then you must root it out of your family. Parents must make it the highest priority to teach humility and eliminate visible pride from their children. Pastors must root it out of their churches.

Ministers cannot have pride or self-will (I Tim 3:6; Tit 1:7), for it will cause them to run amok in the work of God. They cannot be self-promoters. Teachers and rulers must first be humble enough to examine themselves critically and to learn from others, before they should be put in a position to teach and examine others (I Tim 4:16; II Tim 2:15).

Pride causes folly, which brings shame. It blinds men, because they presume they are always right (Pr 12:15; 14:16; 26:12; 28:26). So they reject and resent counsel and correction that could help them (Pr 21:24; 22:3). They disrespect those in authority. They make hasty decisions, for they cannot possibly be wrong (Pr 14:29; 19:2; 28:22; 29:20).

Pride causes strife, for proud men will fight to defend their ideas or position (Pr 13:10; 21:24; 28:25). They cannot stoop to serve others, unless it serves them best. And they will not admit mistakes to God or men. Such a course will lead a man to foolish decisions and stubborn rebellion and their horrible consequences – destruction and shame!

Lowliness is wisdom. The humble man does not trust his knowledge or motives, trembles before God’s word, appreciates and esteems the advice of others, takes correction cheerfully, quickly confesses mistakes, and alters his life accordingly. He will be blessed.

Humility is the sure road to wisdom, which saves a man from trouble and shame, but only the lowly ever find it. The proud are blinded from true wisdom by their conceit, and the jealous God of heaven will keep them blinded, so He can bless His humble and modest children with wisdom (Matt 11:25-27). Can you see the importance of getting down?

God will never bless a man with a proud spirit (Pr 16:5). He draws near to the man with a humble spirit (Is 57:15; 66:2; I Pet 5:5-6). If you choose pride, God will resist you and humble you painfully (Pr 16:18; 18:12). If you choose humility cheerfully, God will raise you up gloriously (Luke 14:11). It is far better to be a poor humble man than to be a rich proud man, for God will soon make a great reversal of fortune (Pr 16:19). Look for it!

Jesus Christ showed the greatest humility and wisdom, when He came from heaven’s glory to live in poverty and die in obscurity and pain (Phil 2:5-8). He despised the shame of His humility (Heb 12:2). But God has now highly exalted Him far above all principalities and powers, yea, even far above the devil and all his angels (Phil 2:9-11; Eph 1:20-23). There is no more humility in the Blessed and Only Potentate, for He is worthy of all your praise and adoration. Let Him be your glory and worship, not yourself.