The word pride means a sense of one's own dignity or worth. Another definition is to be proud of oneself, as far as an accomplishment or an achievement. A definition of the word prideful is being overly convinced of one's own superiority and importance. The meaning of haughty is snobbishly, scornfully arrogant, disdainfully proud. The meaning of the word haughtiness is being obviously proud.
We are not to glory in ourselves but only in the cross.
When pride comes, then comes shame; But with the humble is wisdom. Proverbs 11:2
But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come: For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having a form of godliness but denying its power. And from such people turn away! 2 Timothy 3: 1-5
But God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world is crucified unto me, and I unto the world Galatians 6:14.
We are not saying that you should not take pride in your work. We need to be careful lest we are so proud of what we are doing for the Lord's sake, that we glory in our ability to do so. The glory shifts from being given to the Lord to our glorification. We might not initially have begun the works to gain glory to our name, but we might have fallen into the trap of feeling as if we deserve the glory. How cautious we should be in whatever we do . When doing anything for any good cause we should do it humbly, hoping to help others, knowing that God has given us the expertise to perform such a task. It is easy to hope to attain importance for all we might have done, but we should always try to see the deeper picture - that of spreading the precious word of our Lord. How we must have a humble attitude!
Nor did we seek glory from men, either from you or from others, when we might have made demands as apostles of Christ.
I Thessalonians 2:6
We should be humble when we are thanked by parents and others. Our response should be one of thanks,and our reply should be, "I am glad that I am able to work and help in any way."
Our dear Lord gave us this ability to perform these works and we can see how much He has done for us. Should He not get the glory? YES!!! Our Magnificent Lord should get the glory! In an instance like this, we need to step aside as to receiving any glorification for our efforts. Yes, there is work involved - the research and study used in the preparation, and of course - time. There is nothing wrong in taking pride in our accomplishments. It becomes wrong when I feel as if I did it. Look at ME, ME, ME and what I have done. Our aim needs to be to teach others of the wonderful saving grace of our Lord.
And he continued there a year and six months, teaching the word of God among them. Acts 18:11
We must examine ourselves and find out our true motivation. We need to be on the lookout against displaying our abilities for personal gain. We should be careful not to construct an image, raise our egos, amplify our reputation, or do anything to draw attention to ourselves.
For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.
Ephesians 2: 8-10
Yet it shall not be so among you; but whoever desires to become great among you shall be your servant. And whoever of you desires to be first shall be slave of all. Mark 10:43-44
The apostle Paul sought no glory for himself, but gave all the glory to God. What a wonderful example to follow.
For we do not preach ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord, and ourselves your bondservants for Jesus' sake. II Corinthians 4:5
We look to Jesus Christ as our supreme example, how He rebuked any pride in any of His accomplishments. When we review His life, we see how He showed us by His example how to be meek and humble at all times.
Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross.
Jesus did not take pride in His physical appearance.
For He shall grow up before Him as a tender plant, And as a root out of dry ground. He has no form or comeliness; and when we see Him, there is no beauty that we should desire Him. Isaiah 53:2
He did not take pride in His ability .
I can of Myself do nothing. As I hear, I judge; and My judgment is righteous, because I do not seek My own will but the will of the Father who sent Me. John 5:30
We have such a wonderful and fantastic example He left us. Yes, He was tempted in all ways as we are, but He was not prideful. Whatever we do, assisting with the youth, volunteering at a camp, personal evangelism, or working at a church building on a 'work' day - we need not to be boastful. Always we should give God the glory that we were able to assist.
We ought to seek the approval of our Lord and not the acceptance of people.
Discussion and Study Questions:
1. Discuss how God gives us the ability to perform tasks.
2. Give an example of a time when Christ performed an amazing task but showed no pride?
3. Why should we take pride in our work?
4. Why is it wrong to be prideful?
Pride is a component of personality that we all must deal with, Christians, desiring to be well grounded in their faith, need to examine and control their pride, based on the teaching of God's Word. As in all other aspects of life, the Bible has a great deal to say about pride. The Old and New Testaments abound with examples of how men and women dealt with pride, what God thinks of it, what its source is, and how we ought to deal with it in our daily lives. Yet, the topic has seldom been dealt with in Christian literature or from the pulpit. Secular psychology, of course, has a good deal to say about it. How do humanistic values coincide with God's view of pride? Isn't a little pride OK if it is controlled? Is it the amount of pride in possessions, relationships, country, children, achievements, knowledge, good works, and appearance, and even about spiritual pride. These are just a few of the topics covered. This book is designed for mature Christians who desire to walk more closely with their Lord.
God clearly states that he is drawn to the humble. He's also clear that He opposes the proud. These two, humility and pride, cannot coexist. Where one is fostered, the other is defeated.
Which will you pursue? C.J. Mahaney paints a striking picture of the daily battle quietly raging within every Christian and asks whether you will passively accommodate the enemy of your soul, pride, or actively cultivate your best friend, humility. When you acknowledge the deception of pride and intentionally humble yourself, you become free to savor abundant mercies and unlikely graces. You will find a new life is yours - a life God richly favors. A God-glorifying life you don't want to miss.