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Pride and Rebellion

While an earthly man is addressed in Isaiah 14:12-17 and Ezekiel 28:11-19 the descriptions that are given go beyond what could be described of a human being. Therefore, we see these passages as also describing Lucifer. Later to be known as Satan, the devil and the deceiver among other names.

In Ezekiel 28:11-19 we see the birth of pride. Pride is the first sin we see. This sin came into existence when Lucifer saw his own beauty. His heart was corrupted. Even though he was a perfect creation, in a perfect place with a perfect position he fell from perfection because of pride.

Isaiah 14:12-17 shows us the rebellion that followed pride. It's interesting that God shows us exactly what Lucifer was thinking in his heart before he was removed from his perfect position as the anointed cherub that covered. We see the "five I will's" of Lucifer. These "five I will's" culminated with Lucifer intending to be like the Most High God.

Woven into this sin of pride and rebellion are the sins of jealousy, self-promotion and discontentment.

Now, my mind wonders how all this could take place in the heart of perfect creation in a perfect place with a perfect position in heaven. The question that is more important than how could this happen in the heart of Lucifer is how often pride has found its way into my heart?

Note these verses on pride in the book of Proverbs:

~ Prov 6:17 one of the 7 things the Lord hates is a proud look

~ Prov 11:2 when pride comes, then comes shame, but with the lowly is wisdom

~ Prov 13:10 only by pride comes contention: but with the well advised is wisdom

~ Prov 15:25 The Lord will destroy the house of the proud

~ Prov 16:18 pride goes before destruction and a haughty spirit before a fall

~ Prov 16:19 Better it is to be of a humble spirit with the lowly, than to divide the spoil with the proud

~ Prov 21:4 A high look, and a proud heart, and the plowing of the wicked is sin

~ Prov 28:25 he that is of proud heart stirs up strife: but he that puts his trust in the Lord shall be made fat

~ Prov 29:23 a man’s pride shall bring him low: but the honor shall uphold them the humble in spirit

These verses on pride describe the Lord's outlook on pride and its effects. These verses should serve as a warning to me to guard my heart against this dangerous and deceptive sin.

Pride is mother of all sins, for this was the sin that was found in Lucifer. When Paul was telling Timothy the qualifications of an elder in 1 Timothy 3 one the qualifications was that the elder shouldn't be a novice. Paul's reason is that the man could become proud because of his position and power and fall into the condemnation of the devil. Paul warns of this sin of pride. Paul addresses Satan’s sin that caused his condemnation as pride.

Humility is God's answer to pride. James and Peter both give us a similar thought on humility and pride.

  • James 4:6 God resists the proud but gives grace to the humble.

  • 1 Peter 5:5,6 Be clothed with humility towards one another because God resists the proud but gives grace to the humble. Humble yourselves under the mighty had of God, that He may exalt you in due time.

We clothe ourselves with humility says Peter. James also said in James 1:21 to receive the implanted word with meekness. Meekness is the correct soil the heart needs to hear the word of God.

God's word is God's method of correcting us. When we hear the word of God it needs to land in our heart. When the word comes and corrects us may we humbly accept its evaluation and work in our lives (Hebrews 4:12). May we humbly accept its evaluation so we don’t fall into jealousy, self-promotion and discontentment.

Pride will resist God’s work in our lives. Pride will not be content with where God has called me. Pride will be jealous of what I don’t have. Pride will cause me to promote myself when no one else will. Pride will not be content with God’s provision for my life but will seek provisions outside His will.

Is it any wonder that Satan who succumbed to pride, jealousy, self-promotion and discontentment would tempt Jesus with similar tests in Matthew 4:1-11? Jesus responded with the word of God to Satan. Jesus utilized passages from Deuteronomy to resist the devil.

I want to clothe myself with humility and receive the word of God with meekness so I can be correctable when the bible challenges pride in my life. So often in the Old Testament God’s prophets spoke the word and it landed on hard hearts that weren’t correctable. The result was that judgement followed. God always resists pride.

If we humble ourselves God will give us grace and exalt us (1 Peter 5:6). Be on guard for pride lest we fall into the condemnation of the devil and rebel against God as Lucifer did. Instead of being caught up in our own beauty as Lucifer let’s be caught up in the beauty of God. The beauty of God is what Isaiah saw in Isaiah chapter six and it humbled him. He was then cleansed and sent by God. But he wouldn’t have been cleansed and sent if he hadn’t humbled himself and looked away from himself to see God’s holiness and beauty.

Let’s humble ourselves by God’s grace.

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