A Prideful Heart


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Daniel 5:20, “When his heart was lifted up, and his spirit was hardened in pride, he was deposed from his kingly throne”
Daniel 4:37, “Those who walk in pride He is able to put down”

There are many examples of being prideful in the Bible. In Isaiah 14:12-15 we are told that Lucifer was full of himself, full of pride, and wanted to “ascend to heaven” and raise his throne above the stars (or angels) of God and wanted to “sit on the mount of assembly in the recesses of the north” meaning he wanted to sit on the throne of God but in place of God. Because of Lucifer, Satan’s prideful heart he was cast out of heaven.

In Proverbs 6:16-19, we are told that God hates seven things. Tellingly, the first is pride. When someone overvalues himself by undervaluing others, he inevitably reveals it with his proud look. Puffed up in self-conceit, he may also devise evil and sow discord. No wonder God hates proud looks. I’m mindful of King Nebuchadnezzar who boasted that he was the one who built the great Babylon Empire found in Daniel 4. However, after being warned by Danniel about his pride, the Babylonian king Nebuchadnezzar was struck with insanity. The Lord restored his mind, but only after he spent 7 long years in a field thinking he was a wild animal.

In today’s world there are many proud and powerful people who think they can disregard others’ displeasure, but they cannot disregard God’s opposition. Peter reminds us not to trust in ourselves but in the One who will exalt us “in due time” (1 Peter 5:6). My brethren, as we submit to Him, we avoid the risk that pride brings to our character and we become thankful, humble servants of God. Remember that no one can glorify self and Christ at the same time. Our achievements, success, or greatness are not rooted in ourselves. They are the product of God’s matchless grace, upon which we are eternally dependent.

Further thoughts:

When a Michigan man entered the hospital for rests, he never would have guessed what the doctors would find. A routine chest x-ray revealed that the man’s heart was on the wrong side of his chest. Because of a rare reversed-organ condition, his heart was not where it should be. We read of a different kind of heart problem found in Daniel 5 and one that is all to common today. This chapter reminds us that pride is a spiritual condition in which the heart is in the wrong place. Nebuchadnezzar and Belshazzar, two kings of Babylon, were told that they had misplaced hearts of arrogance and pride. As a result, God judged both of them. Nebuchadnezzar was made low until he recognized that the most High God ruled over all, and Belshazzar was slain.

My beloved, we need to examine ourselves often to see if our heart is in the right place. Do we depend on God daily? Do we acknowledge that all we have and are is by His mercy and grace? Do we live as His grateful servants, yielding to His will? Only as we recognize the importance of genuine humility and acknowledge our dependence on Him can we have a heart that’s “in the right place.”

Remember that no one can glorify self and Jesus Christ at the same time.