I remember once playing a card game with a great Aunt and I was winning and gloating. She said to me: “Pride leads to destruction” and sure enough I lost the game. It was a lesson for me to not count my chickens before they hatched but to also seek humility. It’s a struggle for many of us and I think it can get worse as we get older. I see the pride of former and current leaders getting in their way and slowly they lose their influence and the respect of others. God is a jealous God and if we take credit for our blessings, we are in danger of pride and arrogance and possibly God’s punishment.
This morning I read in 2 Chron 32:24-26…
24 Some time later Hezekiah became deathly sick. He prayed to God and was given a reassuring sign.
25-26 But the sign, instead of making Hezekiah grateful, made him arrogant. This made God angry, and his anger spilled over on Judah and Jerusalem. But then Hezekiah, and Jerusalem with him, repented of his arrogance, and God withdrew his anger while Hezekiah lived.
5 God can’t stomach arrogance or pretense;
believe me, he’ll put those upstarts in their place.
18 First pride, then the crash—
the bigger the ego, the harder the fall.
Just read the life of King Saul and that’s a perfect example of taking credit and trying to take God’s place…
After Samuel anointed Saul as king, Samuel instructed the young ruler to travel to Gilgal where he was to wait seven days for the prophet’s arrival before the offering of sacrifices to God.
Saul went to the appointed place, but he grew impatient when Samuel had not arrived on the seventh day. He then offered the sacrifices himself (1 Samuel 13:8ff), and gave excuses for this sin when the prophet arrived. In disobeying Samuel’s charge, Saul had, in point of fact, disobeyed God (13:13).
1-3 And a final word to you arrogant rich: Take some lessons in lament. You’ll need buckets for the tears when the crash comes upon you. Your money is corrupt and your fine clothes stink. Your greedy luxuries are a cancer in your gut, destroying your life from within. You thought you were piling up wealth. What you’ve piled up is judgment.
What things in your life do you claim all credit for?
Claiming all credit is ridiculous and destructive to yourself and those around you. Offer your pride to God and seek His forgiveness. Pray: “less of me Father and more of you. Help me to be faithful and humble and when others see me succeed that they would praise you and not me! Amen.”