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Why Pride is Bad for the Proud
   
. . . Because pride is a sin of course; isn't it?
No. Why is it a sin?
 
. . . It's bad for relationships.
Is it OK if I'm proud of my humility in personal relationships?
 
. . . I don't know. . .
The proud are not always arrogant. Pride can be very subtle.
There
is a good reason why the Bible warns us against pride.
 
 
Things are not called 'sin' simply because God does not like them. That misses the most important point – God's character. The essence of all morality is the self-less love of God which was demonstrated to us in Jesus the Christ.
 
  Yes, God is holy. But 'holy' means distinct or separate, compared to all else. Holy is not a moral characteristic in itself.  
Pride
is evil because it deafens the soul to God. Pride shuts down our spiritual hearing; the guidance which we need is lost, and our life journey heads toward self-destruction. Remember that:
 
  God loves all of us – and that is why pride is bad!  
 
Christ died for the proud as much as for any other sinner, but practically pride undoes what the great mercy of God has justly obtained for us in the death of Jesus. Cursed be pride!
 
The Bible illustrates this principle vividly in the life of the great emperor – Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon.  
 
God gave this king a dream showing his own and following empires that would rule over Palestine, knowing the clever manner of Nechuchadnezzar, that he would put Babylon's famous dream-interpretors to the test in the situation.
Daniel 2.
 
This, through Daniel's faith-response to God in prayer, then opens the way for Daniel to bring the true interpretation and so win Nebuchadnezzar's trust concerning the Most High. But Nebuchadnezzar does not hear.
 
Instead,
he copies what he saw in his dream ('you are the head of gold' 2:38) and builds an awesome gilded image to represent his rule and loyalty to him.
Daniel 3.
 
The crisis which thus erupts from this for the three Hebrews (Shadrach, Meshach, Abednego) and their loyalty to God Most High, the miracle that saves them, and the angelic presence in the flames visible to Nebuchadnezzar is another message to him from God. But he does not hear.
Daniel 3:25.
Next
he has another dream. This time he calls for Daniel. The interpretation warns him that he will loose his mind for seven years if he does not hear God –
"break off your sins by practicing righteousness,
and your iniquities by showing mercy to the oppressed,
that there may perhaps be a lengthening of your prosperity."
Daniel 4:27
God's
word to Nebuchadnezzar through these three events was an outreach of God's compassion to him.
 
But,
his pride deafens him, and so –
"At the end of twelve months he was walking on the roof of the royal palace of Babylon, and the king answered and said, 'Is not this great Babylon, which I have built by my mighty power as a royal residence and for the glory of my majesty?'
While the words were still in the king's mouth, there fell a voice from heaven,
'O King Nebuchadnezzar, to you it is spoken: The kingdom has departed from you, and you shall be driven from among men, and your dwelling shall be with the beasts of the field. And you shall be made to eat grass like an ox, and seven periods of time shall pass over you, until you know that the Most High rules the kingdom of men and gives it to whom he will.'
Immediately the word was fulfilled against Nebuchadnezzar. He was driven from among men and ate grass like an ox, and his body was wet with the dew of heaven till his hair grew as long as eagles' feathers, and his nails were like birds' claws."
Daniel 4:29-33.
So seven
years later the king himself writes –
 
 
"Now I, Nebuchadnezzar, praise and extol and honor the King of heaven,
for all His works are right and His ways are just; and those who walk in pride He is able to humble."
Daniel 4:37
 
The Bible is full of warnings in this regard because God loves us.
 
  "In the pride of his face the wicked does not seek Him [God]; all his thoughts are, 'There is no God'." Psalms 10:4
  "Pride goes before [prepares the way to] destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall." Proverbs 16:18
  "One's pride will bring him low, but he who is lowly in spirit will obtain honor." Proverbs 29:23
And
we have the painful lesson of a whole nation written for us in the Word of God –
 
  "Thus says the LORD: Even so will I spoil the pride of Judah and the great pride of Jerusalem.
This evil people, who refuse to hear My words, who stubbornly follow their own heart
and have gone after other gods to serve them and worship them, shall be like this loincloth, which is good for nothing."
Jeremiah 13:9-10
Pride
blinds the mind to God's guidance. Pride closes the ears to God's warnings.
 
 
Pride destroys the proud.
 
 
Praying for the proud will not prevent this destruction for it is the natural and just outcome, but prayer for mercy upon the proud will give more time and opportunity to learn humility in order to hear.
 
God
does not change, and therefore today's leaders need to be no less aware than Nebuchadnezzar that their own utterances, and, in particular, their self-glorifying attitude toward other nations, is watched by God and will have consequences.
 

See: The Politics of Pride
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