Daniel 4: What do pride and humility look like? 

            Old Testament narrative often illustrates a doctrine that is taught elsewhere in the Bible. That certainly seems to be the case with Daniel chapter 4 which is a vivid illustration of the truth that "God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble” (Proverbs 3:34 & James 4:6). We can listen to sermon.
 
            In Daniel 4 we were considering what pride and humility look like. In brief, pride looks like King Nebuchadnezzar – which is why God had to humble him so dramatically. Humility looks like King Jesus – which is why God gave him grace and exalted him to the highest place (see Philippians 2:3-11). Which means that to be humble means to come to Christ and to copy Christ.
 
            Had we more time, I would have shared these lists compiled by Stuart Scott in his booklet From Pride to Humility. First of all Scott lists 30 biblical indicators as to whether pride is resident in our hearts. Can I encourage us to read these slowly and prayerfully.


1.     Complaining against or passing judgment on God (Numbers 14:1-4, 9, 11; Romans 9:20)
2.     A lack of gratitude (2 Chronicles 32:25)
3.     Anger (Proverbs 28:25; Matthew 20:1-16)
4.     Seeing yourself as better than others (Luke 7:36-50)
5.     Having an inflated view of your importance, gifts and abilities (Acts 12:21-23)
6.     Being focused on the lack of your gifts and abilities (1 Cor. 12:14-25)
7.     Perfectionism (Matthew 23:24-28)
8.     Talking too much (Proverbs 10:19)
9.     Talking too much about yourself (Proverbs 27:2; Galatians 6:3)
10. Seeking independence or control (1 Corinthians 1:10-13; Ephesians 5:21)
11. Being consumed with what others think (Galatians 1:10)
12. Being devastated or angered by criticism (Proverbs 13:1)
13. Being unteachable (Proverbs 19:20; John 9:13-34)
14. Being sarcastic, hurtful, degrading, talking down to them(Proverbs 12:18, 24)
15. A lack of service (Galatians 5:13, Ephesians 2:10)
16. A lack of compassion (Matthew 5:7, 18:23-35)
17. Being defensive or blame-shifting (Genesis 3:12-13; Proverbs 12:1)
18. A lack of admitting when you are wrong (Proverbs 10:17)
19. A lack of asking forgiveness (Matthew 5:23-24)
20. A lack of biblical prayer (Luke 18:10-14)
21. Resisting authority or being disrespectful (1 Peter 2:13-17)
22. Voicing preferences or opinions when not asked (Philippians 2:1-4)
23. Minimizing your own sin and shortcomings (Matthew 7:3-5)
24. Maximizing others’ sin and shortcomings (Matthew 7:3-5; Luke 18:9-14)
25. Being impatient or irritable with others (Ephesians 4:31-32)
26. Being jealous or envious (1 Corinthians 13:4)
27. Using others (Matthew 7:12; Philippians 2:3-4)
28. Being deceitful by covering up sins, faults, and mistakes (Proverbs 11:3; 28:13)
29. Using attention-getting tactics (1 Peter 3:3,4)
30. Not having close relationships (Proverbs 18:1-2; Hebrews 10:24-25)
 
            He then lists 24 manifestations of what Christ exalting humility should produce in our life.
 
1.     Recognizing and trusting God’s character (Psalm 119:66)
2.     Seeing yourself as having no right to question or judge an Almighty and Perfect God (Psalm 145:17; Romans 9:19-23)
3.     Focusing on Christ (Philippians 1:21; Hebrews 12:1-2)
4.     Biblical praying and a great deal of it (1 Thessalonians 5:17; 1 Timothy 2:1-2)
5.     Being overwhelmed with God’s undeserved grace and goodness (Psalm 116:12-19)
6.     Thankfulness and gratitude in general towards others (1 Thess. 5:18)
7.     Being gentle and patient (Colossians 3:12-14)
8.     Seeing yourself as no better than others (Romans 12:16; Ephesians 3:8)
9.     Having an accurate view of your gifts and abilities (Romans 12:3)
10. Being a good listener (James 1:19; Philippians 2:3-4)
11. Talking about others only if it is good or for their good (Proverbs 11:13)
12. Being gladly submissive and obedient to those in authority (Rom. 12:1-2, 13:1-2)
13. Preferring others over yourself (Romans 12:10)
14. Being thankful for criticism or reproof (Proverbs 9:8, 27:5-6)
15. Having a teachable spirit (Proverbs 9:9)
16. Seeking always to build up others (Ephesians 4:29)
17. Serving (Galatians 5:13)
18. A quickness in admitting when you are wrong (Proverbs 29:23)
19. A quickness in granting and asking for forgiveness (Colossians 3:12-14)
20. Repenting of sin as a way of life (Colossians 3:1-14; 1 Timothy 4:7-9)
21. Minimizing others’ sins or shortcomings in comparison to one’s own (Matthew 7:3-4)
22. Being genuinely glad for others (Romans 12:15)
23. Being honest and open about who you are and the areas in which you need growth (Philippians     3:12-14; Galatians 6:2)
24. Possessing close relationships (Acts 20:31-38)
 
            Beloved, pride is our greatest enemy and humility our greatest friend. So in Christ the truly humble One, let’s root out pride and pursue humility. For as Daniel 4 illustrates, "God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble.”
 
Robin Weekes
 

Robin Weekes, 04/08/2014

Permalink