In my article titled Self-love vs. Selfless-love, I have explained the problem with persisting pride in the human heart, and I would now like to explain that in more detail. Over and over again, I have found myself becoming proud of how “humble” I thought I had become…and if you just smiled at those words, it could be because you know exactly what I am talking about! I think that all of us have experienced this at one time or another during our Christian life, because we are all born with the same deceitful-hearted nature, and we therefore need to trust God alone to reveal the deceitfulness in our own hearts since we cannot even know them (Read my article titled The Basis of Just Examination for more info).
Many times, I have been hurt by others, as I am sure we all have....but when we say that someone has hurt us, what else do we mean but that our pride has been hurt? If you think about it, this is really not such a bad thing, because broken pride is actually the way to freedom: “God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble” (James 4:6). And I don’t think that any of us (including myself) can rightfully say that we have completely mastered humility, because none of us has been perfected yet.
If we truly got the view of God that Job and Isaiah did, and thus an accurate view of ourselves, than I think we would realize that no one can possibly say something about us that is too hurtful. We may get offended when people slander us (as I have), but this may be an indication that we are more concerned about our own reputation than the reputation of God.
It seems that many within the church have gotten the idea that it is wrong for us to ever get angry about anything, but that is not what I am suggesting here. The Bible says “Be angry and do not sin: do not let the sun go down on your wrath, nor give place to the devil" (Ephesians 4:26-27).
So if our anger leads to sin, then we can be sure that it is motivated by selfish pride, and this is the kind of anger which gives place to the devil. Jesus on the other hand, was angry toward sin (See Mark 3:5 as an example), and this is a very different kind of anger.
Naturally, the kind of anger we feel is aroused because our pride has been hurt....but the kind of anger Jesus felt was aroused out of concern for the destruction which sin is bringing upon man. So this kind of anger is not giving place to the devil, but it is a genuine concern for those who are willingly destroying themselves and others. If we truly are grieved by sin as Jesus is, then our anger will not lead us into sin…if it does, than it is motivated by pride, and not out of a concern for the well being of others. This is why the Bible tells us that “Love....does not seek its own” (1 Corinthians 13:4-5).
If we are hurt by what someone has said about us, it can only be because we are seeking our own....and according to James 3:14-16, this type of “wisdom” is giving place to the devil. But the one who is truly seeking the well being of others will have no burdens about self, but many about others.
The Bible also tells us that we should not hasten in our spirit to be angry (See Ecclesiastes 7:9), so we can be sure that this kind of anger is motivated by selfish pride, and this is an example of giving place to the devil. The Lord Himself is long suffering (See 2 Peter 3:9), and although His anger is righteous, He is also slow to anger (See Nahum 1:3).
We may be personally offended by the way others have treated us, but this is really just an indication that we are more concerned about our “rights” than the people who we should be concerned about. This is something which I myself have recently become even more convicted of, and that is one of the reasons I was inspired to write this article. So I am not claiming to be on a higher moral level than anyone else.
The blessed mourners of Matthew 5:4 are not mourning for themselves, but they are mourning for others (See Romans 9:1-3 as an example). But we all have a natural tendency to mourn and be angry for ourselves and thus give place to the devil.
The reason that the times are perilous today is because men are lovers of themselves like never before (See 2 Timothy 3:1-2), and that is what I hope this article will help reveal. With the help of Psychology, we have become more self-focused, more feelings oriented, and I believe that this is why many are now more easily offended. This offence, like the words of 2 Timothy 3:1-2, is also foretold in prophesy (See Matthew 24:10). And once again, this has come true because men are lovers of themself.
What Is Humility?
Love Without Hypocrisy
WHAT IS SALVATION?
BACK TO MY HOMEPAGE