Wednesday, 24 March 2021

Judgment on Pride

 Scripture:  James 4 v 5 - 7: " Do ye think that the scripture saith in vain, The spirit that dwelleth in us lusteth to envy? 

6  But he giveth more grace. Wherefore he saith, God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble.
7  Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you."

We worship a God who does not change.  From generation to generation, from millennium to millennium, He is the same.  Jesus is the same, yesterday, today and forever.

In Proverbs it says a haughty spirit goes before a fall, and pride before destruction.  Indeed it was when pride was found in Lucifer that he fell from Heaven like lightning.  It is something we face in this world.

National Pride, pride in our achievements, pride in our family, pride in our superior spiritual abilities, pride in our sportsmen and women.   Pride lurks around every corner so when the Lord says He resists the proud but gives grace to the humble, we need to find out what being humble means, before we are eating grass under the dew of heaven for seven years as happened to King Nebuchadnezzar in the Book of Daniel.

He was a very arrogant king, and after being warned that disobeying God would have serious consequences, he carried on in his pride and the judgment of God fell up in him.  He became mad and had to live off grass, roots and plants under the open sky for 7 years until he acknowledged the power and might of our God.  And he did.  He got the message.

Humility is accepting that without God we are nothing.  It means giving Him credit for every good thing.  One pastor explained it well.  He said he was awarded a badge for being most humble.  He lost his award when he pinned it to his shirt.

Humility is displayed by keeping out of the limelight, keeping a low profile, acknowledging the achievements of others and esteeming others more highly than yourself.  This is the correct Christian perspective that allows the grace of God to flourish in our lives.

God resists the proud by not hearing their prayers or cries.  If we have been praying for a long time without an answer then check carefully for pride in our hearts and minds.  Another way He resists us is that we seldom feel His presence or the  gifts of the Holy Spirit manifesting our ministry or life.

There are many denominations of churches who shun the gifts of the Holy Spirit as not applicable today.  Superior knowledge and technology have made the gifts obsolete, they say.  It is because of pride in the work of men's hands that causes them to reject these amazing gifts.

The gifts of the Holy Spirit are found in 1 Corinthians 12 v 6 - 10: "And there are diversities of operations, but it is the same God which worketh all in all.
7  But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal.
8  For to one is given by the Spirit the word of wisdom; to another the word of knowledge by the same Spirit;
9  To another faith by the same Spirit; to another the gifts of healing by the same Spirit;
10  To another the working of miracles; to another prophecy; to another discerning of spirits; to another divers kinds of tongues; to another the interpretation of tongues:"

Our Father gave us these gifts to help us to grow in grace and become useful instruments in His hands.  We may have one or two or all the gifts operating in our lives.  The Lord adds and refines and deepens these gifts as we mature in the correct use of them.

If we arrogantly spurn these wonderful gifts from our Father, it insults Him, and may cause the spiritual light in those churches to diminish to nothing.  The thief who is Satan comes in to steal, kill and destroy in those places and he can work undetected because the only way of discerning him is not employed.  

The gift of discerning of spirits of good and evil is probably the most misunderstood and yet it is so powerful in dealing with things we cannot see but which have huge influence on our lives.  Firstly, we can discern the anointed presence of Jesus in our midst.  We can even smell the Rose of Sharon as that is His perfume. (I am smelling Him right now even as I write these words!)  Oh Lord I love you, please let all who read these words have the smell of Your presence as evidence of Your truth.

Demons have an odour too, unpleasant and offensive.  With the gift of discernment they are identifiable and can be accurately bound and cast out in the name of Jesus.  1 Corinthians 9 v 26: " I therefore so run, not as uncertainly; so fight I, not as one that beateth the air:"  This we can all do when we are baptized in the Holy Spirit and can discern demons.  Paul had no uncertainty, he was accurate and successful in dealing with demons, just as Jesus Himself did.

Pride in the hearts of those who decide on what part of God's Word is acceptable and what can be dispensed with, affects many millions of souls for which those who continue to do this will be held accountable.  We may be very vocal about corruption in the world, but if the corruption of God's Word does not bother us it is a manifestation of the spirit of pride and it needs to be bound and cast out.

A spirit of pride has a posse of other demons accompanying it.  They are deception, domination, unteachableness, tantrums, manipulation, elitism, racism, rivalry and competition.  These characteristics showing up in Christians is contrary to who we are meant to be.

If we are truly humble we always want others to succeed.  If we are abiding in the Vine we have surrendered all to Jesus, our blessed Saviour, and no longer have our own will, we are submitted to God's will for our lives.  Pride will never allow that.  It is independent and egotistical.  It never sees any fault in itself.  Pride will never admit failure, which is why our enemy continues to flaunt himself, denying that he can ever lose.

Jesus came to give us life more abundantly, and His final words before His ascension to Heaven were that the disciples must wait in Jerusalem for the Father's gift of the Holy Spirit, which came ten days later on the Day of Pentecost.  In Peter's first sermon after he was filled and anointed by the Holy Spirit, he said the gift was for everyone even those afar off, meaning us nearly 2000 years later.

If you are missing out on this wonderful blessing go search for it somewhere else or get alone with the Lord and ask Him to baptize you in the  Holy Spirit and give you the gift of tongues, miracles, faith, prophecy and healing.  Yes and discerning of spirits too.  It will change your life completely and beautifully to be so close to God and see Him work His wonders through you.  Crucify your pride and be adorned with humility and meekness.  It is a precious ornament in the sight of our God.

Prayer:  Heavenly Father crush every bit of pride, ego, arrogance and superiority in us until it is gone forever.  Replace it with submitted and humble hearts that exalt You above all.  We ask for Your perfect gifts to manifest in us for the benefit of those who desperately need them.  Help us O Lord to be teachable, reachable disciples.  In Jesus' name. Amen.