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Temptation-Part 5

Temptation - Part V
The Pride of Life

Thus says the LORD:  Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom,  Let not the mighty man glory in his might,  Nor let the rich man glory in his riches; But let him who glories glory in this,  That he understands and knows Me,  That I am the LORD, exercising lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness in the earth.  For in these I delight, says the LORD. Jeremiah 9:23-24 (NKJV)

We are looking at a series of devotionals on "Temptation." We have learned that we get our biblical meaning of "Temptation" from the word, "Peirasmos," pi-ras-mos´; which basically means to "Test" or "Prove" someone.  So in essence, Satan's temptation of man is his way of testing us, or attempting to prove that we will fail in our obedience to God and His will for us in that particular situation.  

We have been looking at the 3-categories that are listed in 1John 2:15-16 in which All temptation will be introduced to us, and they are:

  1. The lust of the Flesh
  2. The lust of the Eyes
  3. The Pride of Life

We began to look at how to properly deal with The Lust of the Flesh, which is by disciplining our bodies.  We then looked at how to deal with The Lust of the Eyes, which is to guard what we look at.   So, let's take a look at the 3rd category in which temptation will be introduced to us.

3.    The Pride of Life

The Pride of Life is at the base of every other temptation including The Lust of the Flesh, and The Lust of the Eyes.  This is because the "Boastful" pride of human nature cares primarily about "Self," and it attempts to promote itself above everyone else.  

Such was the case with King Nebuchadnezzar.  He was arrogant and prideful - he had been warned, but he continued to walk in his pride. The Book of Daniel records how God dealt with this. One day the King was walking about the royal palace of Babylon.  The king spoke, saying, "Is not this great Babylon, that I have built for a royal dwelling by my mighty power and for the honor of my majesty?  While the word was still in the kings mouth, a voice fell from heaven: "King Nebuchadnezzar, to you it is spoken: the kingdom has departed from you!  And they shall drive you from men, and your dwelling shall be with the beasts of the field. They shall make you eat grass like oxen; and seven times shall pass over you, until you know that the Most High rules in the kingdom of men, and gives it to whomever He chooses."

That very hour the word was fulfilled concerning Nebuchadnezzar; he was driven from men and ate grass like oxen; his body was wet with the dew of heaven till his hair had grown like eagles' feathers and his nails like birds' claws (Daniel 4:29-33).

Nebuchadnezzar believed that everything he possessed was achieved by his own might, and power.  It is the same for many people today with their possessions - they too believe it is by their hand - by their power, by their wisdom, or by their skill that they have been blessed.  It is that same pride that caused a 9ƌ" tall giant named Goliath to be slain by a young shepherd boy named David (See 1Samuel 17).  

It is that same pride that continues to cause us to fall as well.  It is when we refuse to acknowledge who God is, or to abide in His will for our life.  The Book of Romans captures what will happen if we continue to walk in this type of disobedience and pride.

For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, because, although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened. Professing to be wise, they became fools&Therefore God also gave them up to uncleanness, in the lusts of their hearts, to dishonor their bodies among themselves, who exchanged the truth of God for the lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Romans 1:18, 21-22, 24-25(NKJV)

Q:    How can we guard ourselves against the Pride of Life?
A:    We must "Humble" ourselves before the Lord.

Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He will lift you up. James 4:10 (NKJV)

Hey Christian, we need to be alert, knowing that Satan is seeking whom he may devour.  We need to resist him, being steadfast in the faith (1Peter 5:8-9).  When we are told to "Resist" him, we need to know that this is a command not to turn and run but to stand firm.

So having these instructions from God we can clearly see that Satan is not "all-powerful."  We can be confident in knowing that with Gods protection - His continuous presence and his constant regard for His children, Satan can be beaten.  We must remember that Jesus already beat Satan and He is on the throne overseeing our well-being.   

We must be prepared to meet the temptations of the enemy by first putting on the Protective Armor of God each day (See Eph. 6:11), and then by submitting to God and resisting the devil (See James 4:7).   Resisting the devil goes hand in hand with "Submitting" to God.  This means that we willingly place ourselves under the authority of God, to show our respect and to obey him (See John 15-Abiding in God and His Word).  If we abide in God and in His Word, we are submitting to Him, and then we can easily resist the devil - when we do this, he must flee.

STUDY QUESTION: What can we learn about Pride and its affect from the Scriptures contained within this devotional?

PERSONAL INVENTORY: Are you submitting to God and His Lordship in your life, or are you seeking to exalt yourself and fulfill the desires of the flesh?

APPLICATION: Come humbly to the Lord today and seek forgiveness of any pride that you have.  Repent of it, and humble yourself.  Allow God to lift you up in due time, and then defer the glory and honor that you are getting, to Him.

Father, Thank You for being so merciful to me.  Thank You for teaching me the things that I need to know, and for shaping me into the image of Your Son.  Help me to see those areas in my life that I need to lay down in humility.  In Jesus precious name, amen...

Be Blessed, Pastor Scott

Copyright ©2017 by Pastor Scott Wright.
Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Bible text from the New King James Version is not to be reproduced in copies or otherwise by any means except as permitted in writing by Thomas Nelson, Inc., Attn: Bible Rights and Permissions, P.O. Box 141000, Nashville, TN 37214-1000