Seven Sins (1) - Pride
Seven Sins (1): Pride and Arrogance
Dr. Gregg Strawbridge * January 13, 2008 (Prov. 6:16-19)
There are six things that the LORD hates, seven that are an abomination to him: haughty eyes, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked plans, feet that make haste to run to evil, a false witness who breathes out lies, and one who sows discord among brothers. (Prov 6:16-19 ESV)
EXPOSITION - In this well known Proverb, seven deadly sins are described which God says are just as serious as covenant breaking apostasy (“an abomination” Lev 20:13, Deut 12:31, Deut 23:18). These seven actions are specific, personal attitudes and actions. It lies within each person’s capacity to commit these or to refrain. The Lord hates, and therefore judges these sins. The form of this “six things. . . seven” means that it is not an exhaust list (Col 3:8-9, Gal 5:19-21). Conversely, if God hates these things, then He loves and desires (1) humility, (2) truthful speech, (3) preservation of life, (4) pure thoughts, (5) eagerness to do good things, (6) honest witnesses, and (7) peaceful harmony. We have these righteous anti-sins commended to us in the first seven Beatitudes (Matthew 5). This passage also references the whole ability of a person, from the eyes to the arms. Each major member of the body is indicated. This is not exhaustive, but it is representative.
EXHORTATIONS - We must see our arrogance and pride in all of the disguises and masks we place on it. We must rid ourselves from depending on any form of “haughty eyes” in our dealing with others. 1) Sometimes it is disguised as righteousness. We look at others who are unbelievers, immature or inconsistent believers and make judgments as though we are gods. In judging them, we exercise our “haughty eyes.” 2) Sometimes sinful pride is disguised as discernment. We “discern” everyone else's worth and assess them for their gifts, social station, their character or their knowledge. The very act of doing this bolster’s the “discerner’s” pride. 3) Another form of sinful self-appraisal is what I will call “inverse pride” - a sinfully low self-esteem which rejects God’s own objective Word about a person. A baptized believer in fellowship at the Table should believe what God says about being accepted in Christ rather than whimper for other people to fill the void of their needs.
Gregg Strawbridge, Ph.D., is the pastor of All Saints Church in Lancaster, PA. He became a committed follower of Jesus Christ at age 20, discipled in the context of a University Navigator Ministry. As a result of personal discipleship he went on to study at Columbia Biblical Seminary (M.A., Columbia, SC, 1990), as well as a Ph.D. in education and philosophy... read more
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