Pride comes before a fall

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Written by Angelique Geeringh

This week we are looking at the scripture found in Proverbs 16:18 (NIV).

‘Pride goes before destruction, a haughty spirit before a fall.’

According to the Collins Dictionary, you use the word ‘haughty’ to describe someone's behaviour or appearance when you disapprove of the fact that they seem to be very proud and to think that they are better than other people.

We live in a time where personal achievements and being proud of our individual successes, is often held up as the standard of what to strive for. This is all fine and well, until pride and arrogance replace humility and kindness and personal ego is all that remains. With the advent of reality TV, it is easy to think that this is an ailment of our generation, when in fact, pride and a haughty spirit, are seen again and again in the Bible.

One such a person is found in the Daniel chapter 5, where we meet the grandson of Nebuchadnezzar, Belshazzar. This king was so full of his own pride, that when the Persians and the Medes were about to take over his kingdom, he chose that time to have a party. To compound his arrogant behaviour, he used the sacred items that were taken from the temple in Jerusalem.  A hand then wrote on the wall in the venue where the king was having the party. The king was terrified and none of his advisors could translate the message. Eventually Daniel as called and he interpreted the writing on the wall. One of the words on the wall was, ‘Tekel’ and according to Daniel 5:27 , this meant that the king had been weighed in the balances and found wanting.

As followers of Jesus, when we are ‘weighed in the balances’ what is the major weight in our lives? The humility and kindness as reflected by Jesus, or pride and arrogance as held up by the world?

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