ESOCS Devotional 28 December 2022
TEXT: DANIEL 4:1-18
MEMORY VERSE: “He cried aloud and said thus: ‘Chop down the tree and cut off its branches, Strip off its leaves and scatter its fruit. Let the beasts get out from under it, And the birds from its branches.” Daniel 4:14
0 And the apostles, when they had returned, told Him all that they had done. Then He took them and went aside privately into a deserted place belonging to the city called Bethsaida. 11 But when the multitudes knew it, they followed Him; and He received them and spoke to them about the kingdom of God, and healed those who had need of healing. 12 When the day began to wear away, the twelve came and said to Him, “Send the multitude away, that they may go into the surrounding towns and country, and lodge and get provisions; for we are in a deserted lace ”
King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon brought down the anger and wrath of God upon himself because of the sins of pride, arrogance, haughtiness, and undue self-esteem. God cut him down like a tree and he was reduced to the level of a beast: “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.” (v 33). He lived in the forest for seven years. The intention was to make him realize that man was nothing but dust and ashes (Gen. 18:27; Job 30:19; Job 42:6). After those years God was merciful to him and restored him. He acknowledged the supremacy of God above heaven and earth when he senses returned. In later years, Daniel told his son King Belshazzar, “But when his [Nebuchadnezzar’s] heart was lifted up, and his spirit was hardened in pride, he was deposed from his kingly throne, and they took his glory from him” (Dan. 5:20).
Pride is a very destructive attribute; and it is not Christian. The Scripture cautions us against it: “A man’s pride will bring him low, But the humble in spirit will retain honour” (Prov. 29:23) ; also that “Pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall” (Prov. 16:18). If we live a life of pride, we would make ourselves enemies to God. Pride is a rebellious attitude and the complete opposite of humility. It is associated with Satan and people who have it are like him in character. They are self-conceited; and think that they are better than everyone else. They are usually self-opinionated; and do not acknowledge the superiority of others over them. They are not good as followers and therefore cannot become good leaders. People’s opinions do not matter to them but they would want others to accept theirs. God does not have patience for proud people (Ps. 101:5). A proud look is among the things that God hates (Prov. 6:16 & 17).
Let us learn to be lowly-hearted. We should imitate our Lord. He says to us, “Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.” (Matt. 11:29). Yes! He humbled himself to the extent that He accepted to come into this world in the nature of ordinary men (Phil.2:6). If we are humble, we would have the kind of heart that Jesus has; we would be mild as He is; gentle like Him; caring in the way we treat people; passionate about the wellbeing of others; respectful to others; love people truly; and think about their good.
People who are like Nebuchadnezzar attract hatred for themselves from God and other people. Don’t be like him. They are usually resented by others. No one would be willing to show them kindness or do them good. We should humble ourselves before God and other people. Let us bring ourselves down from the mountain top where we have placed ourselves in our imagination or God would cast us down; and we would have a great fall and may never rise again. The punishment for the sin of pride is always a grievous one. Who can endure it?
- If you have pride in you, begin to erase it from your life.
PRAYERS: Pray the Holy Spirit to deliver you from the spirit and attitude of pride.
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ESOCS Devotional 28 December 2022