What About Pride       Luke 18:9-14,18-23       01-09-05

The first part of this lesson centers in a parable of two men. One is haughty, and the other is humble. In context Jesus was talking to men who trusted in themselves, and thought they were better than other people. This is always fertile soil for unprofitable pride. Pride can be sneaky, and most people do not recognize it. It might be profitable for us to ask friends and relatives if we act prideful, and if so, how they would recommend we correct it. All of us need to ask What About Pride in our lives?

1.    Pride and . . The Haughty Person. 18:11-12

    A.    The Prideful . . Championing of the Haughty Person. 18:11 a
        11 The Pharisee took his stand and was praying like this: 'God, I thank You that I'm not like other people--

    B.    The Prideful . . Comparison of the Haughty Person. 18:11 b
        "greedy, unrighteous, adulterers, or even like this tax collector.

    C.    The Prideful . . Conceit of the Haughty Person. 1:12
        :12 I fast twice a week; I give a tenth of everything I get.'

        Most haughty people champion themselves. They make comparisons in a way that always favors them. The Pharisee in the parable brags about his habits in a very conceited manner. Today, the title, Pharisee@ carries with it a negative connotation because the attitude in this parable remains too prevalent among some religious people. My mom always told my sisters and I, self praise stinks. If you could smell this Pharisee I think my mom=s statement would prove itself correct.

2.    Pride and . . The Humble Person. 18:13

    A.    The . . Stand of the Humble Person. 18:13 a
            "But the tax collector, standing far off, would not even raise his eyes to heaven

    B.    The . . Striking of the Humble Person. 18:13 b
            "but kept striking his chest"

    C.    The . . Saying of the Humble Person. 18:13 c
"and saying, 'God, turn Your wrath from me--a sinner!'

        In the parable we notice the contrast between pride and humility. The tax collector demonstrates a humble stance. He further strikes his chest beating himself down rather than elevating, and championing himself. The obvious difference in the speech of the humble person contrasts itself with the pride of bragging people. I like the line in the chorus AHumble yourself in the sight of the Lord, and He will lift you up.@

3.    Pride and . . The Honored Person. 18:14

    A.    The . . Judgment for the Honored Person. 1:14 a
        "I tell you, this one went down to his house justified rather than the other;"

    B.    The . . Justification of the Honored Person. 1:14 b
        "because everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but the one who humbles himself will be exalted."

        Judgment for prideful people surprises them, but seems obvious to everyone else. You can almost hear the applause for the tax collector as most people heartily agree with the Lord=s judgment. The humility of the tax collector receives justification from the Lord while the proud Pharisee who would not humble himself is humbled by the Lord. Many of those who have been humbled by the Lord wish they had taken the action of humbling themselves.

4.    Pride and . . The Hopeless Person. 18:18-23

    A.    The . . Comprehension of the Hopeless Person. 18:18-19
            18 A ruler asked Him, "Good Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?" 19 "Why do you call Me good?" Jesus asked him.
            "No one is good but One--God.

    B.    The . . Character of the Hopeless Person. 18:20-21
        20 You know the commandments: Do not commit adultery; do not murder; do not steal; do not bear false witness; honor your father and mother." 21 "I have kept all these from my youth," he said.

    C.    The . . Commitment of the Hopeless Person. 18:22-23
        22 When Jesus heard this, He told him, "You still lack one thing: sell all that you have and distribute it to the poor, and you will have
treasure in heaven. Then come, follow Me."  23 After he heard this, he became extremely sad, because he was very rich

        The thinking of the prideful person lacks the obvious comprehension of truth. Asking what it takes to inherit eternal life illustrates this young ruler=s lack of understanding. The Lord then asks him why he calls Him good since only God is good. In my opinion Jesus was asking Ado you believe I am good because I am the Son of God?@ The character of the prideful person magnifies itself as he claims he kept the commands since his youth. If you analyze this you can make the statement he had broken the first commandment as he loved money more than God. If that is a correct observation then he also lied and broke the ninth commandment. I call this person hopeless because after asking a great question he walked away from the answer and a commitment to Jesus. I make the judgment; uncontrolled pride will keep you from following Jesus because you don=t have riches; they have you.    Amen? Amen!