Ezekiel 28: 12-19: “You were the seal of perfection, full of wisdom and perfect in beauty. You were in Eden, the garden of God; every precious stone adorned you: carnelian, chrysolite and emerald, topaz, onyx and jasper, lapis lazuli, turquoise and beryl. Your settings and mountings were made of gold; on the day you were created they were prepared. You were anointed as a guardian cherub, for so I ordained you. You were on the holy mount of God; you walked among the fiery stones. You were blameless in your ways from the day you were created till wickedness was found in you. Through your widespread trade you were filled with violence, and you sinned. So I drove you in disgrace from the mount of God, and I expelled you, guardian cherub, from among the fiery stones. Your heart became proud on account of your beauty, and you corrupted your wisdom because of your splendor. So I threw you to the earth; I made a spectacle of you before kings. By your many sins and dishonest trade you have desecrated your sanctuaries. So I made a fire come out from you, and it consumed you, and I reduced you to ashes on the ground in the sight of all who were watching. All the nations who knew you are appalled at you; you have come to a horrible end and will be no more.”
Monday, February 14, 2011
Pride: Our Own Worst Enemy!
Here we are in a vicious battle with our greatest enemy of all time. He is crafty and knows each and every one of our weaknesses. He has millions of resources to use against us and his armies are huge. His war against us appears to be in his favor in every way. However, we have one weapon at our disposal which will conquer this enemy in every case. Yet most of us rarely use it. Most of us have the attitude that we can handle the situation on our own, that we are more than capable. How foolish are we?!?! How many going into a war wouldn’t take an M-4 or some sort of weapon? The military has a creed they recite concerning their weapon. This creed states:
“This is my rifle. There are many like it, but this one is mine. My rifle is my best friend. It is my life. I must master it as I must master my life. My rifle, without me, is useless. Without my rifle, I am useless. I must fire my rifle true. I must shoot straighter than my enemy who is trying to kill me. I must shoot him before he shoots me. I will”......”Before God, I swear this creed. My rifle and myself are the defenders of my country. We are the masters of our enemy. We are the saviors of my life. So be it, until victory is America's and there is no enemy, but peace! Amen”
Now suppose for a minute that a soldier didn’t think this was important. Imagine if he believed his rifle was only a tool that would be nice but not necessary. Because sometimes when we get onto the front lines and have left our weapon back at base, it may be to late to go back for it. What I want to talk about today with all of this is PRIDE.
Proverbs 16:5 “Everyone who is arrogant in heart is an abomination to the Lord; be assured, he will not go unpunished.” Be assured that the pride we hold in our own lives is the greatest weapon against us. Satan knows that this is his biggest resource. If he can only get us to believe that we don’t need God in our lives then he has us for sure. Why does he know this? Because Satan fell to this great evil himself. Satan was not always evil, but was made up to perfection. I feel this is one of the greatest examples of pride we have to learn from.
Satan had everything going for him. But he began to think that he was greater than he was. He believed he could do it all by himself. As a result of his foolish thinking, he was cast into the ground and made into the worst of everything. He became evil in every sense of the word. All because he because prideful and thought he didn't need God or anyone else. For if anyone thinks he is something, when he is nothing, he deceives himself. Galatians 6:3
But here we are in today’s world and we are making the same mistakes. Maybe not on quite a grand scale but we are being prideful nonetheless. I remember my father always telling me the story of the man nailing shingles onto his roof when he suddenly slipped and started falling down the roof. As he was falling he prayed to God saying, “Please Lord, if only you’ll stretch forth your hand and save me I will be a better Christian. I will stop smoking and cheating on my wife. I will go to church each week, just please save me.” At the very last second before falling off the roof, his pant leg caught on a nail stopping him. He then stood up and looking toward the sky said, “Never mind God, this nail saved me.”
How many of us in our own lives are lacking at asking the Lord for help with the things we need? Are we really foolish enough to think that we don’t need His help? We truly are fools if we do. I’m sure each and every one of you have found, just as I have, that when we stop trusting in the Lord and asking for His help, we suddenly find our lives spinning out of control. It is during the times when we think we don’t need the Lord, that He takes away the blessings and shows us how much we really DO need Him.
Remember, everything that you have in this world came from God. You haven’t earned anything in your life without God’s helping hand. Without the Lord, we are nothing! Lower than dirt of the Earth. He is Supreme in all. Don’t get proud in your own lives. Acknowledge the Lord for EVERYTHING you receive. He has given us everything we need for our lives to make us happy, and to prosper, and return to Him. And the ONLY thing He asks of us in return is to remember Him and give Him the praise. How hard of a task is that for us. Work on it this week. Because I know that each of us need to. We are all lacking to some degree in our pride. I was given this idea when I was a child and I’m challenging each of you to do this in your own lives. Each and every day set aside a little bit of time for a “Gratitude Prayer”. This is one prayer where you don’t ask God for one thing. All you do in this prayer is thank Him for all He has given you. Give Him the praise and glory for all that He is and all that He does for you! May God continue to bless you all in your lives and all praise we give to Him, for He is supreme, grand, and all wonderful!