Pride is the opposite of humility. It is part of the world system, and it results in rebellion against God. Proud people think they are better than others and that they don’t need God.
Pride is part of the world system that opposes God (I John 2:16) and is contrary to the Spirit of God (I Cor. 2:12). Being a friend of the world makes one an enemy of God (James 4:4).
Therefore, a person cannot serve pride and God at the same time (Matt. 6:24; Luke 16:13).
In fact, Jesus took away the possibility of neutrality when He said, “He that is not with me is against me” (Matt. 12:30).
Paul wrote about the unsaved walking “according to the course of this world” (Eph. 2:2), and that they were without God in the world (Eph. 2:12; Matt. 7:21-23).
God uses things the world considers foolish to confound the wisest that the world can find. He uses things the world thinks are weak to confound the mightiest that the world can produce. He uses things the world considers of little value to humble things that the world exalts. God uses things the world despises to humble the noble and things that are powerless to defeat those who appear powerful (I Corinthians 1:27-28).
Jesus told a parable to some people who thought they were better than others because they depended on what they did or did not do to be right with God.
The Pharisee in the parable thought he was better than a nearby publican because this Pharisee did not cheat people by overcharging them through fraud and deceit; he was not immoral; he fasted twice a week; and he carefully paid tithes (Luke 18:9-13).
But Jesus indicated that this Pharisee was not justified because he was exalting himself instead of asking for mercy (Luke 18:14).
Jews believed they were spiritually better than Gentiles since they were not Jews. A Gentile could have no part with Israel in the Mosaic law unless they became a proselyte and were circumcised. That meant Gentiles could have nothing to do with the tabernacle, the priesthood, eating holy things, or being anointed with the anointing oil.
Worse than that, Jews hated Samaritans and could have no contact or fellowship with them because Samaritans had married pagans and had their own religion, which was a mixture of Judaism and paganism; they also had their own temple and a Messiah who they thought was no greater than Moses.
Because they believed they did not need God, the apostate Laodicean church told the Lord they were “rich, and increased in goods and have need of nothing” even though they were really spiritually “wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked” (Rev. 3:17).
Most people really do not want to know about or have God’s righteousness, and they are “going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God” (Rom. 10:3).
God said, “This people draw near me with their mouth, and with their lips do honour me, but have removed their heart far from me” (Isa. 29:13).
They tell others what to do, but do not do it themselves. In other words, they do not practice what they preach (Matt. 23:2-4). They are hypocrites because the things they do are just to be seen by people. They wear special clothes, and they want special seats and titles so they will be noticed (Matt. 23:5-7). They do these things to please people instead of God (John 12:43). Jesus called them hypocrites and pronounced judgment on them because they were playing the parts outwardly (Matt. 23:13-33).
Pride was the reason that many rebelled against God including Lucifer, Adam and Eve, and, eventually, the Antichrist.
Lucifer said in his heart, “I will exalt my throne above the stars of God,” and “I will be like the most High” (Isaiah 14:13-14).
But God said, “Because thine heart is lifted up, and thou hast said, I am a God,” and “Thine heart was lifted up because of thy beauty” (Ezek. 28:2, 17).
Satan tempted and deceived Adam and Eve by the serpent. He told them, “ye shall be as gods” (Gen. 3:5), and that the tree was to be desired “to make one wise” (Gen. 3:6).
The Bible says that the Antichrist will be moved by pride when he takes over the Jewish temple, declares himself as God, and demands worship (Dan. 8:9-12; II Thess. 2:4).
The only answer to pride is for a prideful person to recognize that he is a sinner, repent of his sin, accept Jesus as his Savior and Lord, and allow the Holy Spirit to produce the fruit of meekness or humility in his heart and life. It is the only realistic view of self from God’s perspective. It is the realization that, at our best, there is no good in us, and we are unprofitable without Christ (Luke 17:10; Rom. 7:18). Therefore, we should esteem others better (Phil. 2:3) and prefer others above ourselves (Rom. 12:10).