WFW: Lessons on Pride from Psalm 10
Psalm 40:4 Blessed is that man that maketh the LORD his trust, and respecteth not the proud, nor such as turn aside to lies.
This week, we continue our study on pride. To recap, last week we were talking about how strife is pride. To see my complete study on pride and to get a better understanding of what will be presented in this post, click here. This week, we will begin by examining Psalm 10...
Ps 10:1-3 "Why do You stand afar off, O LORD? Why do You hide in times of trouble? The wicked in his pride persecutes the poor; Let them be caught in the plots which they have devised. For the wicked boasts of his heart's desire; He blesses the greedy and renounces the LORD."
Isaiah 5:20 Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; Who put darkness for light, and light for darkness; Who put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter! Prov 17:13 "Whoever rewards evil for good, Evil will not depart from his house."
10:4 "The wicked in his proud countenance does not seek God; God is in none of his thoughts."
Ps 50:16-23 "But to the wicked God says: 'What right have you to declare My statutes, Or take My covenant in your mouth, Seeing you hate instruction And cast My words behind you? When you saw a thief, you consented with him, And have been a partaker with adulterers. You give your mouth to evil, And your tongue frames deceit. You sit and speak against your brother; You slander your own mother's son. These things you have done, and I kept silent; You thought that I was altogether like you; But I will rebuke you, And set them in order before your eyes. Now consider this, you who forget God, Lest I tear you in pieces, And there be none to deliver: Whoever offers praise glorifies Me; And to him who orders his conduct aright I will show the salvation of God."
Proverbs1:23-33 "Turn you at my reproof: behold, I will pour out my spirit unto you, I will make known my words unto you. Because I have called, and ye refused; I have stretched out my hand, and no man regarded; But ye have set at nought all my counsel, and would none of my reproof: I also will laugh at your calamity; I will mock when your fear cometh; When your fear cometh as desolation, and your destruction cometh as a whirlwind; when distress and anguish cometh upon you. Then shall they call upon me, but I will not answer; they shall seek me early, but they shall not find me: For that they hated knowledge, and did not choose the fear of the LORD: They would none of my counsel: they despised all my reproof. Therefore shall they eat of the fruit of their own way, and be filled with their own devices. For the turning away of the simple shall slay them, and the prosperity of fools shall destroy them. But whoso hearkeneth unto me shall dwell safely, and shall be quiet from fear of evil."
Isaiah 65:11-12 "But ye are they that forsake the LORD, that forget my holy mountain, that prepare a table for that troop, and that furnish the drink offering unto that number. Therefore will I number you to the sword, and ye shall all bow down to the slaughter: because when I called, ye did not answer; when I spake, ye did not hear; but did evil before mine eyes, and did choose that wherein I delighted not."
Here, Isaiah was speaking of the sacrifices which the people were offering to false gods. However, it is interesting that the Lord says that they "did choose that wherein I delighted not" since we were speaking on how being humble is to delight ourselves in the Lord. The Lord says of these people that they "say, 'Stand by thyself, come not near to me; for I am holier than thou,' stating that "These are a smoke in my nose, a fire that burneth all the day." So we can see that pride is an abomination to the Lord. In fact, the Bible actually says this in a few places:
Proverbs 16:5 "Everyone proud in heart is an abomination to the LORD; Though they join forces, none will go unpunished."
Proverbs 6:16-19 "These six things the LORD hates, Yes, seven are an abomination to Him: A proud look, A lying tongue, Hands that shed innocent blood, A heart that devises wicked plans, Feet that are swift in running to evil, A false witness who speaks lies, And one who sows discord among brethren."
Proverbs 8:13 "The fear of the LORD is to hate evil; Pride and arrogance and the evil way And the perverse mouth I hate."
All of the above passages show that pride is evil, and that the Lord hates it. The first Scripture which we reference (Prov 16:5) stated that pride is an abomination to the Lord; immediately following this statement, it says, "By mercy and truth iniquity is purged: and by the fear of the LORD men depart from evil." Jesus said, "Your Word is Truth"; therefore, we see once again that we rid ourselves of the pride through the Word of God. In the same chapter in Proverbs (16:17-19), we read, "The highway of the upright is to depart from evil: he that keepeth his way preserveth his soul. Pride goes before destruction, And a haughty spirit before a fall. Better to be of a humble spirit with the lowly, Than to divide the spoil with the proud."
Pride and every other sin is evil in God's eyes; He says that when we do those things we are not choosing those things in which He delights. You see, to truly be pleasing to the Lord, we need to delight in the things in which He delights -- we need to "do those things which are pleasing in His sight." The full Scripture says, "And whatever we ask we receive from Him, because we keep His commandments and do those things that are pleasing in His sight." (1John 3:22) That's why the Scriptures say, "Delight your self in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart" -- because you are doing what He says.
1 Cor 10:12 states, "Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall." Those people were saying "Stand by yourself... I'm holier than you"; in other words, "I'm standing just fine by myself; I don't need any help. I'm better than you are -- get away from me, you good-for-nothing." The Bible clarifies how we really stand (speaking of being grafted into Christ, the Branch): "Well said. Because of unbelief they were broken off, and you stand by faith. Do not be haughty, but fear." The word "haughty" here has these meanings: "to be lofty in mind, i.e. arrogant:--be highminded; lofty (in... character):--high(-er...) (esteemed); be exalted, height, (on) high; ... above, beyond... superior to." This goes very well with a Scripture we looked at last week: Philippians 2:3 -- "Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself."
10:5-6 "His ways are always prospering; Your judgments are far above, out of his sight; As for all his enemies, he sneers at them.He has said in his heart, 'I shall not be moved; I shall never be in adversity.'"
Doesn't this sound familiar? The city Babylon in Revelation gives a good example of this. Here is what God said about her (Rev 18:7-8): " In the measure that she glorified herself and lived luxuriously, in the same measure give her torment and sorrow; for she says in her heart, 'I sit as queen, and am no widow, and will not see sorrow.' Therefore her plagues will come in one day--death and mourning and famine. And she will be utterly burned with fire, for strong is the Lord God who judges her." Another Scripture which comes to mind is Romans 2:5-11: "But in accordance with your hardness and your impenitent heart you are treasuring up for yourself wrath in the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God, who 'will render to each one according to his deeds': eternal life to those who by patient continuance in doing good seek for glory, honor, and immortality; but to those who are self-seeking and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness--indignation and wrath, tribulation and anguish, on every soul of man who does evil, of the Jew first and also of the Greek; but glory, honor, and peace to everyone who works what is good, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. For there is no partiality with God." Psalm 37, the famous "delight yourself in the Lord" passage, has this to say: "Wait on the LORD, and keep his way, and he shall exalt thee to inherit the land: when the wicked are cut off, thou shalt see it. I have seen the wicked in great power, and spreading himself like a green bay tree. Yet he passed away, and, lo, he was not: yea, I sought him, but he could not be found."
10:7 His mouth is full of cursing and deceit and oppression; Under his tongue is trouble and iniquity.
Psalms 12: 2-12 "They speak idly everyone with his neighbor; With flattering lips and a double heart they speak. May the LORD cut off all flattering lips, And the tongue that speaks proud things, Who have said, 'With our tongue we will prevail; Our lips are our own; Who is lord over us?' 'For the oppression of the poor, for the sighing of the needy, Now I will arise,' says the LORD; 'I will set him in the safety for which he yearns.'"
10: 8-11 "He sits in the lurking places of the villages; In the secret places he murders the innocent; His eyes are secretly fixed on the helpless. He lies in wait secretly, as a lion in his den; He lies in wait to catch the poor; He catches the poor when he draws him into his net. So he crouches, he lies low, That the helpless may fall by his strength. He has said in his heart, 'God has forgotten; He hides His face; He will never see.'"
Psalms 36:1 "An oracle within my heart concerning the transgression of the wicked: There is no fear of God before his eyes."
10:12 "Arise, O LORD! O God, lift up Your hand! Do not forget the humble."
Ps 9:12 "When He avenges blood, He remembers them; He does not forget the cry of the humble."
10:13 "Why do the wicked renounce God? He has said in his heart, 'You will not require an account.'"
Ps 9:17-18 "The wicked shall be turned into hell, And all the nations that forget God. For the needy shall not always be forgotten; The expectation of the poor shall not perish forever.
10:14-18 "But You have seen, for You observe trouble and grief, To repay it by Your hand. The helpless commits himself to You; You are the helper of the fatherless. Break the arm of the wicked and the evil man; Seek out his wickedness until You find none. The LORD is King forever and ever; The nations have perished out of His land.LORD, You have heard the desire of the humble; You will prepare their heart; You will cause Your ear to hear, To do justice to the fatherless and the oppressed, That the man of the earth may oppress no more."
Notice how this Scripture mentions "the fatherless and he oppressed" -- remember that in Isaiah 58 (vs. 6-8, 10) the Lord told the people that He wanted them to give to those in need, to put them first and themselves last. It is also interesting that this Scriptures says that God will hear the "desire of the humble." So we see that humbling ourselves before God is what He delights in; and because we delight in that which He also delights, He gives us our hearts desires. 1 Peter 5:5-7 states, "...'God resists the proud, But gives grace to the humble.' Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time, casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you." If He cares for us, I believe that implies that He will not only take our burdens, but that He will also give us our heart's desire -- He will take care of everything. Notice that in Psalm 10:3 it says, "For the wicked boasts of his heart's desire; He blesses the greedy and renounces the LORD." But then it says (vs 4), "The wicked in his proud countenance does not seek God; God is in none of his thoughts." So we see that the humble seek God -- meditating on His Word continually -- and they receive their hearts desires. Why? Because they are living no longer for themselves, "but by faith in the Son of God, who loved [us] and gave Himself for [us]." (Gal 2:20)
Isaiah 58:13-14 "If you turn away your foot from the Sabbath, From doing your pleasure on My holy day, And call the Sabbath a delight, The holy day of the LORD honorable, And shall honor Him, not doing your own ways, Nor finding your own pleasure, Nor speaking your own words, Then you shall delight yourself in the LORD; And I will cause you to ride on the high hills of the earth, And feed you with the heritage of Jacob your father. The mouth of the LORD has spoken."
It's just as Psalm 37:4 says, "Delight yourself also in the LORD, And He shall give you the desires of your heart."