“Humble yourselves in the presence of the Lord, and He will exalt you” (James 4:10).
Satan has always had a strong cache of artillery against the human flesh because he has always known our weakness as human beings. His strategy calls for an attack on our weakest points and pride is his strongest temptation to attack our souls. His sin of pride began his own demise and his aggravation from God’s judgment motivated his assault on mankind. He went right to work on God’s creation by tempting them with pride: “For God knows that in the day you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil” (Genesis 3:5). Flesh is tragically tempted by desire for self.
Satan’s attack on our souls is always in opposition to God’s word. His desire is to plant doubt in us because doubt is the opposite of faith. Faith is what God uses to credit righteousness in the accounts of His followers: “But to the one who does not work, but believes in Him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is credited as righteousness” (Romans 4:5). Paul’s inspired point here is that faith depends on God’s power to save and never relies on human abilities to earn salvation. This is the faith that pleases God.
Solomon wrote, “Pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before stumbling” (Proverbs 16:18). Many times and in many ways we allow pride to take us away from faith. We can become prideful people when we believe our own abilities are the reason we achieve great things in life. We can become prideful people when we think we are better than others. We can become prideful people when we think we know how to be saved without going to God for His instructions. Whenever we put man’s “I think so” before God’s “I say so” we become prideful people headed for a fall. God is our strength and without His power we are mere mortals awaiting defeat. The challenges we face as followers of Christ will require us to humble ourselves and ask for strength. We must look to the authors of the Bible and see how humility led them to victory: “I can do all things through Him who strengthens me” (Philippians 4:13).
God is our Father Who wants the best for us. And not only does He want the best for us, He is working things out to make that happen (Romans 8:28). We must make sure we stay on our feet walking in the way of righteousness and striving to reach the goal God has set before us. If we will continue to be humble before God and receive His counsel He will continue to provide the strength we need to be victorious in life and even in death.
— Cub Orcutt