Advent Study – DAY 13
Kingdoms of Pride
the “World of Pride”!
Satan and God are at war for “your” SOUL: If you choose to follow Jesus, the spiritual battles in your life “are on”. It is often said that “If Satan is not fighting with you, you are already his.” Every follower of Jesus is under attack in some area of their life – and all the time. Pride-battles are the most difficult to recognize and win. Jeremiah observed that “The human heart is the most deceitful of all things, and desperately wicked. Who really knows how bad it is?” (17:9 NLT). Jesus warned “For false messiahs and false prophets will rise up and perform great signs and wonders so as to deceive, if possible, even God’s chosen ones.” (Matthew 24:24 NLT). Many believe that the battle of Adam and Eve with the serpent in the Garden of Eden was a “battle of pride” – who would be God? That is, who would make the rules? On the Advent Card, bulb “13”, Kingdoms of Pride, these battles must be won with the “disciplines” of “Obedience”. Pride is the third major area of temptations and spiritual warfare Jesus showed us how to win.
Jesus’ Message of HOPE
- “Next the devil took him to the peak of a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. ‘I will give it all to you,’ he said, ‘if you will kneel down and worship me.’ ‘Get out of here, Satan,’ Jesus told him. ‘For the Scriptures say, “You must worship the Lord your God and serve only him.”’ Then the devil went away, and angels came and took care of Jesus.” Matthew 4:8-11 NLT
Conquering PRIDE TEMPTATIONS -
Winning in “Confrontation” Warfare:
Direct Attacks: Satan was desperate. This time he chose to challenge Jesus’ person, role, and calling through challenging Jesus’ pride. Remember, pride in and of itself is a healthy quality of God’s IMAGE. So this is where Satan thought Jesus might be vulnerable while he was “human”. There were at least three attacks he tried. Most pride battles are temptations of thought.
- Pride temptation/thought 1: Who will get credit for creation? Jesus knew that as God’s son, he was present and active in creation with the Father and His Holy Spirit. This attempt failed because Jesus had centered his pride on the TRUTH.
- Pride temptation/thought 2: Who will be chosen as his God? Jesus would worship only the TRUE Creator. A foolish attack, but while a human, did Satan really think Jesus would trade the Father’s authority for Satan’s? Not a chance – his pride was not in himself, but the Father. Yet the lies and assaults continued to hurl.
- Pride temptation/thought 3: Who defines TRUTH? Satan talked as if the kingdoms of the world were eternal – Jesus knew the TRUTH – they will all end.
- Pride temptation/thought 3 - Again: Who defines TRUTH? Satan lied about his possession of earthly kingdoms – how could he give Jesus all the kingdoms when he did not own them but for a while?
Jesus hurled back a frontal assault – “Get out of here, Satan, …” Just as powerfully, he again pulled his “trump card of TRUTH”, and declared to the father of lies, “For the Scriptures say, ‘You must worship the Lord your God and serve only him.’” This pride battle was won! Jesus had defended the Father’s glory through his “discipline of obedience”. Satan immediately left, and angels came to help Jesus “Praise” and ‘Enjoy” the victory of HOPE. Bulbs “19-25” will focus on these amazing benefits of H.O.P.E. Jesus won battle three, but he knew more would come.
Jesus’ Secret to Temptations of Pride: Because God gave each soul the power of choosing who will be their God, Satan usually attacks this area head-on through pride. Even the religious are tempted to serve their own self and rules. He tries to tell us that surrendering to the Father is a sign of weakness or inadequacy – not so – it is a sign of wisdom. Making our own rules, and controlling our lives by ourselves, are pride issues. Satan works directly on our thought life with his lies, confronting God’s TRUTHS. Note the following terrain Satan creates for the battlefield of pride:
- God’s TRUTH Attacked: Your value to God is already established at your birth. TRUTH Defended: You will always be precious to Him.
- God’s TRUTH Attacked: Your love (heart) is more important to God than any reputation or achievement you can gain. TRUTH Defended: Your loving relationship is all He wants from you.
- God’s TRUTH Attacked: God never removes your choices to “Hook-Up” or “Obey”. TRUTH Defended: Your acceptance is guaranteed if you accept Him. Others do not get credit for your choices, so their opinions do not matter.
- God’s TRUTH Attacked: It is healthy pride to “Enjoy” the benefits of God’s Kingdom. TRUTH Defended: God does not need credit for your successes. He designed you to be successful. He is pleased with good choices and most often rewards them. You get credit for your choices.
- God’s TRUTH Attacked: The enemies of God are your enemies. TRUTH Defended: Voices are many, often subtle, sometimes confusing, but always intent on capturing your soul. .
- God’s TRUTH Attacked: Often the most brutal attacks come from those who profess to know God. TRUTH Defended: Satan will use the religious to deceive wherever he can.
The secret to Jesus’ victory over the battle of pride was his preparation – he knew the TRUTH was found in God’s Word and his victory was in obedience. True friends rejoice in disciplined obedience. Harmful friends rejoice in your failures – they discard you when you become like them. It seems harsh to say, but whenever anyone hides or opposes Truth, they are actually joining forces with Satan! The Word of TRUTH was Jesus’ secret to surviving direct attacks of pride, and it can be ours as well.
Read Jesus’ and Other’s Messages of HOPE over Pride:
Jesus’ and Other’s
Messages of HOPE over “Pride”:
- Matthew 16:6 6 “’Watch out!’ Jesus warned them. ‘Beware of the yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees.’”
- 1 John 2:16 (NKJV) “For all that is in the world--the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life--is not of the Father but is of the world.”
- 1 John 4:1 (NKJV) “Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world.”
- 1 John 4:5 (NKJV) “They are of the world. Therefore they speak as of the world, and the world hears them.”
- Proverbs 30:12 (NKJV) “There is a generation that is pure in its own eyes, Yet is not washed from its filthiness.”
All Of My Heart
1 Thessalonians 5:15-18
(Wrong for Wrong)
Get Behind Me Satan
Perfect Will (PG rated)
Hope of the World
Get Away from Me Satan
Temptations of Jesus - Pleasure, Power, Pride
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