"Suppose ye that I am come to give peace on earth? I tell you, Nay; but rather division: For from henceforth there shall be five in one house divided, three against two, and two against three."
Luke 12:51-52
The Biblical Understanding of Pride
Christopher J. E. Johnson
Published: Oct 27, 2017
Updated: Oct 31, 2017

The phrase "I'm so proud of you," is very commonly used, but most of us don't stop to consider what the Bible says about it. Our society typically views a parent being proud of their child as "good," but in fact, the Bible teaches us that is evil. In this teaching, we'll go over the Biblical details of pride, and why such simple phrases can blind people and lead them to the wide gates of hell.

Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.
-Matthew 7:13-14

pride (n): a high opinion of one's own superiority in talents, beauty, wealth, accomplishments, rank or elevation in office
(See 'pride', American Dictionary of the English Language, Noah Webster, 1828, retrieved Oct 17, 2017 [webstersdictionary1828.com])

Thus, to be prideful is to elevate oneself above others in rank, station, skill, knowledge, beauty, wealth, wisdom, achievements, etc. Sadly, most Americans believe they are not prideful, but pride is one of the most common sins in American culture, and that pride leads them along the broad path to hell.

In 2014, a Gallup poll was taken in which they asked residents of each individual State in the U.S. if they thought they lived in the "best" state. The poll was called, "Which U.S. states have the most pride?" They were specifically asked if "their state was the very best or one of the best places to live."
(See Jolie Lee, "Which U.S. states have the most pride?" USA Today, Apr 25, 2014, retrieved Oct 17, 2017, [usatoday.com/story/news/nation-now/2014/04/25/state-pride-gallup-montana-alaska/8140879])

Putting aside the fact that there is no definition of what "the best" means, the news article concludes that the "best places to live" are the ones who voted themselves to be the best, but in reality, all this poll showed is which states are the most sinful in pride. In fact, the states with lower percentages could be considered more humble than those with higher percentages.

The Bible tells those who are born again that we ought not to think of ourselves better than others:

Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves.
-Philippians 2:3

Although this is referring only to those who are born again within Christ's church, it still remains that a prideful spirit considers himself to be better than others. Of course, if you ask the typical American if he thinks he's better than everyone else, you will often hear him speak supposedly "humble" words, yet, if you point out their wicked deeds, you'll see them fight with strife and/or scoff at the truth, which demonstrates that they really do think incredibly highly of themselves, and thus, they are found to be liars.

vainglory (n): excited by one's own performances; empty pride
(See 'vainglory', American Dictionary of the English Language, Noah Webster, 1828, retrieved Oct 19, 2017 [webstersdictionary1828.com])

Despsite the individual reasonings of each participant in the above poll, America as a whole is incredibly prideful, which is why the song Proud To Be An American was so popular back in the 1990s. (It fell out of popularity for a while because it was so overplayed, but it's still popular.) Even the first American president, George Washington, encouraged Americans to maintain a prideful heart:
"Citizens by birth or choice of a common country, that country has a right to concentrate your affections. The name of American, which belongs to you in your national capacity, must always exalt the just pride of patriotism more than any appellation derived from local discriminations."
-George Washington, quoted by James K. Polk, Messages and Papers of the Presidents, Wildside Press, 2009, p. 2460, ISBN: 9781434451552

However, the Bible says:

Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall.
-Proverbs 16:18

haughty (adj): proud and disdainful [i.e. to deem others worthless or unworthy of notice]; having a high opinion of one's self
(See 'haughty', American Dictionary of the English Language, Noah Webster, 1828, retrieved Oct 17, 2017 [webstersdictionary1828.com])

It does not matter if someone thinks being proud is good; the Lord God has told us that is what preceedes a destructive fall. Americans think so highly of themselves, and it's often not for any logical reason; rather, they just say "America is the greatest nation in the world" because they have been taught by their school, church, family, and the media to preach and believe it.

Often, Americans look around them at how much stuff they have, how much technology, how much food, and think that through their acquisition of material goods, they have become superior to everyone else, but the Lord Jesus Christ has said:

Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked:
-Revelation 3:17

Don't misunderstand; Christ is not saying they have lost their eyesight, nor is He saying they don't have clothes or money. He's saying in their spirits, hearts, and minds, they are the most lowly, wretched creatures, but because they have lots of material things, they think nothing is wrong with them; their wealth allows them to fulfill the lusts of their flesh which also helps distract them from the truth. (In that sense, you could even say that true humility is acknowledging the truth, and pride is a denial of the truth.)

Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, that ye should obey it in the lusts thereof.
-Romans 6:12

This is also why Christ said that it was extremely difficult for rich men to enter the God's Kingdom:

And again I say unto you, It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God.
-Matthew 19:24

Wealth brings instant fulfillment of the lusts of the flesh. All things the flesh desires can be purchased with money.

A feast is made for laughter, and wine maketh merry: but money answereth all things.
-Ecclesiastes 10:19

With wealth comes pride, and that pride blinds a man; preventing him from acknowledging the truth. Not only does it blind him to the truth, but the Lord God will not give His saving grace those who are prideful in their hearts:

But he giveth more grace. Wherefore he saith, God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble.
-James 4:6

This is why repentance (i.e. grief and godly sorrow of wrongdoing) is so important; it is the sign that the heart has been humbled before God, and it is through that humility that a man's soul can be saved. Although, we should also remember that when there is repentance towards men without repentance towards the Christian God of the Bible, there is no salvation.
(Read "Is Repentance Part of Salvation?" here at creationliberty.com for more details.)

Without humility, a man cannot be saved because pride is the opposite of humility, and through pride, men end up in hell. The Bible also tells us that God does not use the prideful of heart for His purposes:

For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called: But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty; And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are: That no flesh should glory in his presence.
-1 Corinthians 1:26-29

Notice first that it says "wise men after the flesh," meaning what the world considers to be "wise" is not true wisdom; neither what the world calls "noble" is noble, nor is what the world calls "might" actually mighty. The foolish, weak, and base (i.e. lowly, those who the world considers useless) are the ones God chooses to give His wisdom, understanding, and discernment to, and will use them to preach His Word so that no one will glory of themselves.

glory (v): to boast or be proud of
(See 'glory', American Dictionary of the English Language, Noah Webster, 1828, retrieved Oct 19, 2017 [webstersdictionary1828.com])

The first chapter of first Corinthians continues to say:

But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption: That, according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord.
-1 Corinthians 1:30-31

There is only one area where pride and boasting are accepted with God, and that is when we have pride in, and boast of, having the Lord Jesus Christ being the salvation of our souls, and the fear of God as the source of wisdom and understanding. Sadly, I've seen many false converts teach this too, meaning that they are boasting of a false god and false christ that they worship, being proud in a false gospel.
(Read "False Converts & Eternal Security" here at creationliberty.com for more details.)

For all those things hath mine hand made, and all those things have been, saith the LORD: but to this man will I look, even to him that is poor and of a contrite spirit, and trembleth at my word.
-Isaiah 66:2

For example, the new-age false doctrines taught in the Charismatic church buildings. They teach that they should boast of the Lord Jesus Christ, which if we are born again, is good to do, but the Charismatics are worshipping an idol, a false christ, because they reject the doctrines of Scripture, teaching the traditions of men, and have no understanding of the Word of God; it's a misplaced pride, where they believe they are poor and contrite, but they seek first the pleasures of the flesh.

poor (adj): having little; destitute of value, worth, or importance
contrite (adj): worn, bruised, broken, humbled, sincerely affected by a sense of guilt
(See 'poor' & 'contrite', American Dictionary of the English Language, Noah Webster, 1828, retrieved Oct 19, 2017 [webstersdictionary1828.com])

For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.
-2 Timothy 4:3-4

The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: a good understanding have all they that do his commandments: his praise endureth for ever.
-Psalm 111:10

The Lord God had sought to pour out His wrath upon His children in Israel in 2 Chronicles, but when Hezekiah and all of Jerusalem humbled themselves away from their pride, He showed them mercy:

But Hezekiah rendered not again according to the benefit done unto him; for his heart was lifted up: therefore there was wrath upon him, and upon Judah and Jerusalem. Notwithstanding Hezekiah humbled himself for the pride of his heart, both he and the inhabitants of Jerusalem, so that the wrath of the LORD came not upon them in the days of Hezekiah.
-2 Chronicles 32:25-26

There are very many verses in the Bible that condemn the prideful (or proud) of heart:

For the wicked boasteth of his heart's desire, and blesseth the covetous, [i.e. the aforementioned rich men] whom the LORD abhorreth. The wicked, through the pride of his countenance, will not seek after God: God is not in all his thoughts.
-Psalm 10:3-4

These six things doth the LORD hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him: A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood,
-Proverbs 6:16-17

For the sin of their mouth and the words of their lips let them even be taken in their pride: and for cursing and lying which they speak.
-Psalm 59:12

For I was envious at the foolish, when I saw the prosperity of the wicked... They are not in trouble as other men; neither are they plagued like other men. Therefore pride compasseth them about as a chain; violence covereth them as a garment.
-Psalm 73:3-6

When pride cometh, then cometh shame: but with the lowly is wisdom.
-Proverbs 11:2

Whoso privily slandereth his neighbour, him will I cut off: him that hath an high look and a proud heart will not I suffer.
-Psalm 101:5

Only by pride cometh contention: but with the well advised is wisdom.
Proverbs 13:10

Thou hast rebuked the proud that are cursed, which do err from thy commandments.
-Psalm 119:21

In the mouth of the foolish is a rod of pride: but the lips of the wise shall preserve them.
-Proverbs 14:3

Though the LORD be high, yet hath he respect unto the lowly: but the proud he knoweth afar off.
-Psalm 138:6

It's very easy to see how the Bible describes pride after reading these verses. The prideful of heart does not keep God in his thoughts. The prideful of heart are liars. God hates the prideful heart, and He does not tolerate it. The prideful heart errs from the commandments of God. The prideful of heart seek material pleasures of the world and will become violent. Pride brings shame, contention, and foolish words. Those with prideful hearts are nowhere close to God. Thus, God sought to destroy the pride of His people because they turned terribly wicked once pride was lifted up in their hearts.

Thus saith the LORD, After this manner will I mar the pride of Judah, and the great pride of Jerusalem. This evil people, which refuse to hear my words, which walk in the imagination of their heart, and walk after other gods, to serve them, and to worship them, shall even be as this girdle, which is good for nothing.
-Jeremiah 13:9-10

The Moabites, the descendents of Lot, who caused the nation of Israel of a lot of problems, were lifted up in their pride:

We have heard the pride of Moab, (he is exceeding proud) his loftiness, and his arrogancy, and his pride, and the haughtiness of his heart.
-Jeremiah 48:29

lofty (adj): proud, elevated in high places
(See 'lofty', American Dictionary of the English Language, Noah Webster, 1828, retrieved Oct 26, 2017, [webstersdictionary1828.com])

In order for a man of much pride to be humbled, it takes extreme situations, like disease and death, to bring them low. In order for God to bring Nebuchadnezzar (king of Babylon) low and humble his heart, he had to make him live as cattle, eating grass like an ox, for a long period of time.

But when his heart was lifted up, and his mind hardened in pride, he was deposed from his kingly throne, and they took his glory from him: And he was driven from the sons of men; and his heart was made like the beasts, and his dwelling was with the wild asses: they fed him with grass like oxen, and his body was wet with the dew of heaven; till he knew that the most high God ruled in the kingdom of men, and that he appointeth over it whomsoever he will.
-Daniel 5:20-21

Just look at the pride of the Jewish people; because of the blindness of their pride, the Jews crucified the Lamb of God. Because of their pride, the Jews would not see nor hear the truth, and so Christ brought His Gospel to the Gentiles. Even today, it is very difficult to preach the truth of Christ to the Jewish people because of their pride, and God has allowed them to be blinded, which is why Christ spoke in parables:

And the disciples came, and said unto him, Why speakest thou unto them in parables? He answered and said unto them, Because it is given unto you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it is not given. For whosoever hath, to him shall be given, and he shall have more abundance: but whosoever hath not, from him shall be taken away even that he hath. Therefore speak I to them in parables: because they seeing see not; and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand. And in them is fulfilled the prophecy of Esaias, which saith, By hearing ye shall hear, and shall not understand; and seeing ye shall see, and shall not perceive: For this people's heart is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes they have closed; lest at any time they should see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and should understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them.
-Matthew 13:10-15

Like Jews today, there are many church-goers (i.e. false converts who call themselves "Christians") who are lifted up in their pride, and blinded to what's going on around them. They take pride in their church buildings, homes, families, schools, titles, and an assortment of other works, but that prideful heart is what God hates.

For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders, Thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness: All these evil things come from within, and defile the man.
-Mark 7:21-23

For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.
-1 John 2:16

Every one that is proud in heart is an abomination to the LORD: though hand join in hand, he shall not be unpunished.
-Proverbs 16:5

An high look, and a proud heart, and the plowing of the wicked, is sin.
-Proverbs 21:4

And yet, people commonly walk around saying "I'm so proud of *insert name*," or saying "I'm proud to be a citizen of *insert country*. It's sad that many will speak these things, claim not to be prideful of heart, and some of those will accuse me (and have accused me) of not being able to see what's in their hearts because, as they'll claim, only God can see the heart, but Christ told us:

But those things which proceed out of the mouth come forth from the heart; and they defile the man.
-Matthew 15:18

So yes, those of us born again with the Spirit of God for discernment, through study of His Word (Heb 5:14), can see what is in someone's heart to a certain degree by judging what comes out of their mouths. Simply put, when prideful words come out of a man's mouth (i.e. he lifts himself up and gives himself station above others), those words are coming from a prideful heart.

Jeremiah preached the Word of God to Jerusalem and made it very simple for them to understand:

Hear ye, and give ear; be not proud: for the LORD hath spoken.
-Jeremiah 13:15

I've had a couple Christians write me and say that there were examples of pride that are good in Scripture, but their claim was in error. For example, Psalm 31 says:

O love the LORD, all ye his saints: for the LORD preserveth the faithful, and plentifully rewardeth the proud doer.
-Psalm 31:23

This is a primary example of what I call "cherry-picking" Scripture, meaning that someone is looking up a single verse without reading the context. A few verses earlier, King David defines what he's talking about:

Let me not be ashamed, O LORD; for I have called upon thee: let the wicked be ashamed, and let them be silent in the grave. Let the lying lips be put to silence; which speak grievous things proudly and contemptuously against the righteous.
-Psalm 31:17-18

So the "proud doer" is the one who is has lying lips and holds the righteous in contempt, and for us to say that God blesses them for their wickedness would contradict the entire Bible. The word "reward" can be used in a positive AND a negative context, meaning that God rewards the righteous with good things, and He rewards the wicked with bad things; for example:

If I whet my glittering sword, and mine hand take hold on judgment; I will render vengeance to mine enemies, and will reward them that hate me.
-Deuteronomy 32:41

Alexander the coppersmith did me much evil: the Lord reward him according to his works:
-2 Timothy 4:14

And there shall be, like people, like priest: and I will punish them for their ways, and reward them their doings.
-Hosea 4:9

But these, as natural brute beasts, made to be taken and destroyed, speak evil of the things that they understand not; and shall utterly perish in their own corruption; And shall receive the reward of unrighteousness, as they that count it pleasure to riot in the day time. Spots they are and blemishes, sporting themselves with their own deceivings while they feast with you;
-2 Peter 2:12-13

The Lord God negatively rewards those who do wickedness. Thus, in Psalm 31:23, the Lord God rewards the "proud doer" with punishments in order to "preserve the faithful," meaning to protect the faithful from their wicked, prideful hearts.

One of the most common places I've seen prideful hearts are in the church buildings of America, more specifically in the pastors and elders of the church buildings. There are a number of times I've stood against the pastors and rebuked them for their wrongdoings, and many times I've received reactions of surprise and shock that I would dare question a pastor because, after all, most church-goers are so deep into the sin of respecting persons, they will worship anyone with a pastoral title.
(Read "Why Are Christians Respecting Persons?" here at creationliberty.com for more details.)

Blessed is that man that maketh the LORD his trust, and respecteth not the proud, nor such as turn aside to lies.
-Psalm 40:4

Prideful preachers have taught near-countless lies unto men, but in the context of pride, they have taught that men need not be ashamed of themselves or feel any guilt. When people are lifted up in their pride, they think they can do no wrong, causing them to feel no shame for the wicked things they do and say, which keeps them from repentance, because repentance requires a lowly spirit of humility in which we acknowledge our wrongdoings before the Lord.

For example, Rick Warren, a wolf in disguise, teaches that shame comes from the devil:
"Satan uses hurt and he uses pain in your life to deceive you... if he can get you angry, guilty, or ashamed, he knows you're going to miss your true identity... All shame comes from Satan, it doesn't come from God."
-Rick Warren, "Learning My True Identity In Christ," Saddleback Church, Oct 13, 2014, retrieved Jan 13, 2016, [youtube.com/watch?v=AolN3_JldmI]; Read "Wolves in Costume: Rick Warren" here at creationliberty.com for more details.

The Bible teaches us that God gives men shame, to acknowledge the truth of the guilt. The Bible also teaches us that the prideful of heart, like Rick Warren and his followers, should be ashamed of themselves.

Let the proud be ashamed; for they dealt perversely with me without a cause: but I will meditate in thy precepts.
-Psalm 119:78

But thou hast saved us from our enemies, and hast put them to shame that hated us.
-Psalm 44:7

But thou hast cast off, and put us to shame; and goest not forth with our armies.
-Psalm 44:9

The days of his youth hast thou shortened: thou hast covered him with shame. Selah.
-Psalm 89:45

New-ager and false convert Kelly Balarie also blasphemes God by saying the shame He puts upon men is of the devil:
"We canít let shame knock us down. We canít let shame win. Because, you better bet it will try to tell us that we arenít good, holy or lovable. Shame will come to trap us under the bricks, holding us down so that we canít accomplish Godís purposes. Shame is one of the devilís best tools to chisel away at our faith walk."
-Kelly Balarie, "Shame in the Bible," A Cheerleader of Faith & Friends, Nov 11, 2014, retrieved Oct 25, 2017, [purposefulfaith.com/shame-in-the-bible]

First of all, it is important to address what the Bible says about whether or not men are "good, holy or lovable."

As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God. They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one.
-Romans 3:10-12

There is none righteous and good but Christ, and for this woman to speak in her ignorance that she is a "good and holy person" simply shows that she glories in her shame, or in other words, she boasts of her perceived "goodness" when she ought to be ashamed of herself. It is her prideful heart that lifts herself up above the shame she ought to know.

(For many walk, of whom I have told you often, and now tell you even weeping, that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ: Whose end is destruction, whose God is their belly, and whose glory is in their shame, who mind earthly things.)
-Philippians 3;18-19

Zephaniah delivered God's Word to the Jews and explained to them very clearly that it is the wicked men of iniquity, the unjust, who do not acknowledge the shame of what they say and do:

The just LORD is in the midst thereof; he will not do iniquity: every morning doth he bring his judgment to light, he faileth not; but the unjust knoweth no shame.
-Zephaniah 3:5

We ought not be ashamed of our testimony of the Lord Jesus Christ (2Ti 1:8), nor should we be ashamed of preaching the Word of God when we have studied to rightly divide His Word (2Ti 2:15), but concerning shame for our deeds, we ought to take it into consideration.

Hearken to me, ye that follow after righteousness, ye that seek the LORD: look unto the rock whence ye are hewn, and to the hole of the pit whence ye are digged.
-Isaiah 51:1

Wherefore let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall.
-1 Corinthians 10:12

We ought to approach the Lord Jesus Christ in humility, while at the same time stand with confidence in His Word. However, when we stand with confidence in the Word of God, it is not uncommon to be falsely accused of being "prideful," and I know this from a lot of first-hand experience.

For example, in 1 Samuel 17, David's father sent him to bring food to his brothers, and when he arrived, he saw Goliath the Philistine mocking the Lord God openly. David questioned why no one was doing anything about this man to shut his mouth for defying the army which God had appointed, and then his oldest brother falsely accused him of being prideful:

And Eliab his eldest brother heard when he spake unto the men; and Eliab's anger was kindled against David, and he said, Why camest thou down hither? and with whom hast thou left those few sheep in the wilderness? I know thy pride, and the naughtiness of thine heart; for thou art come down that thou mightest see the battle.
-1 Samuel 17:28

David was obeying his father's commandment to deliver food, and although David may have desired to see the battle, that was not his reason for coming. Thus, he was falsely accused of being prideful.

This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God;
-2 Timothy 3:1-4

highminded (adj): proud, arrogant
heady (adj): to rush forward in an enterprise without thought or deliberation; hurried on by will or passion
(See 'heady' & 'high-minded', American Dictionary of the English Language, Noah Webster, 1828, retrieved Oct 26, 2017, [webstersdictionary1828.com])

False accusations of pride or arrogance comes out of people most often when they're being rebuked or corrected. This happens because they react emotionally to rebuke rather than reasonably, and the reason that emotion pours out of them so rapidly is because they're prideful of heart, but instead of confessing that pride, they immediately accuse the one who is doing the rebuking, so they will not have to judge themselves.

For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged. But when we are judged, we are chastened of the Lord, that we should not be condemned with the world.
-1 Corinthians 11:31-32
(Read "Unbiblical Cop-Outs: Don't Judge Me!" here at creationliberty.com for more details.)

In the case of David and his brothers, David's questioning of why no one would face Goliath while he stood before them mocking the Lord God was not just a question, but a rebuke. The fact that it came from the younger sibling angered them, and because of the pride of their positions as soldiers, and because of their pride for being the elder over him, Eliab falsely accused David of pride, the very thing Eliab and his brothers were guilty of doing.

In letters, when I rebuke someone for teaching error, believing in false doctrine, or more commonly for having wickedness in their heart, I am often falsely accused of being "arrogant."

arrogant (adj): assuming; giving one's self an undue degree of importance; haughty, conceited
(See 'arrogance', American Dictionary of the English Language, Noah Webster, 1828, retrieved Oct 26, 2017, [webstersdictionary1828.com])

The only difference I've seen between the words "pride" and "arrogance" is the word "assumption." Thus, arrogance is a version of pride that is based on assumptions instead of facts. Sadly, I have been most often accused of being "arrogant," even when I provide Scripture and full documented references for everything I teach, while the person who accuses me has no Scripture or documented facts to back up their claims. (The Bible calls that hypocritical judgment.)

For example, one of the articles I released in which I was most commonly accused of arrogance was, "Wolves in Costume: Amy Grant," which was about the music artist Amy Grant, exposing her false beliefs and deception in her music. (i.e. Amy Grant is not a Christian.) Amy Grant has a lot of emotionally-attached followers because of her "feel-good" songs, but when I provided direct quotations from her, along with documentation and Scripture to prove she was not of Christ, I got accused of arrogance (i.e. assumption) by those who ASSUME (via their feelings) she was a Christian without doing any research. In short, I provided Scripture and referenced quotations, and they came to me in arrogance without any Scripture or referenced quotations, and accused me of being "arrogant."

And why beholdest thou the mote [i.e. the splinter of wood] that is in thy brother's eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye? Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold, a beam is in thine own eye? Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother's eye.
-Matthew 7:3-5

There is a slightly humorous side to this teaching on pride. This information is obviously vital to those who are prideful of heart to understand it and repent, but if I were to send a teaching called "The Biblical Understanding of Pride" to a person prideful of heart, they would never read it, and would likely be furious that I sent it to them in the first place, accusing me of being a "hypocrite" because the first thing they do is accuse me of being prideful for daring to point out their error. (It's what is commonly known as a "Catch-22," or a situation in which the solution triggers the problem.)

It is for this reason that, for those you who are long-time listeners in our ministry, you may have noticed that I rarely, if ever, accuse anyone of being prideful. It's not that I don't see pridefulness in people all the time; I do, but I also see it in myself, which is why I can recognize it so easily in others. Just about every week, before beginning our audio teachings, you will notice that I pray the Lord Jesus Christ would take the pride from our hearts so we can understand the truth of His Word, and I don't pray that in vanity because I realize it is pride that blinds us to the truth, and we need to be humbled to live perfectly as Christ commands us.

Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy. But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you... Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.
-Matthew 5:43-48

If I tell a man he's being prideful, that typically only ignites his pride. That is why you'll notice that Jesus Christ taught about the danger of the prideful heart, but He never directly accused an individual of being prideful. There is really no need to individually accuse because, to those who have the Biblical understanding about pride, the prideful hearts can be seen by the words that proceed out of their mouths.

And he saith unto them, Are ye so without understanding also? Do ye not perceive, that whatsoever thing from without entereth into the man, it cannot defile him; Because it entereth not into his heart, but into the belly, and goeth out into the draught, purging all meats? And he said, That which cometh out of the man, that defileth the man. For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders, Thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness: All these evil things come from within, and defile the man.
-Mark 7:18-23

But those things which proceed out of the mouth come forth from the heart; and they defile the man.
-Matthew 15:18

I have seen wicked things being spoken of and supported by those claiming to be of Christ, and I have rebuked them for that, only to have them turn around and say, "You can't judge! You don't know the hearts of men; only God does!" That's true, the Lord God does know the hearts of men, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who is God the Father, told us that we can know what's in a man's heart by the words that he speaks.

When a man speaks with vile and filthy words, we know that his heart is vile and filthy. When he tells jokes about fornication and adultery, we know that he has a heart of fornication and adultery. When he lies, we know he has a lying heart. And when he reacts to Biblical rebuke and correction with false accusations of pride and arrogance, we know he has a prideful and arrogant heart.

Railing accusation is another way we can see the prideful heart of men.

rail (v): to speak accusations of fault in severe language, to use prideful language, to attempt to find some fault or blame in contempt rather than truth
(See 'rail', American Dictionary of the English Language, Noah Webster, 1828, retrieved Oct 26, 2017, [webstersdictionary1828.com])

A railer is a prideful person who uses accusations meant to influence an audience with false and/or contentious words. In case you may not understand the connection, I'll give a very common example: Those of you who have ever tried to tell a church-goer the truth about the pagan witchcraft celebration of Christmas have probably experienced what it's like to talk to a railer.
(Read "Christmas: The Rejection of Jesus" here at creationliberty.com for more details.)

As soon as you try to tell them the truth, railing accusation comes out of their mouth, condemning you as being a "Pharisee" or a "legalist" or "unloving" or "contentious," or an assortment of other false accusations and insults. This is the prideful heart of a man trying to protect himself from being corrected in humility; the prideful heart refuses to be humbled.

Whoso keepeth his mouth and his tongue keepeth his soul from troubles. Proud and haughty scorner is his name, who dealeth in proud wrath.
-Proverbs 21:23-24

Another example is the so-called "Christian" rock music crowd; they turn into furious rage monsters when I expose the wickedness of their songs, resulting in a lot of railing accusation flowing out of their mouths. A false convert "Christian" rocker once wrote me and called me shameful, thick, biased, cherry-picker, illogical, ridiculous, tripe, liar, traditionalist, condemner of guiltless, ignorant of Scripture, Pharisee, contemptible, blind, ignorant of joy of the Lord, ignorant of grace, coward, self-righteous, and much more—all within just his FIRST letter. (He got more angry when I pointed out his guilt of railing.)
(Read "What's Wrong With Christian Rock?" here at creationliberty.com for more details.)

Finally, be ye all of one mind, having compassion one of another, love as brethren, be pitiful, be courteous: Not rendering [to pay back] evil for evil, or railing for railing: but contrariwise blessing; knowing that ye are thereunto called, that ye should inherit a blessing. For he that will love life, and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil, and his lips that they speak no guile:
-1 Peter 3:8-10

The Bible instructs all of us born again in Christ that if we speak with anyone who calls himself a "Christian," and he is a railer who will not repent of his words, that we are sanctify ourselves (i.e. set ourselves apart) from that person. More specifically, if he claims to be of Christ, he is to be kicked out of the church:

But now I have written unto you not to keep company, if any man that is called a brother be a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolater, or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner; with such an one no not to eat... Therefore put away from among yourselves that wicked person.
-1 Corinthians 5:11-13

Remember that we already quoted the Scripture that clearly states our Lord God will not give His grace to the proud of heart. He only gives His grace to the humble, but He resists the proud. The railer is prideful of heart, and because his pride is the source of his railing, that's why we "put him away from among us," meaning that he is a false convert whose pride prevents his salvation, and therefore, they love little.

Wherefore I say unto thee, Her sins, which are many, are forgiven; for she loved much: but to whom little is forgiven, the same loveth little.
-Luke 7:47

If you have ever seen a preacher yell, rant, and rave from the pulpit, cussing and yelling at people, you are looking at a contentious railer. Such men are deceivers and false converts who are not of Christ, and because of their pride, they make their followers two fold the child of hell than themselves. (e.g. Steven Anderson is a good example of the kind of wolf in disguise who rails from the pulpit.)

(This is a short video showing what a railing preacher looks like.
Notice particularly the prideful heart of Steven Anderson and the lack of humility.

Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye compass sea and land to make one proselyte [i.e. convert to his religion], and when he is made, ye make him twofold more the child of hell than yourselves.
-Matthew 23:15

But woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye shut up the kingdom of heaven against men: for ye neither go in yourselves, neither suffer ye them that are entering to go in.
-Matthew 23:13

Whether in this life or the next, every man will be humbled before God.

The lofty looks of man shall be humbled, and the haughtiness of men shall be bowed down, and the LORD alone shall be exalted in that day.
-Isaiah 2:11

And the mean man shall be brought down, and the mighty man shall be humbled, and the eyes of the lofty shall be humbled:
-Isaiah 5:15

Behold, the Lord, the LORD of hosts, shall lop the bough with terror: and the high ones of stature shall be hewn [i.e. cut] down, and the haughty shall be humbled.
-Isaiah 10:33

I have sworn by myself, the word is gone out of my mouth in righteousness, and shall not return, That unto me every knee shall bow, every tongue shall swear.
-Isaiah 45:23

For it is written, As I live, saith the Lord, every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall confess to God.
-Romans 14:11

For the day of the LORD of hosts shall be upon every one that is proud and lofty, and upon every one that is lifted up; and he shall be brought low:
-Isaiah 2:12

It is vital in our day that men understand that repentance is the process by which men are humbled to salvation. I say this to everyone: Shed your vain pride, be humbled, and repent to the Christian God of the Bible before it's too late.
(Read "Is Repentance Part of Salvation?" here at creationliberty.com for more details.)

And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment: So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation.
-Hebrews 9:27-28

For those of you humbled, the poor and needy souls, I say to you that the Lord God provided and preserved His Word for you in the King James Bible. It is there as a shield of protection against the prideful and deceptive men of this world, and it is there as a light to guide you into truth and salvation.

Help, LORD; for the godly man ceaseth; for the faithful fail from among the children of men. They speak vanity every one with his neighbour: with flattering lips and with a double heart do they speak. The LORD shall cut off all flattering lips, and the tongue that speaketh proud things: Who have said, With our tongue will we prevail; our lips are our own: who is lord over us? For the oppression of the poor, for the sighing of the needy, now will I arise, saith the LORD; I will set him in safety from him that puffeth [i.e. pridefully lifting himself to high esteem] at him. The words of the LORD are pure words: as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times. Thou shalt keep them, O LORD, thou shalt preserve them from this generation for ever.
-Psalm 12:1-7

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