Sermon – Spiritual Pride and How to Fight it (Various passages) – Cornerstone Church Kingston
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Sermon 49 of 78

Spiritual Pride and How to Fight it

Various speakers, , 19 March 2022

Mike Tindall, the new pastor of Chessington Evangelical Church, spoke at our recent men's breakfast about Spiritual Pride and how to fight it.


Transcript (Auto-generated)

This transcript has been automatically generated, and therefore may not be 100% accurate.

Well, I want to start with a quotation, and you can guess what he's talking about. There is 1 vice of which no man in the world is free, which everyone in the world loathes when he sees it in someone else. And of which hardly any people ever imagined that they are guilty of themselves. There is no fault which makes a man more unpopular, and no fault which we are more unconscious of in ourselves. And the more we have of it in ourselves, the more we disdain it in others.

The vice I'm talking about is pride or self conceit, and the virtue opposite to it in Christian morals is called humility. According to Christian teachers, the essential vice, the utmost evil is pride. Unchastity, anger, greed, drunkenness, and all that are mere flea bites in comparison with pride. It was through pride that the devil became the devil. Pride leads to every other vice.

It is the complete antigod state of mind. And that was CS Lewis in his classic book, mere Christianity, he calls Pride the great sin and he argued that not only is pride the biggest sin in our lives, it's also the cause of many other sins. Do you do you believe that? Let me just do a thought experiment. Just think about anger for a moment.

When was the last time you were really angry with someone? I mean, furious. Maybe there is someone that you are angry with right now. But notice, you couldn't be that angry with them unless you felt somewhat superior to them. You're looking down on them because you think you would never behave as they have done.

How dare they? And if you saw them as essentially just like you, the anger would would actually fade away somewhat, but it is fed our anger is fed and nurtured by our sense of superiority. And the reason we feel superior is we're proud. Now Pete asked me to speak on a topic relevant to men. And the first thing that came to mind was pride, and I don't mean to imply that women aren't proud too, but it feels to me like a sin that many men particularly struggle with or it's the presence in their lives that acknowledged.

The Bible has a lot to say about pride and particularly in the book of Proverbs, which is a wisdom book. It's part of a group of books that we call wisdom literature, and they're all about how to live life well and wisely in God's world because God has made the world and made us And so there is a reality that exists that's preformed, if you like. And we come into the world, into God's reality And if we want to live well, we have to go with the grain that God has put in place. We want to live good lives don't we? We want to live a happy life and a good life.

And the Bible says that you need wisdom. For that. And as you go through life, you find that life is almost never black and white, is it? Very rarely clear cut decisions. Life is made up of countless situations, countless decisions that are not clear cut.

They're more they're murky, they're shades of gray. There's no rule book for most of the things that are going to happen to you this week. You can't look in the bible and find these rules, so we need wisdom to live well. And Proverbs is the Bible's gold mine of which This is the place to go to if you want to become a profound person, not a shallow person, but a person who who thinks deeply about life. You could mine proverbs for the rest of your life and never exhaust it.

Billy Graham at 1 stage in his ministry, read a chapter of Proverbs every day for a month and then went in rotation. It's a 31 chapter book. Just to dig and delve for this wisdom, Proverb speaks about all sorts of things. It speaks about our emotions. It speaks about our work.

It speaks a lot about our words in our speech and our listening. Speaks about our relationships, it's transformative. But if we wanna go really deep, I think we need to dig into this wisdom about pride. The roots of character because there's 1 thing that wrecks friendships, 1 thing that spoils our words, 1 thing that makes us unable to listen and receive advice that stirs up and boils our emotions and that is pride, the great sin. So I'm going to look at some texts you've got on your hand.

Sorry, I did about 40. I might have not have done enough, but hope you feel you could see them. These are picked from around Proverbs because Proverbs is not is arranged with looks like an anthology and you have to find different verses. Now look at the first verse on our sheet in the introduction there: Proverbs 16: The Lord detests all the proud of heart. Be sure of this, they will not go unpunished.

Now, do you see what this is saying? God doesn't just dislike the prayer of heart. He detest them. Pride makes us stink in God's nostrils, and it will certainly lead us to divine punishment. They will not go unpunished Ultimately, pride has got devastating consequences because God hates the proud, and he rejects our pride.

Why does he hate it so much? What does God got against pride? Because pride goes against the grain of everything that God is. Within, if you think about God, the Christian understanding of God is of the triune being, a unity of 3 persons, the father, the son, and the spirit, who have been in a marvelous relationship of love for all eternity, and they created the world and everything in it to share the fullness of their existence and love. God didn't create because he was lonely, didn't need us.

He creates to share the goodness and love. God is constantly self giving. And in that trinity, there's an eternal dance of love, of self giving, and other glorifying, that's who God is. And so if we little us are proud and committed to self glory, we're actually going against the very nature of God himself. We're going against reality.

And I don't want to be on a collision course with the almighty, do you? But we do Look at the next text, chapter 16 verse 18, pride goes before distraction, a haughty spirit, before a fall. And this has led to an old proverb in the English language, pride goeth before a fall. What is it saying? It doesn't say here that pride might lead you to destruction, it will.

Pride goes before destruction and a haughty spirit before a fall. So the Hebrew word behind the English word here is a very powerful word, it means to break or be broken. It's used when somebody gets a clay pot and it's smashed, smashed pottery, broken or fractured bones, doors that are smashed in, ships that go, of course, and hit the rocks and erect. You get the image of this word, destruction. It means being broken and shattered and wrecked.

That's what pride leads to in our lives. It leads to destruction, it goes, it leads to pain. In other words, what we're talking about here isn't a game, it is deadly serious. And by listening to Proverbs wisdom, you could save your life. But we do have a bit of a problem here, which is the bible nowhere gives us a single tidy definition of pride.

You can't look up a key verse that says, this is what pride is. You can do that with love, you can look up, and this is how we know what love is. But pride haven't quite got that same level of clarity, so we're going to do this digging. I've got 3 points, most of the materials in the first 1, and then the other 2 are quicker. What pride does, what pride is and what to do about it.

Firstly then, what pride does, and we're going to go through these text, 7 things that pride does. The first 4 of them are all in 1 chunk from Proverbs 30, verse 11, if you look on your sheet. There are those who curse their fathers and do not bless their mothers. Pride makes us turn on other people even our parents and curse them. Now, this person here wouldn't even give a blessing to their mom.

Do not bless their mothers? Why would someone act like this? Because pride makes us hate authority Some people violently resist any kind of authority over them, school teachers, police, traffic laws, traffic cameras, The boss, the government, the council, any kind of authority, people resist it, and hate it. But this spirit of anti authority is most clearly seen in our attitude towards our parents, who are the first authority figures in our lives, And if you have children, you'll know what I'm talking about. So let me ask firstly then, what is your relationship, brothers?

To authority, especially when it places limits on your freedom. How do you respond to that? When authority places limits on your freedom. Does something happen in your spirit that is coming out of pride? And I'm not talking about authority that's abusive or coercive or wrong.

I'm talking about good properly exercised authority that God has given in society. What's your attitude to authority? Verse 12, the next 1, those who are pure in their own eyes, and yet are not cleansed of their filth. They're pure in their own eyes, and yet are not cleansed of their filth. And this is a disgusting image, a more literal translation, this is from commentator called Tremper Longman, he says, there is a type of person who is clean in their own eyes, but they have not cleaned off their own excrement.

I mean, what an image? You're covered in poo. You don't know it. That's what it says. Pride stinks, and it stinks, and we don't know we smell.

What does it mean? Pride blinds us to our flaws, we can't see ourselves truly. We're unable to see what we're really like, because our pride distorts our vision. I don't know if you remember a TV show called Dragon's Dead. In this program, venture capital investors look for ideas to to put their money into for business and new businesses, and they'll they say, if they like the idea, they'll invest money in it and see it grow.

And there was a young woman entrepreneur who sought funding for a new product that she developed on Dragon. And this was a mirror that would hang in the window, the dressing sorry, it would hang in the dressing room of women's clothing shops. And this mirror was specially designed to make everyone look slimmer than they really were. Her proposal that it would make women buy more clothes, because they would go to the shop and think that makes me look slim. Because they look so good in the shop, and she reckoned she could sell thousands of these mirrors to every closed store in the country.

Now, she didn't get the funding because the dragons argued that when people got home and looked in the real mirror, they would be really angry and take the clothes back and potentially leading to complaints and litigation. But it was interesting. The only female judge on the panel asked if she could buy 1 of those mirrors for home. Now, our pride is like 1 of those mirrors. It gives us a distorted sense of who we are, and what we're really like.

It bends our self awareness out of shape. And then when we do see ourselves, all of a sudden, it's a horrible shock. They are pure in their own eyes, and yet they're not cleansed of their filth. Am I really like that? That's the second point.

Thirdly, verse 13, those whose eyes are ever so haughty whose glances are so disdainful. Literally, it says that the proud person's eyes are lifted up. You ever see somebody just looks down on you from a great height. The eyes are lifted up. They're kind of looking down on everyone.

They don't look a person in the eye and see them as equal. And equal is to be understood and listened to and connected with. They're always looking past you or through you to their own ambition. A really proud person is never really listening to you because a proud person sees other people as a means to an end. This makes any kind of real connection and empathy impossible.

You can't recognize when someone is hurt or unhappy and put yourself in their shoes because you're just too self absorbed. Their eyes are ever so haughty and their glances are disdainful. Next one:fourteen, whose teeth are swords and whose jaws are set with knives. What an image? If we just imagine someone whose teeth are swords and his jaws are set with knives.

I mean, it's a ghastly, it's like something out of a horror film. Someone opened their mouth, and there's all these knives there. This means they use their power of speech to harm and cut other people, their words wound, and they can kill. Pride makes our speech sharp and harsh and critical. And it makes our heart ruthless and unjust to other people.

We sit in judgment on other people, we look down on them, and then we cut them down size with our harsh words. Either to their face, and some people are really good at this, or more often behind their back. This verse emphasizes that we, pride makes us especially hard on those who are needy. Look at the rest of the verse, to devour the poor from the earth and the needy from among mankind. Those people who have less social power than you, How do you speak about them?

We were having a conversation on the table over breakfast about gypsies. We got a gypsy population in part of Chesington where I live, They have some land that's kind of between Chesington and the town called claygate. And it's really been interesting to me since we moved back to see how people talk about gypsies. Including Pete pointed out in church. Everybody talks and doesn't down.

Now, they may be guilty of some things. Who knows? But but it's really interesting that those people who are marginal, there's a complete blind spot in the mainstream community about gypsies and how we can talk about to be cutting down all the time. Anything that goes wrong in Ches somehow ends up being blamed on gypsies. You know?

Oh, yeah. The gypsies came and did that. Well, how do you know? But we tend to do this because we're proud. We're not like them, right?

We don't leave rubbish in the road. Do we have to speak about people like that? Now let's move on to the next verse. This probably isn't a surprise by now, but look at chapter 13 verse 10. Where there is strife, There is pride, but wisdom is found in those who take advice.

Pride stirs up strife between people, How does it do it? Because it makes our speech insulting, arrogant, condescending, and rather indiscreet, we're too harsh with our tongues, we're overly critical. And if you by the way, if you constantly find yourself getting into arguments, If you constantly find yourself getting into arguments, just stop and think, it may be pride that's getting you there. And if you constantly stir up strife with others, it's only a matter of time before you pick a fight with someone who will really hurt you. So heed the warnings of proverbs, whether it's strife, there is pride.

Now, the contrast to it is humble speech, careful, modest, thoughtful speech rarely stirs up strife because the person is disarming conflict and promoting piece. Look at the next 1 versus - chapter 25 versus 6 to 7. It's quite an embarrassing image here. Do not exalt yourself in the king's presence, and do not claim a place among his great men. It is better for him to say to you come up here than for him to humiliate you before his nobles.

This reminds me of an incident when I was working in the West End, for a very smart company and we would hiring – we were finding talent for organizations. We were finding chief executives, board members, senior leadership. And the average fee that we would charge for 1 search was 30000 pounds and that was 20 years ago. So, you know, it was pretty smart. And we had this 1 1 of our partners was a very famous British politician.

She had been she was the youngest woman to be in a cabinet minister. In the 80s. She was extraordinarily well connected, then she came to work for our firm, which is a real coup because she had she could invite anyone and they would come they'd come to an event. Now 1 time, I was supposed to be at a lunch meeting, and I had forgotten where it was, and I was running a bit late I went herring up to the eighth floor of the building where the boardroom was this incredibly smart, shiny table. And I was looking around for this this meeting that I was supposed to be at.

And I saw this room with these people who were all like the great and the good, you know, very, very smart and they all looked amazing. And these are really, really senior people. And I I start going into this room. And the the partner who was a baroness just sort of discretely stepped stepped in front of me before I got across the threshold and said, no, no. This isn't for you.

And I just kind of turned and went off down and eventually found the real meeting I was supposed to be at. Quite embarrassing. To be inviting yourself to the top table when you weren't really invited there. What is this proverb saying to us? Pride makes us immodest.

We think we're bigger than we are. It encourages self promotion. We can think we're more important more significant than we really are, some people reinvent reality to make themselves seem really big and important. But it is a fantasy. They're living in a dream, and when reality bursts the bubble, it's very painful for them.

And they sometimes melt down and collapse in tears, or they explode with rage, a sense of victimhood. How dare you? But unfortunately, the problem was in them the whole time. Pride makes us seem modest. So let me ask you, are you modest?

Are you modest? Here are some diagnostic questions. Do you exalt yourself in conversation? When you're sharing a story, you tell it in a way that makes you look good. Do you frequently interrupt people because you assume that what you're saying is more profound and important.

Do you exalt yourself at work You're quick to take credit for what the team did, very slow to take blame. Do you exalt yourself online? It's very easy to promote ourselves through social media, presenting an image to the world that makes us look more glorious than we really are. That's pride doing it. And of course 1 of the lead places we do it is fake book.

Chapter 21 verse 24, we're down at the bottom of the left side there. The proud and arrogant person, Mocker is his name. Behaves with insolent fury. Not surprisingly, pride leads people to behave very presumptuously Here it says, pride causes people to look at others and mock them. Look at them over there.

Oh, more days, is he wearing? Making fun. That's because pride makes us play the comparison game all the time with other people. We're always checking to see if we are better than them, more clever than them, richer than them, more successful, fitter, better looking than someone else. Does my bum look big in this?

I've never asked that question, but you know, it's a comparison game. And then When we found something that we're better, that we've disdained the other person, a Moco is someone who delights in pointing out the weaknesses of other people. Whereas the apostle Paul in Romans, a marvelous phrase in Romans 12, I think. He says, outdo 1 another in showing honor as a great American pastor called Ray, Portland. He has a men's group like this, which is which is based on that 1 line in Romans.

And he says, what we do as men is we gather and we outdo each other in showing honor. Because what men are really good at is tearing down other men. I think we Brits are some of you guys international, maybe you could speak wisdom into this. We brits are particularly guilty of this, mocking, tearing down. It's part of our we think it's our humor.

It is, but is it driven by pride? So there's 7 things that Pride does. What a picture? Tommy, you're not going to ask me back again in a hurry, are you? That's what pride does.

And how are you feeling right now, friends? By the way, if you are thinking of 1 or 2 people, who you wish could have been here today. Because you can really see how this talk applies to them. Be very afraid, you're really far gone. So what is pride, right hand side?

What is as I said earlier, the bible doesn't have a single neat verse that's a definition of pride, but we've got loads of data. So over the years, Christian teachers and and theologians have taken all this data and tried to distill it down and articulate a concept of what pride is. And I've got a couple of quotes here. I think capture some of this wisdom for us. 1 of the greatest thinkers in Christian history was a fourth century African, His name was Augustus.

It was a bishop, often called Saint Augustine. He defined pride as the creatures refusal submit to God. So the creature we've been made by God, but we refuse to submit to his lordship, refuse to admit our creatureliness and give God his position as the Lord. So Augustus says, this was the root, the fountainhead sin. In in Eden, Adam and Eve, Adam and Eve's sin was the refusal to let God be God and want to self rule.

And Augustus saw that pride was present at the Fall of Satan, who when he tried to escape God's authority. Interesting sidebar actually. You know when the scriptures talk about the criteria for an elder. And it says, he must not be a recent convert Unless he becomes puffed up and falls into the same snare as the devil. What's that about?

Pride. So a recent convert who's promoted into a position of leadership in the church could become proud of himself and then not want to serve The devil didn't want to serve, rather rule in hell than serve in heaven. That's John Milton. So Augustus says, pride is present in the fall of Satan, pride is present in the fall of Adam and Eve, who seek to escape God's authority by becoming self God's, so it's the root sin that leads to the others. What happens when you try to define yourself without letting God define you.

This is a guy called Tony Reincher. Pride turns a man inward to find his purpose. It makes him feed on himself in the search for satisfaction. Pride folds the soul over onto itself shrivels it, causes the soul to fade and then nearly disappear. I remember preaching at our church, my days, 20 years ago, it was 1 of the most fantastic sermons I've ever heard.

By the way, Pete is 1 of the best preachers I've ever heard. Just to make him struggle with pride a bit more. Thanks, brother. Straight the hell. Yeah.

And he was talking about the soul curving in on itself, because we're so self absorbed, and we you get diminished and smaller and smaller and shriveled until in the end there's hardly any of us left. You can see this with some old people, can't you? It was horrendous. But when you see this holy spirit come into a person and gradually they get more and more released from their pride, wow. Person is so much greater, and these kind of people are not full of themselves.

They just released from it all. It's such such a contrast between what the the pride in our nature and the devil leads us to will diminish us all all we can become so much free of that. What a difference? Augustus said, who can unravel that twisted and tangled nottiness? It is foul I hate to reflect on it, I hate to look on it, but the lord do I long for.

In a single phrase, Pride is the love of one's own excellence. A little bit closer to our time. CS Lewis, who we started with a quote from him, he wrote a book called The Scroutate Letter, an imaginative account of a senior devil, writing to a junior devil whose job is to try and destroy a young Christian. And actually, when Lewis had finished writing it, he said, I never want to do that again because it just it messed with his head. Trying to imagine.

And the book is incredibly insightful into how someone a devil would try to destroy young Christian. And here's the brilliant definition of pride. From the preface. Pride is the ruthless, sleepless, unsmiling concentration upon self which is the mark of hell. The ruthless, sleepless, unsmiling concentration upon self Now these definitions I think are getting us to the heart of how pride works.

It's the love of one's own excellence, And it's the total absorption with yourself, which of course we're all being encouraged to do so much more now, aren't we? Selfies. Oh my days. Everything's got an I on it, an iPhone, everything is all about me. As a result, we don't do anything unless it's for self.

People don't do a job, serve in church, raise a child, spend money, talk, unless it's about them. Friday is all about me. So everything we do is a means to an end to try and get respect, to be approved, to be admired, to be adored, there's an endless ego calculation going on all the time, How do people view me? How am I regarded? How am I looking today?

What about me? I've seen a church nearly torn apart because a young man didn't get his his desired dream ministry position and was our What about me? You're making a noise p. I wonder if you've seen that too. Now these if these definitions are even partway correct, Pride, this is really interesting, by the way.

So if you're zoning out, come back. Pride can work in 2 opposite ways, 1 is the obvious way that we all think about a proud person who's superior and arrogantly thinks they're better than other people, but the other way is really subtle And it's a pride through inferiority, the person is always going on about how unworthy they are. Oh, I'm rubbish. No 1 likes me. I'm not very good at that.

And if you think about it, that's pride too because it's all focusing unsmideingly on the self. We can be really proud by being very superior or being obsessed with our inferiority. Either way, we're still obsessed with our ourselves. According to the Bible, we are all proud brothers, all of us. It's not that some of us have this struggle and others don't.

We are all proud. It's just that we don't see it because Pride has this remarkable ability to go under the radar. But has something been exposed today in the last half an hour? I hope so, because it would be good for us to see that and start to correct it. Finally then, what to do about it.

And I've just got 3 proverbs, 3 kind of keywords that come out of proverbs. Respect, listen and confess. So the first 1 there chapter 13 verse 13. Whoever scorns instruction, will pay for it, but whoever respects a command is rewarded. Now a humble person respects what God says to us in His Word.

They respect that God might give a command and would think, ah, okay, I've been going wrong all this time, but thank God I've now been told. Whereas the proud spirit cannot receive correction and criticism, and the person either pushes back very defensively all the time or collapses in misery and self pity. Because Pride Scorn's instruction. This first then is all about our posture and our attitude to God's word. Whoever respects a command is rewarded.

So when you hear God's voice in the bible, brothers, will you revere it and respect it and open yourself up to a new path. That's a respect. Secondly, Listen fifteen:thirty 1. Whoever listens to a life giving correction will be at home among the wise. According to Proverbs, the mark of a foolish person is that they are wise in their own eyes, They think they're wise.

They can't be told. They always think they know best. They're always right. It couldn't possibly be If something does go wrong, they always have an excuse for it or someone else to blame. That means they can never learn from life.

Or from other people or from God's word. Continue making bad choices. Such a person rarely listens But wisdom says, I need help. I need help from you. You need help from each other.

We need advice. We need correction. We need to be humble enough to hear it and take it. And I need other people to speak truth to me in love. Because I can't find on my own.

My pride is blinding. When was the last time you said to someone else Help me to understand this. What did I do wrong? Help me see myself. How can I improve where am I out of line with reality?

And I would encourage you, and I know this can be hard for men. I would encourage you to develop relationships maybe just a couple of brothers where you can trust someone enough to open up like that and they can speak to you. Thirdly confess. Chapter 28. Whoever conceals their sins does not prosper, but the 1 who confesses and renounces them, finds mercy.

Martin Luther's 95 theses, which started the – officially started the great debate that led to the reformation. He nailed his thesis, his arguments, theological arguments to the door of a church. The first 1 of those said, all of life is repentance. All of life is repentance. And you know repentance is turning around a complete change of direction.

I hear that the word of God my turn and change direction and change of mind. So you don't just start the Christian life by repenting, says Luther, You you repent every step of the way, all of life. That doesn't mean you don't change, But it does mean that as God reveals you to yourself, you will grow by repenting and changing every day. And I've been a Christian for, I don't know, coming up 40 years. And wow, do I see the need to repent now more than ever?

You think you're pretty good until you get married. And then, oh, dear, how selfish we are. And then you think you're doing okay, and then a child comes along. Oh my goodness. How how I was sharing a sharing a conversation with a colleague this week about a child coming in and sleeping in the bed, and then wetting the bed.

And then pretend then pretending that you're asleep, so that your wife has to get up and deal with it. And I said, brother, I would never do that. Now, it says here, if we want to flourish, we should confess our sins. The 1 who confesses and renounces them, finds mercy. You confess your sins in 2 directions, we confess to God, we know that, but you know, we also confess to 1 another, and this is where Catholics have got something partly right that we protestants often overlook, is the idea of confession being a grace that comes to us.

Now, of course, the whole business of the priest and all that is is a completely unbiblical addition. But the Bible does say The epistle by James, confess your sins, and he means to 1 another, and that's a way of giving us spiritual life. And I was put under the spotlight of God's word, whilst I was preparing this. I've shared some of this material with my wife. It was a very wise woman and very direct.

And she said, do you know what? You are a very proud person. And I had to confess it. And that is the beginning of recovery for pride addicts like me. Yeah, you're right.

And this first doesn't just call for confession. It speaks of renunciation, the ESV, the English standard version says, He who confesses and forsakes, forsakes them. We'll find mercy. Forsaking is leaving something behind and not going back for it. This word, same word in the Hebrew languages, used 4 times when Joseph ran from Potifa's wife.

You remember that story? Pot of his wife grabs him, and he left his garment in his hand, and he ran for his Tune run for his life out of the house, 4 times it says he forsook his garment. And what going back for it? Here's CS Lewis again. If anyone would like to acquire humility, I can, I think, tell him the first step?

The first step is to realize that 1 is proud. And a biggish step 2, at least nothing whatever can be done before it. If you think you are not conceited, It means you are very conceited indeed. That's the first step. Admit it.

But that's not where it ends, because we have someone else to look to. The 1 truly humble person who ever lived. He was the 1 who had everything to be proud about. He was the Prince of Glory, the King of Kings, took a journey from heaven to earth, and he didn't set up in a marble palace and surround himself with servants and opulence. He came and was born in poverty in a stable.

His first bed was an animal's feeding trough. He did not finish high school, and he certainly didn't go to university. He never owned much, he never owned property, In fact, when he died at the age of 33, he only owned the clothes he was standing up in. His entire life was 1 of service to other people. He was truly humble.

And this is what Paul says to a church reflecting on Jesus. Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility, value others above yourselves. Not looking to your own interests, but each of you to the interests of others. In your relationships, with 1 another have the same mindset as Christ Jesus, who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage.

Rather, he made himself nothing. By taking the very nature of a slave, being found in human likeness, and being found in appearance as a man He humbled himself further, becoming obedient to death, even death on a cross. Therefore, God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus, every knee should bow in heaven and on earth and under the earth. And every tongue acknowledged that Jesus Christ is lord to the glory of father. So what new step of humility is God calling you to today?

Let's be brave enough to take it. Shall I pray, Pete? And then maybe have a few minutes? Or do you want to think that's


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