Pride Vs True Humility


Elder Robert Willis (dec)

Many men do not look on “Humility” as a trait or characteristic of which they are desirous of having. Doesn’t make sense as it is a biblical trait and it is esteemed well worth having by the Lord’s own instructions. While humanity may look upon humility as a weakness, it is one of the most fundamental of Christian virtues. Without humility we can never be “like” Christ. In Philippians 2:7 we find the Apostle Paul speaking of Christ in this manner; “But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men:…” The “form of a servant” is a state of humbleness, not one of pride. Pride is defined as “a high opinion of one's own, importance, merit, or superiority, whether as cherished in the mind or as displayed in bearing, conduct, etc.” One who is prideful is one who thinks more of themselves than they have a right to.

Paul clarifies an accurate rendering concerning pride in Romans 12:3, “For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.” To think more highly of ourselves than we ought is pride, but thinking soberly is humility which pleases God.

Solomon alluded to the same thinking which Paul did because they were both being led in their thinking by the Spirit of God. Notice Proverbs 11:2, “When pride cometh, then cometh shame: but with the lowly is wisdom.” Then again in Proverbs 16:17-19, “The highway of the upright is to depart from evil: he that keepeth his way preserveth his soul. Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall. Better it is to be of an humble spirit with the lowly, than to divide the spoil with the proud.”

Pride will cause you to dominate every conversation. Pride will cause you to talk about yourself. One of your favorite words will be “I.” Pride will cause you to be rude, thinking you are more important than everyone else. The height of Pride (Daniel 4:29-30) came in Nebuchadnezzar’s reign as “he walked in the palace of the kingdom of Babylon. The king spake, and said, Is not this great Babylon, that I have built for the house of the kingdom by the might of my power, and for the honour of my majesty?”  No humility here at all, just pride in what he thought he had accomplished. Pride gone to seed!


Pride is something that is easy to see in the lives of others, but nearly impossible to see in self. Now we find that James expresses the benefits to God’s children for shunning anything to do with Pride and seeking diligently to be humble in the sight of the Lord.


James 4:6, “But he giveth more grace. Wherefore he saith, God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble.”  James 4:10, “Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up.”

As for me and my house, having the gift of grace and then being lifted up in the sight of the Lord, is far better than being resisted by Him.