But He giveth more grace. Wherefore He saith, God resisteth the proud,
but giveth grace unto the humble. Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil,
and he will flee from you. Draw nigh to God, and He will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your
hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded. Be afflicted, and mourn, and
weep; let your laughter be turned to mourning, and your joy to heaviness Humble yourselves
in the sight of the Lord, and He shall lift you up (James 4:6-10).
When taking up the subject of "pride" and
"humility" one finds great comfort in the way James approaches the subject.
"But He giveth more grace." It is as if the message here from God’s Spirit
is: "But for the grace of God we would all be consumed in the pride of our fallen
flesh." Pride comes naturally and is prolific. Humility is the product of God’s
grace in human flesh.
Christ is the greatest example of humility, as He laid aside His
heavenly garments, and clothed Himself in human flesh, only to later lay aside His outer
garment and gird Himself with the servant’s towel (John 13:4,5). Ultimately, this
pictures the laying aside of the outward expression of His Divine glory so that He might
be made sin for us. He humbled Himself unto death, even the death of the cross (Phil.
God not only resists the proud, He hates pride. Pride is sin and God
hates sin, but especially the sin of pride (Ps. 101:5; Prov. 6:16,17; 8:13). Here are five
reasons why this sin in particular is hated so by God:
1. It was the "original" sin committed by Lucifer which cast
him down to earth.
2. It was the "sin of Eve" which ultimately brought the fall
of the human race.
3. It is the "root sin" of most symptomatic sins committed
4. It is the most subtle and common sin found in believers.
5. It is the one sin which most sinners "stumble over" when
faced with God’s free gift of salvation by grace alone.
James presents a fivefold progression for the child of God who through
God’s grace desires humility of spirit. The progression is composed of key action
verbs: submit, resist, draw nigh, cleanse, be afflicted. These words give us a course of
action to bring our proud hearts to God-pleasing humility.
1. It must begin by submission. Here is the recognition of the
Lordship of Christ and our role as "servants" whose wills are solely to do that
of the Master’s bidding. Satan will oppose this act of submission in your life to the
Lord. He will shoot the fiery darts of "self-exaltation" into your mind. He will
promote esteeming yourself, building up the self-esteem of the flesh.
2. To this we must resist until he flees.
3. By drawing nigh to God, we get the real view of ourselves,
exposing our true hearts. We cry out like Isaiah of old "Woe is me" (Isa.
4. Clean hands and pure hearts are the conditions for entering
His presence (Ps. 24:3,4).
5. This position in God’s presence should cause deep remorse and
repentance like Job in "dust and ashes" and we should be afflicted over
the sin in our lives (Job 42:1-6).
As we take our sin and ourselves seriously before God, we will begin to
walk with God in humility of heart (Micah 6:6-8).
No matter where you are in the pathway of the Christian walk, pride can
have a devastating impact on your service, worship, relationships, and your fellowship
with God and one another. Like the simple game of Simon Says, we may have gained a small
step forward in our walk with God, and experience a major set back when the sin of pride
gains a foothold in our life. Pride and humility are opposites in constant contrast and
struggle in our lives.