Friday, February 20, 2009

CJ Mahaney on pride

Why does God hate pride so passionately?

Here's why: Pride is when sinful human beings aspire to the status and position of God and refuse to acknowledge their dependence upon Him.

Charles Bridges once noted how pride lifts up one's heart against God and "contends for supremacy" with Him. ...

For purposes of personal confession, I began adopting this definition of pride a few years ago after I came to realize that, to some degree, I'd grown unaffected by pride in my life. Though I was still confessing pride, I knew I wasn't sufficiently convicted of it. So rather than just confessing to God that "I was proud in that situation" ... I learned to say instead, "Lord, in that moment, with that attitude and that action, I was contending for supremacy with You. That's what it was all about. Forgive me." ... This practice increased a weight of conviction in my heart about the seriousness of this sin.

Pride takes innumerable forms but has only one end: self-glorification. That's the motive and ultimate purpose of pride - to rob God of legitimate glory and to pursue self-glorification, contending for supremacy with Him. The proud person seeks to glorify himself and not God, thereby attempting in effect to deprive God of something only He is worthy to receive.

No wonder God opposes pride. No wonder he hates pride. Let that truth sink into your thinking.

From CJ Mahaney Humility: True Greatness 30-31, emphasis in original.

image is from stock.xchng


Steve said...

Have you seen the following blogs about C.J. Mahaney and the group he leads?

They show another side.

Jean said...

Yes I have, Steve, and to be honest, I don't want to get into the debates, as I don't know nearly enough about the churches and people involved.

But what I do know, after reading many chapters by respected Christian authors on pride and humility recently, is that CJ Mahaney gets to the heart of the issue in his book far more profoundly and biblically than anything else I've read so far. I would recommend his book wholeheartedly to anyone thinking through issues of pride and humility.

Steve said...


Good you are aware of those blogs. Thus Mahaney might be saying the right things but as reported on these blog, there may be a big difference between what Mahaney says and what his group practices.

mattnbec said...

"Contending for supremacy with you" - that's a helpful phrase. A reality-check and a great reminder that pride is the essence of sin and lurks at the very heart of it.

Jean said...

It is a great quote, isn't it Bec? I'm finding it a very helpful way to think about pride.