Best Ways Of Removing Pride Biblically

praying man; removing pride

We guys have a pride issue and it crops up in all kinds of ways. Luckily, God offers grace when we give up our prideful ways and Jesus gives us the perfect example of how to give it up and learn the ways of removing pride.

Our culture promotes pride. Why give it up? Show off that huge house or fancy car so everyone else can notice and you can gain a big following. Or if something is going wrong, don’t admit it. Be strong, hide it, and keep soldiering on. 

But that’s not what the Bible tells us. 

3 Types of Pride and How to Get Rid of It Biblically

The Bible shows us the exact opposite of the culture—that strength comes through humility. And the only way to truly be humble is to live in the truth that every good thing comes from God. On our own, we can do nothing. 

Talking to men for years, I’ve noticed three prevalent types of pride. And I’ve seen how to stop them from taking over our lives. 

1. The pride of being special

One of the most-often loosely quoted Bible verses on pride is “Pride goes before the fall.” Even back in the days of David, before the massive nation-states and global fame, they knew how pride could affect people’s behavior, opening them up for disgrace. There are plenty of modern examples—from politicians to sports to celebrities—but the common lie at the heart of their fall is pride. It wasn’t just lust, but the idea that “I am special. I can get away with it because of my talents or status.” 

The Biblical answer to removing the pride of being special: The Bible doesn’t say, “To whom much is given, that person deserves special treatment.” It says the opposite in Luke 12:48, “To whom much is given, much will be demanded.” Our talents don’t set us apart from others—they’re meant to be used in the service of others. Think about one of the last memories Jesus gave his disciples before He saved humanity. He didn’t have them all toast Him. He washed their feet like a servant. If God on earth made it about others, then you should too. 

2. The pride of performance

A lot of well-meaning, unselfish men fall into the trap of pride through performance. They believe they can earn their own validation if they can compete better and succeed more. The problem is that it’s in relation to being better than others. In the end, you’re playing for pride.

The Biblical answer to removing the pride of performance: Receive your identity as the son of God and you won’t feel the pressure to perform for your own idea of self-actualization. (Guess what even when you succeed, that identity of being a winner is temporary—it only lasts until the next time you lose). Instead, you can perform in whatever your arena is without the pressure of earning your identity. You’re less likely to fall into the traps of pride—delusions of your own greatness, tunnel vision, irritability and blaming others and depression when you lose. Most importantly, win, lose or draw, you’ll honor your Creator. 

3. The pride of image

I’ve had friends who have suffered in silence because it seemed like the noble thing to do. Unfortunately, it was the pride of preserving their image of strength that kept them from being honest, reaching out and getting the help that they needed. In a world where image is everything, image is still unreliable. It’s difficult to maintain and keeps us from living as our true, transparent selves without removing pride.

The Biblical answer to removing the pride of image: Shaping our lives through image doesn’t work well. We weren’t meant to be image-makers, but image-bearers (Genesis 1:27). Made in God’s image, we are relational beings. When you live in the freedom of being yourself, you realize that sharing your weaknesses helps others and gives you strength. As Paul wrote in 2 Corinthians 12:9-10, “[God] said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.”

That message from Paul introduces what I call the paradox of power. Through these examples, we’ve seen the weakness and insecurity of pride. On the other side is the surprising power of humility and honesty. 

These two characteristics, which Jesus exemplified perfectly, are the keys to overcoming pride biblically. 


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