All of my life, I have heard the phrase “I’m proud to be an American” or even people being “proud of their children” and lately, I have been convicted about it. I understand the idea behind this and do not claim to be more mature than you if this is something that applies to you. However, the truth is that God hates ALL pride and for too long we have been duped by the enemy into embracing pride, in a very subtle form.
Proverbs says a lot about pride and none of it is good. “When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with the humble is wisdom.”
“Pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall.”
“Pride brings a person low, but the lowly in spirit gain honor.“
Notice the common connection of a proud/haughty spirit versus a humble spirit and watch how James confirms this and builds on it.
James 4 says “Or do you suppose it is to no purpose that the Scripture says, “He yearns jealously over the spirit that he has made to dwell in us”? But he gives more grace. Therefore it says, “God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble.”
Do we want a proud spirit or the Holy Spirit?
The proud…ALL PRIDE is opposed by God because it is opposition to God. Pride resists grace. Humility seeks grace and receives more. Part of this grace is described in the next verses of James 4:
“Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded. Be wretched and mourn and weep. Let your laughter be turned to mourning and your joy to gloom. Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will exalt you!“
It’s a spirit of grace and humility that submits to God and seeks him. It’s God’s grace that empowers us to resist the devil. It’s because of His grace that He does and will continue to draw near to us! This is a guarantee for those who humbly seek Him!
But, that may not be overnight. We know that “For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven…a time to break down, and a time to build up; a time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance…a time to seek, and a time to lose;
a time to keep, and a time to cast away..”
America, this is a time to weep for our sins and a time to mourn.
This is a time to seek the Lord’s face.
It is a time to lose and cast away our pride and selfish ambition.
It’s time to break down the lies of the enemy that we have received and even built on and renounce any and ALL pride!
As we humble ourselves, seek His face, turn from our wicked ways, He has promised that He will hear from Heaven, forgive our sins and restore our land! ( paraphrased according to 2 Chron.7:14- And if you want to read something interesting, check out 2 Chronicles 7:11-22 and look at the spiritual parallel in these verses about God’s house/us that He gave Solomon that still apply to us today!)
When we do this, He will give us the grace we need!
And I will pour out on the house of David and the inhabitants of Jerusalem a spirit of grace and pleas for mercy (or fervent prayer), so that, when they look on me, on him whom they have pierced, they shall mourn for him, as one mourns for an only child, and weep bitterly over him, as one weeps over a firstborn.” Zech.12:10
This is a promise to us, as seed of David, we are spiritually inhabitants of “Jerusalem” through Jesus, the “Son of David”.
If we think that we don’t need grace, we are seriously deceived and extremely proud.
But, God has promised to give more grace to the humble and to honor them!
Humble yourself before the Lord and He will lift you up! James 4:10
Prophecy: America is invited to receive greater grace than God has ever poured out before! America is invited to truly bring the light of Jesus into a dark and lost world by His gracious Spirit and not by our wealth or ability, if we will stop doing things our way and seek His perfect will! We can heal, feed and change the world much better through the grace of God in 7 years than we could in 2000 years if we will simply submit to God!
***Added food for thought***
The truth is that the root for grace/charis is mentioned over 150 times in the NT and about 1% of those times it may apply to financial things. This is something good to chew on and read the next chapter (5) in James because the riches of His grace (mentioned in Eph.1 and 2) is so much more than the things of this world!