September 5 (Daily reading: Ezekiel 28-30, NIV) As God pronounced judgment on the nations though the prophecies of Ezekiel, their pride and self-sufficiency are highlighted. God is creator, and He is the sovereign Lord. When man forgets this and lives as if he is the master of his own universe, there will always be a reckoning. God said about the king of Tyre: “In the pride of your heart you say, “I am a god” (28:2). This has been mankind’s problem from the beginning. Listen to what Satan told Eve: “God knows that in the day you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God.” This lie made her see the fruit of the forbidden tree as “desirable to make one wise” (Gen. 3:5-6). Do I ever believe that I am a god? I would never admit that, but anytime that I follow my own way and forsake God’s way, I am guilty of living like I am the master, and God has been relegated to an inferior place. We need to always remember what God told the king: “You are a man and not a god” (28:2).
This is the same spirit possessed by Egypt: “You say, ‘The Nile belongs to me; I made it for myself’” (29:3). They would be judged for not recognizing God as creator. “Then they (both Egypt and Israel) will know that I am the Sovereign LORD” (29:16). God said, “(Egypt’s) proud strength will come to an end … and they will know that I am the LORD” (30:18-19).
Paul wrote that, to avoid this deadly pride, we as Christians should have the attitude of Christ (Phil. 2:5). “Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but (rather) with humility of mind” (Phil. 2:3). He advised a follower of Christ “not to think more highly of himself than he ought to think” (Rom. 12:3).
– Al Gary