WISDOM FOR LIVING DAILY DEVOTIONAL
MAY 1, 2022
TOPIC: RECEIVE HONOUR WITH HUMILITY
BY T. O. BANSO
“A man’s pride will bring him low, but the humble in spirit will retain honour” (Proverbs 29:23 New King James Version).
Both Christians and sinners can be proud. Pride is no respecter of persons! Individuals can be proud as much as an organization or institution can. The Laodicean church said, “I am rich, have become wealthy, and have need of nothing” (Revelation 3:17a). That was pride. Jesus said to this church that it did not know that it was wretched, miserable, poor, blind, and naked (verse 17b). He also said, “I counsel you to buy from Me gold refined in the fire, that you may be rich; and white garments, that you may be clothed, that the shame of your nakedness may not be revealed; and anoint your eyes with eye salve, that you may see. As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten. Therefore be zealous and repent” (verses 18-19).
Some people think they are humble but they don’t know that they are proud. Some people’s problem with pride is exposed when they experience promotion and people begin to honour them. We all must deal with pride in our lives, especially as people honour us because of our achievements, age, or status. You must be very careful that the honour people give you does not go to your head. Don’t be inflated with pride because of the honour people give you. Don’t have an exaggerated opinion of yourself.
Don’t become proud because of your choice for an office or promotion. Learn to receive honour with humility. May your honour not turn into humiliation. “When pride comes, then comes shame; but with the humble is wisdom” (Proverbs 11:2 New King James Version).
1 Timothy 3:6 says a new Christian must not be appointed a bishop (an elder or overseer) because he might be proud of being chosen so soon, and the devil will use that pride to make him fall. This is very true. But old Christians must never assume that they cannot also be taken over by pride. There is always the temptation to be proud when others begin to honour you. You may feel you deserve it, you are superior to them, or you are indispensable. You could even feel that you’re the best thing that has ever happened. The world is at your feet! Be careful.
Whether in the church or society, receive honour with humility. It is not wrong for people to honour you but it is your fault if you allow it to make you proud. This is the path to destruction. Proverbs 29:23 says, “A man’s pride will bring him low, but the humble in spirit will retain honour” (New King James Version).
The Bible says before honour is humility (proverbs 15:33b; 18:12b). Humility will bring you honour but you must continue to be humble so that you don’t lose the honour. Beware of pride. Satan lost his place in heaven because of pride (Isaiah 14:12-15; Ezekiel 28:12-19). “Pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall” (Proverbs 16:18 New King James Version).
Humility will bring you more honour but pride will lead to your fall. Don’t mistake the honour, love and submission of your followers for your indispensability. You may be a manager or leader in an office or organization, ensure you don’t become proud because of your exalted office and the number of people under your authority.
Leaders receive both honour and flattery! You must know how to handle both. Herod died mysteriously for accepting the flattery that his voice was the voice of god and not that of man. Immediately, an angel of the Lord struck him, worms ate him, and he died (Acts 12:21-23). He wouldn’t have died if he had stopped the people who kept shouting that his voice was the voice of god and not that of man. Don’t accept people’s flattery. Don’t believe people’s words intended to make you bigger than you truly are. Even the honour you rightly deserve, accept it with humility.
After Paul had healed a man crippled from his mother’s womb in Lystra – the man had never walked – the people declared that the gods had come down to them in the likeness of men. They meant that Paul and Barnabas were gods in human bodies (Acts 14:11). The people were amazed, believing that only the gods could have done that. Therefore, they named Barnabas, Zeus, and Paul, Hermes, because he was the chief speaker. The priest of Zeus brought oxen and garlands to the gates to sacrifice to Paul and Barnabas – gods!
How did Paul and Barnabas react to what they did? Did they feel on top of the world, enjoying it as Herod did? No. They tore their clothing in dismay and ran out to stop them. They told them that they were men like them, preaching to them the Word of God. Paul and Barnabas didn’t say they were gods. No matter how much anointing, grace etc. you have, you must remain a man. Don’t call yourself a god to be worshipped.
In Acts 10, when Peter came to the house of Cornelius, Cornelius fell to the floor before him in worship (verse 25). “But Peter lifted him up, saying, ‘Stand up; I myself am also a man’” (Acts 10:26 New King James Version). Cornelius got up, and they talked together and went inside where the others were assembled. Peter didn’t feel superior to Cornelius who was even a gentile and wasn’t yet saved. He wasn’t proud despite being the leader of all the apostles. Yet you see many people today who easily get intoxicated by little honour and sometimes flattery.
Whatever your position, spiritual or secular, emulate those who use their good offices with humility. Beware of sycophancy; shun flattery. Nobody is indispensable. “Better to be of a humble spirit with the lowly, than to divide the spoil with the proud” (Proverbs 16:19 New King James Version). God resists the proud but gives grace to the humble (James 4:6; 1 Peter 5:5). Whoever exalts himself will be humbled (Matthew 23:12; Luke 14:11; 18:14).
When people honour you, don’t focus on yourself. Focus on God. Give the honour back to God. If you have to talk, don’t talk about what you have done; talk about what God has done. Don’t magnify yourself; magnify God. Give all the glory to Him privately and publicly. Let Him increase while you decrease (John 3:30). Shift people’s attention away from you to God. There’s nothing you have that you didn’t receive from God (1 Corinthians 4:7). When you humble yourself under the mighty hand of God, He will continue to exalt you.
If you are not born again, you need to give your life to Jesus now. I urge you to take the following steps: *Admit that you are a sinner, and you cannot save yourself and repent of your sins. *Confess Jesus as your Lord and Saviour. *Renounce your past way of life – your relationship with the devil and his works. *Invite Jesus into your life. *As a mark of seriousness to mature in the faith, start attending a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church. There they will teach you how to grow in the Kingdom of God.
Kindly say this prayer now: O Lord God, I come unto You today. I know I am a sinner, and I cannot save myself. I believe Jesus is the Son of God who died on the cross to save me and was raised on the third day. I repent of my sins and confess Jesus as my Lord and Saviour. I surrender my life to Jesus now and invite Him into my heart. By this prayer, I know I am saved. Thank You, Jesus, for saving me and making me a child of God.
I believe you have said this prayer from your heart. Congratulations! You will need to join a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church in your area where they will teach you how to live your new life in Christ Jesus. I pray that you flourish like the palm tree and grow like the cedar of Lebanon. May you grow into Christ in all things and become all God wants you to be. I will be glad to hear from you. The Lord be with you.
PRAYER POINTS: Holy Spirit, deliver me from pride and let me not be deceived by flattery. Help me to receive with humility the honour people give me. Let it not go to my head. My honour will not turn into humiliation in Jesus’ name. I shall not fall after You have lifted me up. I receive divine wisdom to remain humble, no matter the promotion You give me.
(For over 800 in-depth and powerful messages by T. O. Banso, visit www.cedarministry.org).
T. O. Banso is the President, Cedar Ministry International, Abuja, Nigeria.
Phone No: +2348155744752, +2348033113523
WhatsApp No: +2349081295947