Ep. #064 - The Respectable Sin of Pride

There are different ways pride shows itself, including our own doctrine. So how can we apply the gospel to pride? Find out how to fight pride in your own life!


  • 9 He also told this parable to some who trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and treated others with contempt: 10“Two men went up into the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. 11 The Pharisee, standing by himself, prayed thus: ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other men, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even like this tax collector. 12 I fast twice a week; I give tithes of all that I get.’ 13 But the tax collector, standing far off, would not even lift up his eyes to heaven, but beat his breast, saying, ‘God, be merciful to me, a sinner!’ 14 I tell you, this man went down to his house justified, rather than the other. For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but the one who humbles himself will be exalted.” - Luke 18:9-14

Pride of Moral Self-Righteousness
  • The pride of the Pharisee in Jesus’ parable was what we can call moral self-righteousness. It expresses itself in a feeling of moral superiority with respect to other people. This type of pride is not limited to believers. It is found in the political and cultural realms among both liberals and conservatives. Anyone who believes, for example, that he holds the moral high ground in any area such as politics, economics, or environmental policy is likely indulging in moral self-righteousness. Sadly, however, it is very common. - Bridges, Jerry. Respectable Sins(p. 86). The Navigators. Kindle Edition. 

Pride of Right Doctrine
  • In 1 Corinthians 8, Paul addressed this form of pride when it arose over the issue of eating food that had been offered to idols. Some of the Corinthian Christians had concluded that such a practice fell within the bounds of Christian liberty. Paul did not disagree with that conclusion, but he did rebuke them for the doctrinal pride that resulted from their belief. He wrote to them, “Now concerning food offered to idols: we know that ‘all of us possess knowledge.’ This ‘knowledge’ puffs up, but love builds up” (1 Corinthians 8:1). Paul agreed with their “knowledge”—that is, their doctrinal belief regarding eating food offered to idols—but he charges them with doctrinal pride. Their “knowledge” had puffed them up. - Bridges, Jerry. Respectable Sins(pp. 88-89). The Navigators. Kindle Edition. 

Pride of Achievement
  • Credit ourselves rather than God.
  • Inordinate desire for recognition.

Pride of an Independent Spirit
  • Before starting on this book, I sent a proposed list of “acceptable” sins to about fifteen people in Christian ministry and asked them to add to the list any I had overlooked. From two who minister to students and young adults, I received a suggestion that I include the pride of an independent spirit. This spirit expresses itself primarily in two areas: a resistance to authority, especially spiritual authority, and an unteachable attitude. - Bridges, Jerry. Respectable Sins(p. 93). The Navigators. Kindle Edition. 

  • Resistance to authority.

  • Obey your leaders and submit to them, for they are keeping watch over your souls, as those who will have to give an account. Let them do this with joy and not with groaning, for that would be of no advantage to you. - Hebrews 13:17

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