Pride is a very terrible sin. The proud person sees himself as the very center of the universe. He sees himself as the most important person in all of planet earth. The proud person has a big problem. There is nothing more important to him than "ME, MYSELF and I." Here is what Mr. Pride says:
Look at me!
Notice me and who I am!
Pay attention to me and to what I have done!
How great I am!
How wonderful I am!
Wont you join me in praising myself?
I AM THE GREATEST!
Lets think about the very first sin. The very first sin was not murder. It was not stealing. It was not lying. It was not swearing or saying bad words. The very first sin was PRIDE. Who was the very first creature who sinned (see 1 John 3:8)? ___________________ What did he do? According to 1 Timothy 3:6 we learn that he was "lifted up with ________________."
God created a beautiful angel who was righteous and holy and good. This angel is sometimes known by the name of L______________ (Isaiah 14:12). He was very close to God and he served in the very presence of God. He was one of the most important angels that God created.
Something terrible happened to this angel! Concerning Lucifer the Bible says, "Thine heart was ________________ ______ because of thy beauty" (Ezekiel 28:17). He became PROUD of his beauty and his wisdom and his power. He must have said something like this:
|LUCIFER SAID (to himself Isaiah 14:13)||"How beautiful I am! How wise I am! God is not the only One who is great. Im great too. Why should all the angels worship God? Should they not worship me too? I WILL BE LIKE THE MOST HIGH (see Isaiah 14:12-14)"|
Because of this great sin of pride, Lucifer the angel became Satan the Devil! He lifted himself up high but God will bring him down low (see Isaiah 14:14-15)! We want to be careful that we do not fall into the devils sin (1 Timothy 3:6) and start thinking too highly of ourselves (see Romans 12:3).
What do you think of yourself? What is your opinion of yourself? What is your estimate of yourself? (Below average? Average? Good? Great? The greatest?) How do you rate yourself?
Everyone wants "to be something." We want to be somebody of importance. We want to amount to something! We want to be able to say, "IM SOMEBODY!" We are somewhat surprised, therefore, to read Galatians 6:3 and to discover that although we may think we are ____________________, in reality (from Gods point of view) we are ___________________! We are not as important as we thought we were!
If you were to drop dead today (compare Luke 12:20), would the world be able to go on without you? Would your death be reported on national television (on the evening news)? Would you be long remembered as some great and famous person?
Many people think that they are V.I.P.s (VERY IMPORTANT PERSONS). They think that they are so important that the world could never get along without them! The next time you feel this way, read the following poem:
Saxon White Kessinger
Sometime, when you're feeling important;
Sometime, when you feel that your going
Take a bucket and fill it with water.
You may splash all you please when you enter;
The moral in this quaint example
What everyone needs to understand is how valuable and important we are to God. God, in His mercy and kindness and grace, was willing to send His Son to suffer and die for His sinful creatures. He loved us when we were very unlovable. We are important and valuable to Him! But when we understand God's great love for those who don't deserve any of it, this should make us very humble, not proud.
In this chapter of notes we want to study a man who thought he was a V.I.P. (Very Important Person). He thought that everyone should appreciate him and recognize him! His name was HAMAN and we learn about him in the book of Esther.
Haman was Satans man! He was an enemy of Gods people the Jews (Esther 3:10; 7:6). Haman was PROUD just like Satan!
Who promoted Haman and made him great (read Esther 3:1 and circle the correct answer)?
(b) a man (the King)
Haman was given a seat or a throne above all the other princes! He became the 2nd most powerful man in all the Persian empire! Only the king was more powerful than he. When a person is exalted very HIGH, there is only one way he can go--DOWN! When you reach the top of a Ferris wheel, what is the only direction you can go? _________ If you take the elevator all the way to the top floor, the next time the elevator moves, which direction will it go? _______________ As we shall see, Haman went from the THRONE to the G______________ where he was hung (see Esther 7:10)! It will be interesting to see how God brought this man down!
If a believer wants to go up, what must he first do (1 Peter 5:6; James 4:10)? __________________________________________________________ The word "HUMBLE" is the opposite of "PROUD." If a person really wants to go up then he must first go down (by being humble in the right way and by not being lifted up in pride). Who is the One who can lift a person up and make them great (James 4:10)? ______________
What did all the servants of the king do (Esther 3:2)?) ___________ What man refused to do this (Esther 3:2)? ________________ Mordecai was a Jew and he refused to bow down before proud Haman. When Haman saw that Mordecai did not bow down to worship him (Esther 3:5) he was (circle the correct answer):
|a. filled with joy||d. filled with wrath (hot, burning anger)|
|b. pleased and delighted||e. indifferent (he did not really care)|
|c. somewhat disappointed|
Haman loved to see people bowing down before him. He loved to have people recognize how great and how important he was. And when just one man refused to do this HE WAS ANGRY!
When a proud man does not get what he wants WATCH OUT! Hes dangerous! Hamans burning anger moved him to try to destroy and exterminate not only Mordecai, but who else (Esther 3:6)? ALL THE J________ Haman even had lots thrown (something like throwing dice) to determine on which day the Jews should be destroyed (Esther 3:7). In this way the day of destruction was planned for the 13th day of the 12th month, which was about 11 months away (see Esther 3:13). Little did Haman realize that he would never live to see this day!
Wicked Haman even convinced the king to make a decree (a law) saying that the Jews would be destroyed on this day. According to Esther 3:9, Haman wanted the Jews to be D________________. In Esther 3:13 what are three words or expressions which describe what was to be done to the Jews on the appointed day? 1)_____________________ 2)___________________3)______________________________ Hamans evil plan seemed to be working. Things did not look good for the Jewish people. How will God work this out?
Later on Haman was invited to a banquet by Queen Esther. Haman did not realize that Esther was a Jew! Haman and the king were the only ones that Esther invited to this banquet. Did Haman think that he must be a very special person to be the only one invited to such a banquet (Esther 5:12)? _____ Was Haman joyful and in a good mood when he left the banquet (Esther 5:9)? _____ What did Haman see that quickly spoiled his joyful mood and filled him with burning anger (Esther 5:9)? _______________________ Haman wanted to destroy his enemy right then and there but he refrained himself (Esther 5:10).
When Haman arrived home, he called together his friends and his wife and told them about all his many blessings. He told them about 1) HIS GLORIOUS RICHES (Esther 5:11), 2) HIS MANY CHILDREN (Esther 5:11 and see Esther 9:10), 3) HIS GREAT PROMOTION (Esther 5:11), 4) HIS SPECIAL INVITATION (Esther 5:12). Even though Haman had all these blessings, he could never be happy or satisfied as long as who was living (Esther 5:13)? _______________________ Just as a small coin held too closely to the eye can block out the sunlight, so Hamans selfish pride and hatred of Mordecai became so big that it blocked out all his other blessings.
Hamans wife and his friends knew just how to solve his problem. A gallows should be built (about 75 feet high) and in the morning Haman should ask the king for permission to hang Mordecai (Esther 5:14). Haman thought this idea was great, and the gallows were built!
On that very night the king learned that Mordecai had once saved his life (about four years earlier) and that he had never been rewarded for this good deed (Esther 6:1-3). When the king learned this he wanted to do something very special to honor Mordecai. The man that Haman wanted to hang was now the man that the king wanted to honor!
Early in the morning Haman came to the outer court, hoping to get permission to see the king. What did Haman want to talk to the king about (Esther 6:4)? _____________________________________________________________________
Before Haman even had a chance to open his mouth, the king spoke and asked, "What shall be done to the man whom the king delighteth to honour?" When he heard this Haman forgot about Mordecai and started thinking about himself! What man did the king have in mind (Esther 6:3)? ____________________________ Who did Haman think the king had in mind (Esther 6:6)? ____________________
In Esther 6:7-9 we see that Haman was ready to give the king his answer. This must have been something that Haman had thought about and dreamed about before. He was probably thinking, "My most wonderful dreams are about to come true!" He did not realize that all of his dreams would suddenly turn into a terrible nightmare! Haman was about to receive the shock of his life!
Read Esther 6:10. Suddenly Haman realized that the man whom the king delighted to honor was not himself, but the man he hated more than any other man. Instead of hanging him, he must now honor him! Haman was trapped! He could not say, "I do not like this idea!" IT WAS HIS OWN IDEA!
One day earlier, when Haman left the Queens banquet he was joyful and had a glad heart (Esther 5:9). After helping to parade Mordecai through the city, did Haman have a glad and joyful heart (Esther 6:12)? _____ He was the most miserable person in all the kingdom!
Hamans wife and friends knew that what happened to him was more than "bad luck." They knew that Haman was headed for a fall from which he would never recover (Esther 6:13). When a person lifts himself up in pride, the only place to go is DOWN! "_______________ goeth before destruction and an haughty spirit before a _______" (Proverbs 16:18).
Esther, the king and Haman met together for their second banquet. It was during this banquet that Esther told the king that Haman was the enemy of the Jews (Esther 7:3-6). When the king learned this about Haman was he angry (Esther 7:7)? _____ The King sentenced Haman to death (Esther 7:9).
The sins of the wicked will often be turned on their own head (Proverbs 26:27; Psalm 7:15-16). This is called "THE BOOMERANG EFFECT." Haman threw a boomerang at Mordecai and it missed Mordecai and came back and hit Haman on the head! Consider Psalm 9:15-16. What net or trap did Haman prepare (Esther 5:14)? __________________ Who did he want to trap on that gallows (Esther 7:9)? _______________ As it turned out, who was caught on that gallows (Esther 7:10)? ______________ The one who wanted to be paraded about and displayed before the city (Esther 6:7-9) was now displayed on a very tall tree (gallows) for all to see (Esther 7:10). He wanted to be exalted and lifted up and he was! He was lifted up to die a shameful death!
Haman tried to make himself great and he became a great fool. Mordecai the Jew was made great (Esther 10:3) even though he did not even try to become great.
Jesus once told us the secret of true greatness. What is this secret (Matthew 18:1-4)? ____________________________________________________________________________________ If a person really wants to be exalted, what should he do (Matthew 23:12)? _______________________________________________ James tells us the same thing in James 4:10.
Heres what Mr. Humble says:
I realize that I am just me. I am just a human and I am very limited. I am not all powerful. I do not know everything. I only know very little. I am very frail and I have been made from the dust of the ground. I also know that I am not going to live forever. I realize also that I am very sinful and my heart is very wicked. I am lost and I need to be saved very much. I cannot save myself but I know that Christ can save me. I am going to trust Christ as my Saviour and Lord. I do not want people to look at me and notice me, but I want people to look at my God and notice how great He is! Instead of showing off, I want to show God off. Instead of bragging about myself, I want to brag about God and what He has done. Im very proud of my God!