Monday, January 11, 2010

Chapter 1: From Kings to Captivity

The first chapter starts of by us looking at four kings during Isaiah's time:
1. Uzziah
2. Jotham
3. Ahaz
4. Hezekiah

These are just some of my notes as I read about them:

1. Uzziah
And as long as he sought the Lord, God gave him success.
2 Chronicles 26:5b

Success in man's eyes compared to what God considers success are so different. King Uzziah appears to be the portrait of success-a king, rich, powerful, in control, conqueror, builder, overseer of many workers, commander of many soldiers. But he was not a success in God's eyes.

When we stop seeking the Lord, we no longer depend on Him but on our own strength(which in reality is nothing). Uzziah's pride led to his downfall (2 Chronicles 2:16) and it will lead to ours as well. Independence from God and dependence on ourselves equals destruction!

2. Jotham

The high places, however, were not removed; the people continue to offer sacrifices and burn incense there. 2 Kings 15:35a

What you tolerate/condone, you will accept and thus practice yourself. Jotham built and rebuilt (2 Chronicles 27:3-4), but he overlooked tearing down. Let us not get so involved in building and rebuilding lest we forget that there are things that have to be torn down first. Otherwise, these things will infiltrate and destroy the foundation causing our destruction or that of our children.

3. Ahaz
His decision not to do what was right in the eyes of the Lord led to him being handed over to the enemy, being defeated and many of his people taken as prisoners, had heavy casualties inflicted on him (2 Chronicles 28:1-5). A decision to disobey God is costly to us and those around us.

4. Hezekiah
Letting your guard down will lead you to compromise. Man's praise will become more important than God's. (2 Chronicles 32:31)


And now that we have looked at the destructiveness of pride in their lives, let us look at its affect in ours.

On page 277 Question #3, we are asked:

How does pride raise its ugly head in your life?


Forgiveness.
Or better yet, the lack of forgiveness on my part, specifically towards my husband has been my biggest battle with pride. And he agrees, since I asked him to answer this question on my behalf.

Let me tell you what unforgiveness had caused in my life. During the first part of our marriage, things were hellish. We often said things in the heat of the flesh that were hurtful to one another. Because I knew I had to forgive him according to Matthew 6:15 or I wouldn't be forgiven by the Father, I would say that I forgave him. However, I had already acquired and deposited the pain deep within my heart, letting it make a home there. That is not forgiveness. So although I had the head knowledge I had to forgive, it was not a revelation. I was hurt and was not taking it to the Lord. Because I was too prideful to admit that my husband's words had actually hurt me, I was not coming before the presence of the Lord seeking healing. I was not being sincere with Him. I was holding on to the offense instead of holding onto to Jesus. And although I do not have a complete revelation on forgiveness, I do ask the Lord to help me forgive as He forgives.

As Hubby and I were discussing this pride issue, I inquired of the Lord why was unforgiveness prideful. He answered,

"The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ."
(2 Corinthians 10:4-5)

I understood. Every time I choose not to forgive God's way, I am declaring that my way is better. I entertain demonic thoughts about my husband and thus harbor hatred in my heart. This becomes a stronghold in my life. Thus I am captive.

This helps me to understand the danger of pride through unforgiveness in my life. Lord help me! I had to endure a lot of ministration due to the hurt I chose to keep in my heart. This endangered my marriage, but more importantly my salvation. I don't want to go back. After discussing this with my husband I confessed my pride and asked for his help. I asked that when he asks for forgiveness to leave it there, at the foot of the cross, and allow me to leave it there too. I don't want him to think he has to "do" something (I was infamous for wanting to see fruit worthy of repentance) to receive forgiveness. I actually asked him, "Honey, let me just say I forgive you and leave it there. Don't ask me anything or do anything. Well, kiss me on the forehead or just throw me a kiss if you're driving and leave it alone." I'm one of those that enjoys silence to talk to the Lord so that I can register things.

So I'm tackling this head on, no room for pride through unforgiveness with Holy Spirit's help in Jesus' name!

So, what did the Holy Spirit reveal to you about you? How do you answer the question:

How does pride raise its ugly head in your life?

3 comments:

  1. Thank you Holy Spirit.
    Sister thank you for sharing your experience.
    I never thought that pride was a big problem for me, because I always make the decision to forgive no matter what was done, but we know that the heart is deceitful. However Idolatry was a big problem in my life. I will continue to ask God to search my heart, I want God to point out anything and everything ( pride, idolatry, high places, or unbelief )that can be an obstacle to enjoy the freedom and life in abundance Jesus died to give us.

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  2. Amen, Maria...I too want the Holy Spirit to reveal anything and everything that hinders me getting closer to God. We know the enemy tries to enter subtly so we must be on the alert. However, praise the Lord, that even if we miss something, He does not!!!! It is His desire for us to be free and stay free!

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  3. Hooray...my book arrived today, I was so excited to get it. Ok so as I sat trying to evaluate the question I believe in my Christian walk my biggest hurdle was unbelief, I did not believe that I deserved God's blessings, or calling, or anything even though He had received me as His daughter. Pride however is something that I try to correct in my life on the daily with the help of the Holy Spirit. I know that with me it was that I didn't want to fit in I wanted to stay the same Michelle but just Christian, so the Lord had to break that (btw I'm still under construction) and renew my mind, I am a new creature in Christ, and continue to learn and grow in Christ and die to self daily!

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May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, O LORD, my Rock and my Redeemer. Psalm 19:14