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Obadiah: The Deceitfulness of Pride (12 of 20)
Introduction: Proverbs says, ''Pride goes before destruction, a haughty spirit before a fall.'' (16:18) ''The way of a fool seems right to him, but a wise man listens to advice.'' (12:15)
That's the message of Obadiah. Verse 3 contains the theme, ''the pride of your heart has deceived you.'' The little book of Obadiah is all about the deceitfulness of pride and its horrible consequences. The book is the smallest in the Old Testament with only twenty-one verses. But behind it lies a powerful message for men and nations. The words were addressed to Israel's neighbor nation Edom, but they could just as easily be targeted at any of us. Pride does that! It deceives and blinds. Sometimes with deadly consequences!
During the Battle of the Wilderness in the Civil War, Union general John Sedgwick was inspecting his troops. At one point he came to a lookout point on the fortress, over which he gazed out in the direction of the enemy. His officers suggested that this was unwise and perhaps he ought to stay behind something while on the wall. ''Nonsense,'' snapped the general. ''They couldn't hit an elephant at this dist--.'' A moment later Sedgwick fell to the ground, fatally wounded. (Today in the Word, August 30, 1993)
Over confidence is a dangerous thing! Take the nursing home in Florida where a group of residents were discussing all their ailments. ''My arms are so weak I can hardly lift this cup of coffee.'' ''Yes, I know my cataracts are so bad I can't even see my coffee.'' ''I can't turn my head because of the arthritis in my neck!'' ''My Blood pressure pills make me dizzy.'' ''Well, I guess that's just the price we pay for getting old.''
Everyone agreed, except one woman who said, ''Well, it's not that bad! Thank God, we can all still drive!''
Pride and self-confidence deceives, Obadiah will say. Did you hear about the clever salesman who closed hundreds of sales with this l ...
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