by Jonathan McLeod

This content is part of a series.

Humility (3 of 8)
Series: Wise Steps
Jonathan McLeod
Proverbs 29:23

One's pride will bring him low, but he who is lowly in spirit will obtain honor (Prov. 29:23).


Some Christians have developed the habit of reading one chapter of Proverbs per day. If you do that, you can read the entire book in one month (if there are 31 days in that month).

Proverbs is a book about wisdom. ''Wisdom is more a who than a what.'' The ''who'' is Jesus. He lived out the wisdom of Proverbs (e.g., nobody has been more humble than Jesus). So learning to live by the wisdom found in Proverbs is learning to live like Jesus.

[Read Proverbs 29.]


When I was a kid, one of my favourite stories was Yertle the Turtle by Dr. Seuss. Yertle said to himself, ''If I could sit high, how much greater I'd be! What a king! I'd be ruler of all that I see!'' Yertle lifted himself up (on a stack of hundreds of other turtles), but eventually he had a big fall.

The irony of pride and humility is seen in Proverbs 29:23, which says, ''One's pride will bring him low, but he who is lowly in spirit will obtain honor.'' When a person is arrogant, people wish that he'll be humbled, but when a person is humble, they wish he'll be honoured.

Pride LOWERS US, and humility LIFTS US UP.

Ray Ortlund puts it this way: ''Pride humiliates us, and humility honors us.'' This is a theme found in Proverbs and throughout the rest of Scripture.

''Toward the scorners he is scornful, but to the humble he gives favor'' (Prov. 3:34; cf. James 4:6; 1 Peter 5:5).
''When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with the humble is wisdom'' (Prov. 11:2).
''The fear of the LORD is instruction in wisdom, and humility comes before honor'' (Prov. 15:33).
''Pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall'' (Prov. 16:18).
''Before destruction a man's heart is haughty, but humility comes before honor'' (Prov. 18:12).
''The reward for h ...

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