Listen again to BBC Radio Ulster Thought For The Day

Have you ever heard any of these sayings: –

  • “Am I my brother’s keeper?”
  • “Land of milk and honey”,
  • “A man after my own heart” or
  • ‘How the mighty have fallen”!

If so, it may interest you to know that they all come straight from the Bible.

It’s the saying “Pride comes before a fall’ that I would like us to think about today, and that’s from the book of Proverbs Ch 16 v18.

“Pride comes before destruction and a haughty spirit before a fall.”

I remember once being part of a youth group on one of the sunniest days of the year when one of the girls got the biggest ice-cream cone you have ever seen in your life! It was enormous! She came out of the shop beaming and boasting about the incredible size of her ‘99’, when suddenly before she even had the chance to get a lick, a giant seagull swept down, and whisked it out of her hands and swept away cackling with its sweet gotten spoils. I don’t think we ever laughed so much in all our lives at the expression on her face.

It still makes me smile today.

We can all think of stories like that. “Pride comes before destruction and a haughty spirit before a fall”.

C.S. Lewis once said, “A proud person is always looking down on things and people; and, of course, as long as you are looking down, you cannot see something that is above you.”

That’s why Jesus’s example is such a powerful antidote to pride, who although he was in very nature God, chose instead to be humble even to death on a cross. When our eyes are fixed on Jesus we can no longer be focussed on ourselves.

– Frank Sellar