10 Indicators of Arrogance
G. Gordon Liddy, a Watergate conspirator, spoke these words after his release from prison in 1977: “I have found within myself all I need and all I ever shall need. I am a man of great faith, but my faith is in G. Gordon Liddy. I have never failed me.”
Holy cow! Isn’t that the second craziest thing you’ve heard today? I don’t think I could stomach being around Gordon very long. How in the world can anybody be that self-absorbed?
Well I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but it happens all the time. And I know most of us think narcissism is a new thing, but truthfully it’s an age-old problem. Listen to this: “But Hezekiah’s heart was proud and he did not respond to the kindness shown him…” (2 Chronicles 32:25). Hezekiah was a king back in the Old Testament. He was good and godly and there was no other king like him. At one point he was about to die, so he prayed, and God gave him an extra 15 years of life. But rather than being appreciative, he became arrogant.
So how does a good, godly king blow it like Hezekiah did? I don’t really know. But what I do know is this: pride is a creeping vine called “me, myself, and I.” And if not rooted out right away, this creeping vine can spread and take over our good and godly character. Just ask Hezekiah. And Solomon. And David. And the Pharisees. And the Disciples.
As I ponder the arrogant people in Scripture, they’re not at all different than the self-absorbed people I know today. As they say, “it takes one to know one.” So I’m ashamed to say I see myself all over these character traits. As I reflect on the issue of pride, I’ve come up with 10 indicators of arrogance. Ten characteristics that indicate we might have a slight issue with arrogance. Check it out:
10 Indicators of Arrogance:
- Deceived into believing we are “flawless” or not as flawed as others
- Trusting in our own strength, knowledge, talents, skills, etc.
- Stubborn, rebellious, and unwilling to submit to authority
- Ungrateful for the kindness, grace, and/or mercy shown to us
- Blind to our own faults and/or to the needs of others
- An entitlement attitude which insists we deserve better, deserve more, etc.
- Comparing ourselves to other people and looking for opportunities to claim greater importance
- Wanting our agenda to prevail over others’ (…or even God’s)
- Inconveniencing others for the sake of our own convenience
- Life is about us and our glory, not God and His glory
Do these things describe people you know? Most assuredly they do.
Do they describe you? I know…you don’t want to answer that.
Hezekiah was a good and godly king, but for a season got caught up in a vine of pride. The cruddy thing is that we’re all guilty just like him. We all have a pride issue. And if we have a pride issue, we have a sin issue. And if we have a sin issue, we need a Savior.
Though God detests the proud of heart (Proverbs 16:5), He loves us too much too leave us there.
Hezekiah humbled himself and repented of his arrogance (2 Chronicles 32:26). God was merciful and forgave him. The same God who loved and forgave Hezekiah offers us forgiveness as well. And though we may not be kings, by God’s grace, we can continue our journey onward to being good and godly in the every day.