Proverbs in 365 Devotions
Proverbs 16:18 Pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall. 19 It is better to be of a lowly spirit with the poor than to divide the spoil with the proud. 20 Whoever gives thought to the word will discover good, and blessed is he who trusts in the Lord.
Precursor Of A Fall
Alright… well, pride goes before destruction… Maybe you’re like me and have heard this quoted many times. Solomon talks about a proud person in both verses 18 and 19.
First verse 18 speaks of pride going before destruction but also how a haughty spirit goes before a fall. To be haughty is defined as being arrogantly superior and disdainful in your ways and I’m pretty sure that sums up what it means to be prideful. Also haughty is listed as a synonym for pride. So… from verse 18 it seems pride is like… a precursor to both disasters through life but also destruction…
And then in verse 19 Solomon speaks of this person who is apparently also proud but also a companion with others who are proud… and they divide the spoil together. I take that to mean at least all the spoil gained by injustice done in taking advantage of others that Solomon has already spoken of in this chapter.
I mean, even today if we look around in life and see haughty, disdainful, arrogant people seeming to succeed and gain riches and lands and great positions of power… these are people obsessed with a kind of greed that obscures the ability to love others… And we can see them dividing the spoil with others who are proud. So where is their fall and where is their destruction in verse 19?
Well, I think there is a hint of the coming destruction waiting for them in the phrase (quote) “It is better” ...“It is better to be of a lowly spirit”.
So it is better to be humble and meek than to be rich and proud. And Solomon even adds an extra multiplying factor to highlight how much better it is. He basically says it’s better to be humble even when you live with the poor than rich and companions of the proud. That does not mean that all people of lowly heart are poor… but it does show dramatically how much better Solomon indicates that it is to be humble than prideful.
Still, this does not expound on why it is better to be humble than rich and prideful dividing the spoil.
So we turn to verse 20 which says:
Whoever gives thought to the word will discover good, and blessed is he who trusts in the Lord.
So in these few verses Solomon does not give us all the details of how the prideful and haughty who we see all around us dividing the spoil will come to an end… But he has said it is better to be humble and now he says how it is better if these who are humble meditate on Gods word and trust in the Lord… they will be blessed and discover good.
It takes humility to say we have failed… and in actuality the prideful have already experienced some of their falling. By not finding their hope in the Messiah all they have to keep them from a bad end on Judgment day is their own righteousness to hope in and that will lead them to destruction.
In that sense its the same today as it was in Solomons day. They were to believe and be joyful in the coming of the Messiah and we believe and find our delight in Jesus who came, lived a righteous life, was paid the wages of my sin with his death on the Cross and rose again giving us power and victory over sins hold in life and death.
Thank You Father for this amazing gift of grace for all who look in delight to Your Son Jesus Christ.