Summary: Pride has caused the fall of many people, nations and churches. Sometimes it sneaks up on you before you see it coming.
As dead flies give perfume a bad smell,
so a little folly outweighs wisdom and honor.
Intro: A young woman asked for an appointment with her pastor to talk with him about a besetting sin about which she was worried. When she saw him, she said, "Pastor, I have become aware of a sin in my life which I cannot control. Every time I am at church I begin to look around at the other women, and I realize that I am the prettiest one in the whole congregation. None of the others can compare with my beauty. What can I do about this sin?"
The pastor replied, "Mary, that’s not a sin, why that’s just a mistake!"
Today in the Word, August 30, 1993.
V. 15 Since cities at this time were walled one of the most successful ways to attack a city was to bring it under siege and starve out the city. Sieges were very long and tedious. Sometimes a city would stay under siege for years, Troy sustained a siege of ten years. With these catapults Uzziah could destroy city walls from a distance and fight off besieging armies that surrounded his cities.
V. 16 Instead of having a thankful heart towards all God had done for him, he had a prideful and self exalted view of self. After gaining so many honors he began to thank there was no honor too great for him. But the question that comes to my mind is why this? Maybe he felt the priest where truly giving it 100%. Or it might have been that he desired to be like the pagan kings who approached their alters with freedom.
For Uzziah to burn incense before the Lord was against the Mosaic Law. Only the sons of Aaron where given this privilege. Uzziah could’ve blessed the people, lead them in prayer or preached to them.
V.19 What man couldn’t do with words, God did with action. The priest in no way could convince Uzziah to not to burn incense in the Temple but God not only stopped him cold in his tracks He sent Uzziah running out of the Temple.
Illust: 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 parapet, over which he gazed out in the direction of the enemy. His officers suggested that this was unwise and perhaps he ought to duck while passing the parapet. "Nonsense," snapped the general. "They couldn’t hit an elephant at this dist--." A moment later Sedgwick fell to the ground, fatally wounded.
Illust: God wisely designed the human body so that we can neither pat our own backs nor kick ourselves too easily.
Illust: A recent news release told of a Charlotte, North Carolina, woman who set a world record while playing a convenience store video game. After standing in front of the game for fourteen hours and scoring an unprecedented seven and a half million points on the game called "Tapper," the woman was pleased to see a TV crew arriving to record her efforts for posterity. She continued to play while the crew, alerted by her fiancé, prepared to shoot. However, she was appalled to see the video screen suddenly go blank. While setting up their lights, the camera team had accidentally unplugged the game, thus bringing her bid for ten million points to an untimely end! The effort to publicize her achievement became the agent of her ultimate failure.
The fact that the king of all people was struck with leprosy was a powerful illustration of the Holiness of God and His Temple. This served as an example to those under the king that God is to be honored as holy.
(1.) Pride was at the bottom of his transgression, and thus God humbled him and put dishonor upon him.
(2.) He invaded the office of the priests in contempt of them, and God struck him with a disease which in a particular manner made him subject to the inspection and sentence of the priests; for to them pertained the judgment of the leprosy, Deut 24:8.
(3.) He invaded the dignity of the priesthood, which he had no right to, and for that he was deprived even of his royal dignity, which he had a right to. Those that covet forbidden honors forfeit allowed ones. Adam, by catching at the tree of knowledge of which he might not eat, debarred himself from the tree of life, of which he might have eaten. Let all that read it say, The Lord is righteous.
1. Sometimes God will send us into a storm with the purpose of breaking our pride.
22Immediately Jesus made the disciples get into the boat and go on ahead of him to the other side, while he dismissed the crowd.