Summary: A sermon that speaks to the dangers we face from pride.
“A Prescription for Pride”
(2Co 12:1) It is not expedient for me doubtless to glory. I will come to visions and revelations of the Lord.
(2Co 12:2) I knew a man in Christ above fourteen years ago, (whether in the body, I cannot tell; or whether out of the body, I cannot tell: God knoweth;) such an one caught up to the third heaven.
(2Co 12:3) And I knew such a man, (whether in the body, or out of the body, I cannot tell: God knoweth;)
(2Co 12:4) How that he was caught up into paradise, and heard unspeakable words, which it is not lawful for a man to utter.
(2Co 12:5) Of such an one will I glory: yet of myself I will not glory, but in mine infirmities.
(2Co 12:6) For though I would desire to glory, I shall not be a fool; for I will say the truth: but now I forbear, lest any man should think of me above that which he seeth me to be, or that he heareth of me.
(2Co 12:7) And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure.
(2Co 12:8) For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me.
(2Co 12:9) And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
(2Co 12:10) Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ's sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong.
(2Co 12:11) I am become a fool in glorying; ye have compelled me: for I ought to have been commended of you: for in nothing am I behind the very chiefest apostles, though I be nothing.
(2Co 12:12) Truly the signs of an apostle were wrought among you in all patience, in signs, and wonders, and mighty deeds.
INTRODUCTION: One of the biggest issues faced by believers is how can we stay humble; how can we stay away from the pitfalls of pride; how can we keep from thinking too much of ourselves and not enough of God? The Scriptures have a great deal to say about humility and pride. What are some of things we know about pride? 1 John 2:16 For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. Proverbs 11:2 When pride cometh, then cometh shame…Proverbs 16:18 Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall. Proverbs 29:23 A man's pride shall bring him low…Pride will cause to do all kinds of things. I read a story entitled:
ILL - PRIDE AT THE DONUT SHOP
I was living in Phoenix at the time and on my way to work I stopped at a Dunkin Donuts drive through. I said to the woman at the window, "I'll have 3 cake donuts and a cup of coffee."
She started mumbling something that I couldn't hear. I thought she may be able to hear me if she opened that window. It was early, I hadn't had my coffee and was getting annoyed. OK, I was annoyed.
AGAIN, cake donuts and coffee, again I hear her mumbling through the glass. I thought "I'm going to have to stick my head through the window of hers and let everyone know inside the restaurant what I WANT!" and of course I did.
I leaned forward to tell her what I thought, and SMACK. She had not forgotten to pull her window open--I had forgotten to roll down my window! I hit my head on my window so hard I saw stars. She started laughing and I can't tell you how embarrassed I was. I finally got my 3 cake donuts and my coffee and drove sheepishly away with her still laughing.
The Apostle Paul faced this dilemma and gives us much insight and information about his experience.
I. The Glory v. 1-4
a. The description v. 1
Just after having been let down in a basket at the end of chapter 11.
b. The danger
To glory in what he or others had experienced.
c. The determination
Not to glory in self, but in infirmities.
II. The Goad v. 5-7a
a. The placement of the thorn v. 7a
Who gave Paul the thorn? The answer may make you uncomfortable. Even thoug it is described as a “…messenger of Satan…” it didn’t come from Satan. God sent this thorn to Paul. Remember who he was praying to. Sometimes the thorn can be a person or a thing or a problem of some kind. For Paul it was a man named Alexander the Coppersmith: 2 Timothy 4:14 Alexander the coppersmith did me much evil: the Lord reward him according to his works: For the Apostle John it was a man named Diotrephes: 3 John 1:9 I wrote unto the church: but Diotrephes, who loveth to have the preeminence among them, receiveth us not.