DEAR REV. GRAHAM: I don’t see why some people say that pride is a sin. After all, if we take pride in our work, or if we’re proud of something we’ve accomplished in life, what’s wrong with that?
— D.W.P. DEAR D.W.P.: It’s not necessarily wrong to have a sense of accomplishment over something we’ve done well. After all, God wants us to do our best, and if we don’t take pride in what we do, we might end up being satisfied with something less than our best — or worse. The writer of Ecclesiastes declared, “A person can do nothing better than to … find satisfaction in their own toil. This too, I see, is from the hand of God” (Ecclesiastes 2:24).
But pride becomes a sin when it turns into arrogance and self-centeredness. When pride controls our lives, we end up thinking we are better than anyone else. Prideful people also have little love or compassion for others, and are only interested in themselves. Most of all, a prideful person thinks they have little need for God, believing their way is always best. This is why pride is at the root of almost every other sin, because we think we can ignore God’s ways. No wonder the Bible says, “The Lord detests all the proud of heart” (Proverbs 16:5).
Don’t let pride, or anything else, keep you from God. Instead, ask God to help you see yourself the way He sees you — as someone who has sinned against Him, and desperately needs His forgiveness. Then by faith turn to Jesus Christ, asking Him to forgive you, and thanking Him for His love.
In addition, ask God to help you see others the way He sees them. God loves them just as much as He loves you, and He wants to use you to tell them of His love. Write to Billy Graham in care of Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, 1 Billy Graham Parkway, Charlotte, N.C. 28201 or visit the website at billygraham.org