Pride: The Root of All Spiritual Sinkholes, Part 2

At the end of the days, I, Nebuchadnezzar, lifted my eyes to heaven, and my reason returned to me, and I blessed the Most High, and praised and honored Him who lives forever,


for His dominion is an everlasting dominion,

    and His kingdom endures from generation to generation;

all the inhabitants of the earth are accounted as nothing,

    and He does according to His will among the host of heaven

    and among the inhabitants of the earth;

and none can stay His hand

    or say to Him, “What have you done?”


At the same time, my reason returned to me, and for the glory of my kingdom, my majesty and splendor returned to me. My counselors and my lords sought me, and I was established in my kingdom, and still, more greatness was added to me. Now I, Nebuchadnezzar, praise and extol and honor the King of Heaven, for all His works are right, and His ways are just; and those who walk in pride He is able to humble.


Daniel 4:34-37



If you’ve watched the news lately, you’ve seen what happened at Ponce de Leon. We saw a sinkhole and a poor white SUV stuck in it. While this was something that happened physically, we are learning it can also happen spiritually.


In past weeks, we’ve described sinkholes as ubiquitous - that anytime, anywhere, one could find themselves stuck in one. The same is true spiritually. The spiritual foundation of our lives can cave in, and we can find ourselves stuck in a spiritual sinkhole.


Among all the sinkholes we can experience, none is as wide as that of pride. Pride causes us to believe we’re greater than we really are. Pride causes us to be full of ourselves, and we begin to believe our personal resumes and the story we put out about ourselves on social media, which is often a misrepresentation of who we really are.


You may recall we mentioned five key phrases and words we cannot speak when we’re full of pride:


“I’m sorry,” “I was wrong,” “I need help,” “I forgive you,” “I love you,” and “It was me.”


As we’ve dealt with the topic of pride, we’ve considered the case study of the life of Nebuchadnezzar in Daniel 4. We’ve learned that pride is deceptive—it causes you to be full of yourself–and pride is also very destructive.




Today, we’re learning about the profile of pride. What are some of the characteristics that we can identify as the presence of pride in us?


The declaration of being self-made


“And the king answered and said, “Is not this great Babylon, which I have built by my mighty power as a royal residence and for the glory of my majesty?”


Daniel 4:30


A person full of themselves often engages in a declaration of being self-made, like Nebuchadnezzar in Daniel 4:30. Beware of people who are always talking about how they’ve made it. There would be no “self-made,” successful people if it weren’t for God.


The disillusionment of self-importance


When someone has “made it,” there’s a high chance they also will believe that because they’ve made it, they’re now important. This arrogance is an illusion of self-importance, thinking they’re “all that.”


The deification of self-idolatry


Deification means to give honor and worship of oneself. We see this in King Nebuchadnezzar’s life in Daniel 4, where he asked everyone in his kingdom to bow down before the golden image scholars argue was an image of himself. One of the worst forms of idolatry is when you idolize yourself and what you’ve done and achieved.


The dismissal of self-confrontation


Search me, O God, and know my heart! Try me and know my thoughts!

And see if there be any grievous way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting!


Psalm 139:23-24


Self-confrontation is the idea of examining one’s attitude, behavior, or shortcomings to provide an impetus to change. But when you’re full of pride, you dismiss all self-confrontation. You spend your life confronting everybody else, and the one person you will not confront is yourself. You will find fault with everybody but yourself.


The domination with self-reliance


You have this utter reliance not on God, not on others, but on yourself. You trust in yourself alone and not in God.


The drivenness by self-protection


You become protective of your own interests. You don’t care who you trample over. You don’t care about anyone else’s feelings but yours because you’re selfish.


The disintegration by self-destruction


Pride goes before destruction and a haughty spirit before a fall.


Proverbs 16:18


This last point is where everything culminates: disintegration by self-destruction. With pride, you have no other outcome but self-destruction, as said in Proverbs 16:18.





Nebuchadnezzar was on the road to self-destruction and his inevitable fall because of pride. Let’s discuss the real penalty of pride.


Loss of sanity


Nebuchadnezzar lost it all. He was humbled, broken, banished from the throne, and even lost his sanity. Likewise, we would be insane if we didn’t recognize that everything we have and everything we are now is all because of God. We would be insane if we didn’t acknowledge how the hand of God has been moving in our lives, keeping us from danger, both seen and unseen.


Loss of security


The first penalty of pride is losing your sanity. The second thing you’ll lose is your sense of security. Everything that Nebuchadnezzar thought gave him security he lost. Daniel 4:37 shows that God knows how to make us humble.


Loss of serenity


When you lose your sanity and security, you lose your serenity. You lose your sense of peace, fulfillment, and contentment to the extent you become paranoid. Your life has become inundated with anxiety because you put your trust in everything but God.


You can thank God for things like your job, but don’t trust in it alone. Put your trust in God where it belongs.





Thank God that He’s given us a prescription for pride. We see from verses 34 to 37 this prescription. The truth is, all of us, at some point, will need it. Once upon a time, we’ve all been a little too proud.


Repent of your sin before God


Sometimes, the greatest blessing that God can give us is putting us on our backs because when you’re on your back, all you can do is look up. When you’re on your back is when you can see heaven clearest.


Recognize the sovereignty of God


Nebuchadnezzar realized that God is the Most High. His kingdom is everlasting, and God does everything according to His will. Nebuchadnezzar finally acknowledged that God was the true King and not him.


Remember, success comes from God


God can bring us down to a stump just like Nebuchadnezzar so that He can have our undivided attention, so that we can trust Him this time that when He blesses us, we know exactly where our blessings come from. We know now who we give glory to—to God alone.





We serve a God who can restore. We believe in a God that restores. He can restore what you have lost. He can restore your family, finances, and every facet of your life. My advice? Get out of the way, and let God restore.


When you’re dealing with pride, resolve to submit everything to God. This time, you’ve got to be honest. It’s all God. Everything belongs to God. We can’t take credit for anything. All glory and praise belong to Him.

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