Boasting and Arrogance

16 As it is, you boast in your arrogance. All such boasting is evil. 17 So whoever knows the right thing to do and fails to do it, for him it is sin (James 4:16-17).

Do you know what the word “arrogant” means? Imagine someone who says, “I am the greatest! There is no one like me. I can do whatever I want, whenever I want. No one can stop me because I am so powerful.”

How would you describe that person? One word you could use would be the word, “arrogant”. The definition of someone who is arrogant is “one who has an exaggerated sense of one’s own importance or abilities.” In short, an arrogant person is one who thinks they are super important and are super capable to do whatever they want.

Does that sound like someone you would want to hang out with?

In our verses for today, James says that we become that arrogant person when we boast about all our power and ability to control our own lives apart from him. James knows that true life is found in humility before God and he commends the way of life to us.

He makes a strong statement as well. He says that when we assume that we are in control of our own lives that this type of boasting is evil. It’s not just silly misstep. It’s evil. The devil loves it when we think we don’t need God.

We should think twice when we declare with bold assurance all the things that we are going to do in the future (remember the devotional from yesterday?). May we speak in such a way that communicates our understanding of the joy of humility before God.

Read Proverbs 8:13

  • What does the Lord hate?
  • Why do you think the Lord hates those things?
  • How are you tempted towards arrogance?

Our Father, help us to forsake arrogance in our hearts. We want to have a right attitude towards you and ourselves. Help us to resist the devil who would love us to believe that we can run our own lives apart from you. We repent of our selfishness and desire for autonomy. Thank you for your word that corrects our sinful hearts. In Jesus’ name, Amen.