Monday, October 26th, 2020

Freedom From Pride and Arrogance

1 Peter 5:5-101Peter 5:5 Likewise, ye younger, submit yourselves unto the elder. Yea, all of you be subject one to another, and be clothed with humility: for God resisteth the proud, and giveth grace to the humble.
1Peter 5:6 Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time:
1Peter 5:7 Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.
1Peter 5:8 Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:
1Peter 5:9 Whom resist stedfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in your brethren that are in the world.
1Peter 5:10 But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish, strengthen, settle you. KJV

1 Peter 5:5-7
Verse 5:5, in the Amplified Version speaks of being freed from Pride and Arrogance. I don't see that in this passage, the idea of being freed from them, but the concept seems true. It is also an attractive concept. That idea, of being set free, seems to be more fully played out in the following idea.

5:6 says to humble ourselves, but the end of 5:6 is not a period (at least not in the ESV & KJV, other versions end with a period), leading me to think that 5:7 is connected to 5:6.

I guess it is possible that Peter is giving a list of instructions to younger people. Submit, be humble, give your worries to God, be self controlled and watchful. But it seems possible that 5:5 through 5:10 is all one concept. In the same way that 5:1 through 5:4 is all one concept.

If 5:7 is connected to 5:6 then becoming humble must produce anxiety? Peter seems to say to humble yourselves, and then he addresses the resulting anxiety. Which would mean that pride and arrogance are a way of dealing with our doubts, fears and insecurities.

Maybe Peter was saying "I know if you become humble that your defense against anxiety will be gone, therefore cast your cares on God".

But I also read that "Casting your cares" does not mean what I thought it did. I assumed that it meant that each time an anxiety came up, I should give it to God. (Of course, in addition to that is this idea of "casting" or throwing. This I totally do not understand. Quite often my cares and anxieties feel too heavy to lift, must less to throw, but that is a different issue) But the actual translation means "once and for all". That means I am supposed to give all my cares to God one time. Past, present and future.

That would require a mental decision that I will leave my anxieties with Him before they happen, I would consider those scary issues His to deal with.

So, if this concept of "Casting your cares" is a one time event, then I have to make a decision to do it. But because I thought it was an ongoing thing, I would give them to God sometimes, take them back sometimes, and sometimes never give them at all.

It seems that maybe Peter is saying to "make a decision" to permanently become a humble person and to give your anxieties to God. It is like a decision to not be anxious because you are going to let God worry about those things that scare you, and let Him show you how to handle each thing that comes up, when it does.

But it also seems like a transaction. We are told to humble ourselves "under the mighty hand of God". So we are not just instructed to be humble, but to humble ourselves unto God. Or humble ourselves because of God. The transaction is we surrender our ability to cope with scary things by ourselves (using pride and arrogance) and we get the promise that God will take care of them.

It is like we are told to enter into an agreement. Where we sign to agree we will give up our pride and arrogance, give up our belief that we posses the answers to the things that scare us. When we sign this agreement we claim the assurance that God will take care of those things for us. It is a transfer of the burden of the causes of anxiety.

This is where the "Freedom from Pride and Arrogance" comes in. If I make a decision to humble myself, I truly do free myself because I give up one of my defenses to anxiety and make a conscious decision to allow God to handle those scary things that I was dealing with myself.

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