(4) An high look, and a proud heart, and the plowing of the wicked, is sin.
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Some Bibles' margins may read that "plowing" can also be rendered "lamp" or "light." A light gives guidance. This verse says that, as plowing prepares the way for the earth's production, so pride prepares the way for producing other sins. Another way of looking at it is that pride is the guide that leads the way to other sins.
The "haughty look" indicates a comparison. It occurs on a person's face when he is looking down on another, showing an attitude of superiority. It illustrates comparison because perverse comparison is at the heart of this sin, pride. A person with this problem is greatly hindered from knowing God because he does not make the right comparison between God and himself.
We must perceive God as so high above us He is beyond comparison. God Himself says, "To who then will you liken Me, or to whom shall I be equal?" (Isaiah 40:25). He challenges us to make a comparison, and we can come up with nothing adequate.
He is so holy, so righteous, so pure, so intelligent, so great, so awesome, so powerful—so much of everything—that man is in far over his head when he tries to compare anything or anyone to God. Humans are only made in His image. Who knows which is greater: the difference between us and our reflection in a mirror or the difference between God and us? We know that our reflected image is not us and does not even begin to compare with what we are.
Men and women are only in the image of God. But the proud exalt themselves against God, which hinders their relationships with God. A man's perspective of God ultimately determines his perspective of men, including himself.
The dictionary defines pride as "an undue sense of one's own superiority, importance, or worth." It is "inordinate self-esteem," a word in vogue in pop psychology today. They say everybody needs self-esteem. Well, pride is an inordinate self-esteem, and its synonyms are conceit, vanity, and vainglory. Its antonyms are humility and modesty.
Consider these comparisons between words: Pride manifests itself in disdain, haughtiness, and arrogance toward others. Self-esteem gives more deference to one's opinions than others grant. Conceit is an exaggerated opinion of one's ability or worth. Vanity is an excessive desire for admiration and praise, and vainglory is undue boasting about one's accomplishments. But pride encompasses all of them.
— John W. Rite bag
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