The Bible speaks of a king named Nebuchadnezzar in the land of Babylonia who, within the first ten years of his reign, had become powerful enough to defeat and conquer the country of Judah including the city of Jerusalem which was fortified by King David and his descendants who ruled after him.
On conquering Jerusalem he ruthlessly killed the inhabitants and took about 18,000 people captive back to Babylonia of whom Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego were few. Daniel records a few of the king’s extravagant activities, including the building of a Golden Image.
The context to the gold statue was thus: the king saw disturbing dreams that no magicians could know or interpret. But God revealed the dream and the interpretation to Daniel. In the dream he had seen a huge statue of a man with a golden head and its body made of silver, bronze, iron and clay. This great statue was seen being destroyed by a rock. God spoke to the king through Daniel who explained what the dream meant. The golden head represented King Nebuchadnezzar and his kingdom, whom God called king of kings! And the other elements were subsequent kings and kingdoms. The stone was to represent Jesus Christ, who would bring the Kingdom of God upon the earth.
From the passage it becomes clear that it was God who had appointed Nebuchadnezzar for His divine purposes. However, Nebuchadnezzar, proud of his splendor and majesty, aspired to surpass his God-given position of honor, and decided go beyond it. He did so by making a statue just like the one he dreamt of, but made it purely of gold, from head to toe. Not only that, he also passed a decree that his nation was to bow down before it, emphasizing that he was invincible and that no other king or kingdom could overpower him.
That was the first and the only step leading to his downfall.
As a child of God, one thing you and I should always remember is that the place where God places you is where you belong to. If you try to go higher or fly higher, you always end up in scary situations.
We all know how the story proceeds. Nebuchadnezzar becomes deranged, was driven away from men and lived like the beast of the field far away from human inhabitation. Only when he returned to humbling himself before God and acknowledging His sovereignty over his life, that he was restored back to the kingdom.
Many would agree with me if I say that the pride of life is the deepest and most difficult of all things to win over! If a wicked king like Nebuchadnezzar could get over his pride and live in humility, so can you and I!
I would in future posts love to talk more about the ‘Hows’ of dealing with pride. But for now, can I ask you to inspect your heart to find that one thing where you seek self promotion or self exaltation? We would love to hear more about your battle with Pride! Please feel free to share in the comments below.