Self-Esteem = Pride

Mark Driscoll of Mars Hill Church in Seattle, WA, preached a sermon on the doctrine of Christus Victor in his “Christ on the Cross” series about a year ago (go to the Mars Hill website, then menu -> downloads -> sermons -> topical series -> Christ on the Cross), but God has been using it today to bless my friend Gary and me.

“The root of all demonic activity is pride. A euphemism for pride is self-esteem.”

“Satan doesn’t mind if you have a high self-esteem, as long as you do evil and go to hell. . . When you sin, you’re joining Satan’s team.”

“You shouldn’t have high self-esteem or low self-esteem, you should have no self-esteem. You need to have Christ-esteem. . . (because) There’s nothing good in us to esteem.”

“Satan tempted our first parents with self-esteem, freedom, and choice the Three Great American Virtues – all demonic, all demonic. The Biblical virtues are not pride but humility, not freedom but faith, not choice but obedience.”

I’m glad someone finally concurs, because I’ve been saying this to friends, family, church members, and strangers for 3 or 4 years now (though probably not often enough). I remember protesting my last church’s youth getaway handbook because it had the line, “your Christ-centered self-esteem,” which seemed not only odd but paradoxical. You can’t esteem Him while you esteem you, and neither can I. It’s one or the other. One is pride, and the other is true humility.

(HT: Gary Beecham)


About B Treece
loved by God before I ever loved Him, saved by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone by the authority of the Bible alone to the glory of God alone, made to enjoy Him forever, happily married with wonder-filled children.

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