November 13, 2022 – Pastor Mark Albrecht
Message Big Idea – King Nebuchadnezzar elevated himself in his own eyes, grounding his pride in insufficient and earthly sources. Yet, God, in His sovereignty, loved this proud Babylonian king. In the same way, the Lord loves us in spite of our in-grained and persistent pride. So, the challenge becomes this: will we continually humble ourselves before Him or wait to be humbled by Him, in this life or the next?
- Take a moment to reflect (if you are going through this on your own) or share (if you are with others in a group setting): What are you grateful for today? What are you struggling with today?
- Have you ever been wrong, maybe even embarrassingly so? Share a humorous time when you had to “eat a slice of humble pie.”
- Read Daniel 4 (Read twice – ESV and either NLT or Message)
- Go around the group and briefly retell the passage in your own words.
- What word or phrase “jumped off the page” and intrigued you the most? Why?
- We see in Daniel 4:30 a prideful declaration from King Nebuchadnezzar. His source of pride centered on the beautiful city of Babylon and its place atop an expansive empire. What are some common sources of pride we observe in the culture today (e.g. money, fame, power, etc.)? Where are these sources present? At the leadership level? At a personal level? Familial? National?
- After his prideful declaration, King Nebuchadnezzar quickly learned how fleeting and tenuous his source of pride was when compared to God’s sovereignty. In relation to the common sources of pride discussed previously, how have you observed them to fail those who place their trust in them? What is the common result? How do people react when their source of pride disappears?
- When has God humbled you by illuminating a source a pride in your life? What was that experience like? How has it impacted your attitude and behavior going forward?
- Now, take a moment to examine and share your personal sources of pride right now (everyone has at least one!). Instead of using “they/them” language, use “I/me” verbiage. (Leaders: encourage vulnerability by opening up first)
- Andrew Murray, a minister from South Africa, said, “As we see how in their very nature pride and faith are irreconcilable at variance, we shall learn that faith and humility are at root one, and that we never can have more of true faith than we have of true humility.” Reflect on the relationship of humility and faith in Christ. Why do you think faith and humility are so tightly connected? How does the Gospel consistently inspire humility in the Christian life?
Live It Out:
- What is one thing God seems to be asking you to do in response to this passage? (i.e., “I will ….”)
- Who can you tell about this “I will” statement in the next 48 hours?
- Journal about your time in God’s Word this week. Stop to listen to what He might be telling you. Celebrate His presence through His Word!
- Spend some time in intentional prayer. Present your sources of pride before God. Humble yourself now rather than waiting to be humbled. Thank the Father for his patience and long-suffering toward your sin. Praise Christ as your sole source of boasting. Invite the Holy Spirit to continually instill faithful humility in your daily life. Amen!