Pride & Destruction
Esther 5:9, "Then went Haman forth that day joyful and with a glad heart: but when Haman saw Mordecai in the king's gate, that he stood not up, nor moved for him, he was full of indignation against Mordecai."
Haman was a man full of himself, he loved power and recognition. His heart was glad when he was the only person invited to a banquet held by Queen Esther and King Ahasuerus. But when Mordecai, the Queen's uncle refused to stand and reverence him at the gate, he was filled with indignation. Haman commanded a hanging gallows to be built that was 75 feet high (Esther 5:14) and had planned to hang Mordecai thereon.
Notice the words of self-promotion in Haman's heart, "To whom would the king delight to do honour more than to myself?" (Esther 6:6) Therefore, Haman suggested how the king might honor the person he had chosen to honor, Haman suggested, "Let the royal apparel be brought which the king useth to wear, and the horse that the king rideth upon, and the crown royal which is set upon his head: 9 And let this apparel and horse be delivered to the hand of one of the king's most noble princes (that was Haman), that they may array the man withal whom the king delighteth to honour, and bring him on horseback through the street of the city, and proclaim before him, Thus shall it be done to the man whom the king delighteth to honour." (Esther 6:8-9)
Haman's presumption led him to be the one chosen to honor the one he despised the most, the Jew Mordecai. Haman's response is recorded in Esther 6:12, "...Haman hasted to his house mourning, and having his head covered." He was publicly shamed by his actions and was ultimately hanged on the very gallows he had constructed for Mordecai, "So they hanged Haman on the gallows that he had prepared for Mordecai. Then was the king's wrath pacified. (Esther 7:10)
The Bible speaks two great truths concerning Haman's pride and ultimate destruction. Proverbs 16:18, "Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall." Then in Proverbs 18:12, 'Before destruction the heart of man is haughty, and before honour is humility." You see, the path to destruction is paved with pride, while the path to honour is paved with humility. God is in control of promotion, "Lift not up your horn on high: speak not with a stiff neck. 6 For promotion cometh neither from the east, nor from the west, nor from the south. 7 But God is the judge: he putteth down one, and setteth up another." (Psalm 75:5-7) Be careful to check your heart!
QUESTIONS TO PONDER
1. Describe how people who are prideful demonstrate their pride?
2. Are there any areas in your life that the Holy Spirit is dealing with concerning pride in your life?
3. What part does acknowledgment and repentance have in Biblical change?