Let's look at Haman, the person the Persian king most honored (Esther 3:1-6, 6:1-10).
The exiled Jews seemed to do well in Persia (Esther 6:13). When the king of Persia required everyone to kneel and honor him, and when Mordecai, a Jew, didn’t comply, Haman planned to use this as an opportunity to kill all the Jews in Persia.
Previously, Mordecai had warned the king of an assassination attempt. Having been reminded of Mordecai’s loyalty, the king decided to reward him and asked Haman how to do so. Believing himself to be the recipient, Haman suggested something extravagant, and the king commanded Haman to personally deliver the reward to Mordecai. That gave Haman a lot of grief and began his downfall, ultimately leading to his death.
An arrogant person is only concerned with himself. Everything is about him.
This person always considers himself to be right. Since he thinks he makes no mistakes, he can’t learn from his own failure or others’ criticism, which leads to more serious blunders.
This person tends to hold grudges. He assumes he would never commit the wrongs that others do, and so he is less inclined to forgive.
The humble will be exalted, while the arrogant who always tries to lift himself higher will be humiliated (Matthew 23:12).
So how can we rid ourselves of arrogance, particularly when it is so difficult for a person to recognize his own shortcomings?
First, we must admit that we tend to be self-centered and arrogant. Remember that the conceited rarely think themselves as such.
Second, know that we are sinful and corrupted. There is nothing in us that we should be proud of. On the other hand, we should not feel inferior and needy because through Christ, we have God’s recognition and glory, the glory Christ received from God the Father (John 17:22)!
To conclude, know that we are filled with defects, yet because of Christ, we have God’s glory and praises. Though we are confident and proud of our status, there is nothing we should be arrogant about. So, we should focus less on ourselves and more on others.
Adapted from a Tim Keller sermon: