Introduction: What does it mean to have a “good name?” We had some
visitors in our class last week. Their last name was “Carrington.”
Some would say that is a good name. When I was growing up, the people
who owned the garbage service had the last name “Smelling.” Some
might prefer “Carrington.” Let’s jump in and find out what the Bible
means when it refers to a “good name!”
- A Good Name
- Read Proverbs 22:1. Does this verse give us two different
ideas, or does it repeat the same idea in a slightly
different way? (It repeats the same idea. Our lesson
points out (Tuesday) this is called “parallelism” in
- If these are parallel ideas, what is meant by a “good
name” according to Solomon? (Since this text repeats
the idea, a good name is the same as being
- Do you want to be esteemed? In case others fail to esteem
you, should you do it yourself? (We will look at that
later in our lesson!)
- God’s Good Name
- Is God concerned about His name? (Read Exodus 20:7.)
- Can you give me examples of how someone could misuse
- Read Proverbs 30:5-6. Have you ever heard someone add
to God’s words? Is that a misuse of His name? (Yes!
We proclaim our ideas as “truth” in God’s name. I
think music is an excellent example of this. Some
churches are torn apart by disagreement over the type
of music or type of instruments used in worship – a
topic on which the Bible is virtually silent.)
- Should we boldly proclaim that those who go
beyond the Bible and create requirements in
disputable areas are sinners? (Look again at
Proverbs 30:6. The text says God will do the
- Read Proverbs 14:31. How else can we misuse God’s
- Pride and Our Good Name
- We hear a lot from our culture about the need for self-esteem. On the other hand, the Bible speaks strongly
against pride. Is self-esteem good or is it just pride?
- Can you think of any Bible texts that encourage self-esteem? Let’s look at one I think speaks to self-esteem.
Read Luke 12:6-9. Does God tell us that we have self-worth?
- Is self-worth the same as self-esteem?
- On what does our self-worth depend? (Our relationship
- Read Proverbs 11:2. Why does disgrace follow pride? Why
do you think wisdom arises out of humility?
- How would you go about summarizing the message that
arises out of Luke 12:7 and Proverbs 11:2? Or, do you
find that impossible?
- Read Proverbs 15:25. This makes God the active agent in
attacking the proud. Why would God do that?
- What do you think is God’s opinion of pride? (Read
Proverbs 6:16-19. What are “haughty eyes?” (Pride –
and letting your pride be known. God detests pride.)
- As you think about the stories recorded in the Bible,
how serious a sin is pride? Can you give
examples?(Read Ezekiel 28:14-17. To whom does this
text refer? (This is commonly understood to refer to
Lucifer – Satan.)
- What part did pride play in his original sin?
- Read Genesis 3:2-6. What part did pride play in the
fall of man?
- Read Proverbs 13:10. What part does pride play in an
unhappy marriage? Unhappy working conditions?
- Is your opinion better or worse than others? What
does the Bible suggest on this?
- It is common in business to believe that if you do not
explain your accomplishments, no one else will. Is
“tooting your own horn” appropriate? (Read Proverbs 27:2.)
- What do you think is the basis for this advice?
- Is pride an easy sin to recognize? We have learned that
pride is detestable to God. Is pride also detestable to
man so that those who are proud naturally feel sorry for
their sins? (Read Proverbs 26:12. “He who falls into some
of the grosser sins may feel a sense of shame and poverty
and his need of the grace of Christ; but pride feels no
need, and so it closes the heart against Christ and the
blessings He came to give. E.G. White, Steps to Christ,
- How can pride interfere with you having a good name?
- How can we understand our self-worth in God’s eyes without
slipping into pride?
- Pride and Life
- Read Proverbs 18:10-11. We have a contrast between two
places of protection. What is the difference between the
“strong tower” and the “fortified city.”
- Is Solomon saying that money will not protect? (Money
does protect – it is not, however, perfect
protection, an “unscalable wall.”)
- What constitutes perfect protection? (The name of the
- Why does the verse say “the name of the Lord”
rather than just “the Lord?” (I think this
refers to God’s nature.)
- Let’s continue by reading Proverbs 18:12. Does verse 12
relate to verses 10-11? (I think so. If you run to the
name of the Lord (v.10), then you run to the nature of
God. Someone who turns to God is not showing a proud and
arrogant attitude. On the other hand, if you turn to your
wealth for protection (v.11), that encourages a proud
- Why does humility come before honor?
- Would you like to be honored? If so, to whom should
- Why do you think pride leads to a downfall?
- Let’s read Proverbs 21:4. What does it mean when
it says pride is the “lamp” of the wicked? (A
lamp is how you see life. How you decide what to
do. ( Psalms 119:105 says that for the righteous,
God’s word is a lamp to the feet and a light for
our path.) Thus, the proud person makes
decisions based on what will lift him up over
- Is this why pride leads to failure?
- Friend, if you want a better life here and a life eternal,
God invites us to walk in the light of His instruction. He
invites us to come to Him for protection. If we depend
upon ourselves, if our every decision is guided by what
will glorify us, then we are destined for a fall.
- Next week: An Ounce of Prevention.