74. Why is it important to be humble?

The Bible in James 4 verses 6-7 states this: ‘God opposes the proud, but favours the humble. So humble yourselves before God….and in verse 10 it says…‘Humble yourself before the Lord and he will lift you up in honour.’ In Psalm 75 verses 4-10 ‘I warned the proud, ‘Stop your boasting!’ I told the wicked, ‘Don’t raise your fists! Don’t raise your fists in defiance at the heavens or speak with such arrogance. For no one on earth—from east or west, or even from the wilderness—should raise a defiant fist. It is God alone who judges; he decides who will rise and who will fall. For the LORD holds a cup in his hand that is full of foaming wine mixed with spices. He pours out the wine in judgment, and all the wicked must drink it, draining it to the dregs. But as for me, I will always proclaim what God has done; I will sing praises to the God of Jacob. For God says, ‘I will break the strength of the wicked, but I will increase the power of the godly.’ ’ In Isaiah 57 verse 15 the Bible records these words: ‘The high and lofty One who lives in eternity the Holy One, says this: ‘I live in the high and holy place with those whose spirits are contrite and humble.’ ’ As believers we want to live in the presence of God. In Micah chapter 6 verse 8 it says: ‘O People, The Lord has told you what is good, and this is what he requires of you; to do what is right, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God.’

In Surah 26 ‘Al Shu’ara’ ayah 215 it is recorded that Muslims should ‘lower their wing’ to fellow Muslims. The commentators explain that the act of ‘lowering you wing’ is to be kind, gentle and considerate to your fellow believers. In the next two ayat following this it gives the reason why a Muslim would do this. Ayat 215 and 216 state: ‘Then if they disobey you, say ‘I am free of responsibility for what you do!’ and put your trust on the Exalted in Might, The Merciful.’ In other words it is better to put your trust in Allâh than to trust in the obedience of your fellow believer to obey Allâh and do what is right. The commentators referring to the use of fine arts for good or evil, say that Muslims should admire all fine arts that are used for the glorification of Allâh, but only attack (as in Jihad) those who use these arts for aggressive evil. In the cases of those who are going astray in the use of the fine arts they should be admonished gently so as to win them to that which is righteous. In Hadith 172 it states that ‘He is a bad man who is proud and puts on airs and forgets the Most Great and Sublime One.’ (Tirmidhi, Baihaqi). In Hadith 143 it states: ‘He who is deprived of gentleness is deprived of good.’