Small Group Studies

Pressure Point: Week 7

Today we are talking about pride. What comes to mind when you think about the word "pride"? For many people, a particular person comes to mind. You see, pride is very easy to recognize in others. It is quite difficult, however, to recognize in ourselves. Today we are going to take a look at ourselves and examine any pride in our lives. We will discover that Scripture calls us to embrace humility over pride.


How would you define pride?


Bible Study Questions

1. What are traits of someone who is struggling with pride in their lives?


2. Read Proverbs 16:18. What are the consequences of pride?

Proverbs 16:18

"Pride goes before destruction,
and haughtiness before a fall."

3. Read James 4:6-10. How are we called to live when we recognize pride in our lives?

James 4:6-10

"And he gives grace generously. As the Scriptures say,

"God opposes the proud
but gives grace to the humble."

7 So humble yourselves before God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. 8 Come close to God, and God will come close to you. Wash your hands, you sinners; purify your hearts, for your loyalty is divided between God and the world. 9 Let there be tears for what you have done. Let there be sorrow and deep grief. Let there be sadness instead of laughter, and gloom instead of joy. 10 Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up in honor."

4. How is humility an anecdote for pride?


1. How have you experienced the truth from Proverbs 16:18 that "pride goes before destruction, and haughtiness before a fall” in your life?

2. In what area of your life do you tend to give in to pride (work, family, relationships, finances, etc.)?

3. What step could you take to "come close to God" and embrace humility this week?


Read through Philippians 2:3-11. After reading, talk about what stands out to you about Christ's humility. How does His humility redefine our understanding of what it means to be humble? Finally, think of one way to follow Christ's example and embrace humility.


When it comes down to it, humility requires servant leadership. Paul described Jesus’ servant leadership in Philippians 2, which was a marker of His humility. Let’s take a look at the example Jesus set for us when it came to servant leadership throughout His three years of ministry on earth and learn from Him.


Even though He is the Son of God and the King of Kings, Jesus did not come to earth to be served. Instead of coming to be served as all people would have expected the Son of God to do, He taught about what it means to lead people in humility by serving. Look at Jesus’ example of humble servant leadership in Scripture.

1. Read Mark 10:41-45. How is Jesus’ teaching on leadership upside down from the world’s view of leadership?

Mark 10:41-45

 "When the ten other disciples heard what James and John had asked, they were indignant. 42 So Jesus called them together and said, "You know that the rulers in this world lord it over their people, and officials flaunt their authority over those under them. 43 But among you it will be different. Whoever wants to be a leader among you must be your servant, 44 and whoever wants to be first among you must be the slave of everyone else. 45 For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve others and to give his life as a ransom for many." 

2. Read John 13:1-17. How did Jesus demonstrate servant leadership in these verses?

John 13:1-17

"Before the Passover celebration, Jesus knew that his hour had come to leave this world and return to his Father. He had loved his disciples during his ministry on earth, and now he loved them to the very end. 2 It was time for supper, and the devil had already prompted Judas, son of Simon Iscariot, to betray Jesus. 3 Jesus knew that the Father had given him authority over everything and that he had come from God and would return to God. 4 So he got up from the table, took off his robe, wrapped a towel around his waist, 5 and poured water into a basin. Then he began to wash the disciples' feet, drying them with the towel he had around him.

6 When Jesus came to Simon Peter, Peter said to him, "Lord, are you going to wash my feet?"

7 Jesus replied, "You don't understand now what I am doing, but someday you will."

8 "No," Peter protested, "you will never ever wash my feet!"

Jesus replied, "Unless I wash you, you won't belong to me."

9 Simon Peter exclaimed, "Then wash my hands and head as well, Lord, not just my feet!"

10 Jesus replied, "A person who has bathed all over does not need to wash, except for the feet, to be entirely clean. And you disciples are clean, but not all of you." 11 For Jesus knew who would betray him. That is what he meant when he said, "Not all of you are clean."

12 After washing their feet, he put on his robe again and sat down and asked, "Do you understand what I was doing? 13 You call me 'Teacher' and 'Lord,' and you are right, because that's what I am. 14 And since I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you ought to wash each other's feet. 15 I have given you an example to follow. Do as I have done to you. 16 I tell you the truth, slaves are not greater than their master. Nor is the messenger more important than the one who sends the message. 17 Now that you know these things, God will bless you for doing them."

3. How does servant leadership require humility?

4. How does serving improve leadership?

Love for People

It is hard to have humility without a genuine love for people. After all, when you have genuine love for people, thinking of others more and ourselves less comes naturally. Jesus lived in humility, and He exhibited His humility through His love.

1. Read John 15:9-17. Summarize Jesus’ love based on this passage of Scripture.

John 15:9-17

"I have loved you even as the Father has loved me. Remain in my love. 10 When you obey my commandments, you remain in my love, just as I obey my Father's commandments and remain in his love. 11 I have told you these things so that you will be filled with my joy. Yes, your joy will overflow! 12 This is my commandment: Love each other in the same way I have loved you. 13 There is no greater love than to lay down one's life for one's friends. 14 You are my friends if you do what I command. 15 I no longer call you slaves, because a master doesn't confide in his slaves. Now you are my friends, since I have told you everything the Father told me. 16 You didn't choose me. I chose you. I appointed you to go and produce lasting fruit, so that the Father will give you whatever you ask for, using my name. 17 This is my command: Love each other."

2. How did Jesus’ teaching give a new understanding of what it meant to love?

3. How is humility required to show this kind of love?


One of the markers of humility is sacrifice. When one carries humility, they will be willing to sacrifice in order to love and care for the people around them. No one on earth demonstrated this kind of humility more than Jesus.

1. Read 1 Peter 2:22-25. How did Jesus show His humility through His sacrifice?

1 Peter 2:22-25

"He never sinned,
nor ever deceived anyone.
23 He did not retaliate when he was insulted,
nor threaten revenge when he suffered.
He left his case in the hands of God,
who always judges fairly.
24 He personally carried our sins
in his body on the cross
so that we can be dead to sin
and live for what is right.
By his wounds
you are healed.
25 Once you were like sheep
who wandered away.
But now you have turned to your Shepherd,
the Guardian of your souls."

2. How is humility required to follow Jesus’ example of sacrifice?

3. What does it look like today to live sacrificially?


Let’s take a few minutes to reflect on what we just read.

1. Of the three markers of humility that we discussed, service, love for people, and sacrifice, which characteristic comes most naturally? Why?

2. Which characteristic needs growth? How can you grow in that area?

3. Why are service, love for people, and sacrifice part of living in humility?

Pair up in groups of two or three and pray together. Ask God to give you all the courage to practice service, love for people, and sacrifice. Pray for each other over the next week and encourage each other throughout the week to continue growing in these areas.

MONTHLY MEMORY VERSE (Available for download on Sagebrush App)

Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The earnest prayer of a righteous person has great power and produces wonderful results. James 5:16