“Be of the same mind one toward another. Mind not high things, but condescend to men of low estate. Be not wise in your own conceits” (Romans 12:16).
This biting phrase, so aptly descriptive of many people today (especially of doctrinaire evolutionists but also, sadly, of many professing Christians), occurs six times in the Bible. Pride of one’s position, intelligence, race, status, or wealth all exhibit ungodly conceit, and so do laziness and foolishness, as seen in these passages, listed in order below. “Answer a fool according to his folly, lest he be wise in his own conceit” (Proverbs 26:5). “Seest thou a man wise in his own conceit? there is more hope of a fool than of him” (Proverbs 26:12). “The sluggard is wiser in his own conceit than seven men that can render a reason” (Proverbs 26:16). “The rich man is wise in his own conceit; but the poor that hath understanding searcheth him out” (Proverbs 28:11). “For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fullness of the Gentiles be come in” (Romans 11:25). “Mind not high things, but condescend to men of low estate. Be not wise in your own conceits” (Romans 12:16). The same Hebrew phrase is also translated “wise in your own eyes,” thus making a total of eight relevant passages with this admonition. “Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the LORD, and depart from evil” (Proverbs 3:7). “Woe unto them that are wise in their own eyes, and prudent in their own sight!” (Isaiah 5:21).
One gets the message! People have many excuses to boast of their own wisdom, but “God resisteth the proud, and giveth grace to the humble” (I Peter 5:5). HMM