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Glory is merited praise. Glory is the love we offer God, that He deserves.  Glory is also the love God offers us because of what we have done.  “This is my Beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.”  Glory is conditional love, as opposed to unconditional love.  God offers both.

Glory is righteous pride.

In other words, righteous pride is a form of love. Specifically, It is love that is allied to a just recognition of merits.  It can be pride in God, as here or here; it can be pride in another, a son, for example; or it could even be pride in oneself—self-love is part of the gospel plan.

Unrighteous pride is any variation from this formula.

Glory is status. Earning glory increases one’s status.  A number of variants of unrighteous pride involve skipping the earning and going straight for the status.  This can involve trying to prevent other people’s achievement, or it can involve faking achievement to receive love and praise under false pretenses.

The Incredibles movie has a theme that bothers me. The villain wants everybody to have superpowers, not just superheroes.  The movie rejects his plan, “because when everybody is special, nobody is.”  This mantra also is a form of unrighteous pride.  Love for achievement does not rely on comparisons.  Love is not a fixed pie.  If all of a man’s sons achieve great things, he loves them all, all the more.

But the movie still works, because the villain wants the status of equality more than he wants the actual achievement. So he takes shortcuts.  Instead of releasing high tech to the world, he designs a deadly robot menace and then creates a shortcut to make it seem like he has defeated it.

Or consider Satan. He wanted to strip mankind of our moral agency, reducing our status relative to him, and then take all the credit for the results in place of God.

Unrighteous pride sometimes hates that there is conditional love at all. This is the form of pride that insists on being treated as accomplished without any accomplishments.  Special snowflake syndrome is an example.

Unrighteous pride sometimes takes the form of hating the ones who bestow the love. As if receiving love made one dependent and diminished.  In its diabolic form, this kind of pride is enmity to God, who is the ultimate source of recognition and the ultimate bestower of love.

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