: How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! How art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nation! For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven ,I will exalt my throne above the stars of God; I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation , in the sides of the north; I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High; ( Isaiah 14: 12-14).
If ambition could be accurately defined, that is it above and if there are levels of ambition, that was the most ambitious man speaking.
Ambitious is a word that is looked at as amoral in nature. Both the greatest achievers and the most odious anti-humanity of all men in the history of mankind were all men of ambition. For the purpose of this thought, it will be good to draw a line between purpose and dark ambition.
In attitude, ambition is a lot more selfish. Ambition is more of ‘I will’. The major and almost the only beneficiary in the course of ambition is the ambitious man himself. It’s all about what he wants and not what is right. All the course of action circles round his ravenous bloated ego with a beastly appetite. Anything on his way must die and all that live must live to serve him.
This looks like the picture of a beast, yet this hideous beast lives inside well dressed men; well cut – out physique, hiding behind refined manners, cultured language and pious personality – Ambition!
If ambition had remain in the world and leave us Christians alone, we will only stand sadly and patiently wait for the day the Lord will judge the secrets of men. But alas, this swine had crept into the sanctuary and with the tunic only meant for the sons of Aaron on, he now offer incense and burn sacrifices at the altar. With its ability to adapt, ambition can go anyway.
The ambitious man with religious inclination could easily be mistaken for a zealous Christian, or Christian leader. This spark of religious ambition could start at a crusade or a Christian camp meeting where a man of God minister with such power and manifestations of the Spirit of God that could not be denied.
Then the little beast in this Simon the sorcerer will speak “I also want this power, I will be like that”. And from that moment on, each prayer, fasting, Bible study, seminary course, service in the vine yard of God and every other Christian activities help to fuel the flame of ambition because they were done with a motive altogether different from the interest of the kingdom. Like his brother in the circular, the ambitious man in religion will crush all on his way and spare only the ones loyal to his course.
Ambition is a pest and plaque; it destroys effectively; because it destroys from within. The ambitious man is long destroyed before we could diagnose his problem. All we see from the outside is a zealous man, a prayerful brother, an effective Bible expositor, a dynamic Christian leader, a wonderful sister; whereas, the flame is not Shekinar, it is the flame of religious ambition. In some cases it will take the light of eternity, when all things will be made plane to discover it was the flame of ambition that burned in that beloved brother.
The flame of ambition destroyed the son of the morning; it could destroy any son of Adam! We all need to stand and fight against ambition in the church… NO! And please before you fight, let me tell you where that silly beast is hiding …IN YOU! If you make the mistake of looking for it in another, you will be guilty of several sins at once. It will be extremely difficult for you to identify it in another person, you will be wrong. What you call ambition in others could be true zeal or immaturity. But, you can’t mistake it in you!
And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother’s eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye? Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold, a beam is in thine own eye? Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother’s. Matt 7:3-5.
It becomes us all to look inwardly and ask: “The flame that keep me going, is it Shekinar or Silly Ambition?” Is it in the kingdom interest or for my empire?” The heart knows its own evil, if you are sincere, you will not wonder for too long, the Lord will come to your aid.” Blessed are the poor in Spirit”
The Lord told me. “No ambitious man will amount to anything significant before me, and nothing of serious eternal consequence will be committed to any ambitious man”He made me understand that I have to be free from all ambition before I could truly walk with him. Until all within me is willing to be all and only what the Lord want me to be, I will Not be a true worshiper of God in Spirit and in true. I must choose to live a life devoid of all personal interest and goal to be a pilgrim indeed!
For they that say such things declare plainly that they seek a country. And truly, if they had been mindful of that country from whence they came out, they might have had opportunity to have returned. But now they desire a better country, that is, an heavenly: wherefore God is not ashamed to be called their God: for he hath prepared for them a city Heb 11:14-16.
Pastor Olufemi Ayodele
President Echo Ministry