Matthew 5:3 Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven (KJV).
Those who are poor in spirit realize that they are spiritually helpless. They comprehend they do not possess the righteousness necessary to enter the Kingdom. They recognize they need the Holy Spirit for sanctification and power for living. As a result, they humble themselves before God, which positions them to receive the righteousness of God through Jesus Christ. Even while moving from darkness into His marvelous Light, they will be ever mindful of the paradigm found in Zechariah 4:6, “Not by might, nor by power, but by My Spirit, saith the Lord of hosts” (KJV). They embrace the reality that their sufficiency is unequivocally reliant on God, which is the complete opposite of those who have an independent spirit.
In a number of cultures, the independent spirit is celebrated. It ties in with the “power of pride” that declares I can do it myself. This self-reliance snubs its nose at humility, even though it feigns to have it when necessary for public relations. While a number of people consider the independent spirit to be an asset, it is actually a detriment. Proverbs 16:18 makes this clear, “Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall” (KJV). Because they will not bow their knees, those with an independent spirit will not enter into the Kingdom of Heaven, much less be able to function there. Because this attitude is incapable of submission, the Holy Spirit cannot lead those with it. Only those led by the Holy Spirit are the sons of God (see Romans 8:14). That means if a person is not a son or daughter of God, their spiritual daddy is the devil. If they continue to keep him as their father, while rejecting God the Father, they will follow him all the way to his eternal destiny –the lake of fire (see John 8:39-47; Revelation 20:1-15).
James 4:1-5 describes the independent spirit this way, “From whence come wars and fightings among you? come they not hence, even of your lusts that war in your members? Ye lust, and have not: ye kill, and desire to have, and cannot obtain: ye fight and war, yet ye have not, because ye ask not. Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts. Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God. Do ye think that the scripture saith in vain, The spirit that dwelleth in us lusteth to envy”(KJV)?
Clearly, those with the independent spirit are selfish. They may do things for others, but it is usually on their terms with impure motives. Even while “blessing” others, it still about them: “Look what I did!” Whom do they glorify when they take pride in doing things? A sad part is they have difficulty honoring others when honor is due to them. They practically choke on words of congratulations to people when they are promoted or accomplish something major. Worst of all, they would rather honor themselves than God.
2Corinthians 3:17 Now the Lord is that Spirit: and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty (KJV). The True Free Spirit is the Spirit of the Lord. Without the Spirit there is no freedom. Those of the world will never know freedom because they cannot know the Holy Spirit (see John 14:17), unless they become poor in spirit and choose life. Those who walk in pride will fail to fully enjoy the freedom God intended them to have. Blessed are the poor in spirit indeed!