“Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall” (1 Corinthians 10:12).
Having just discussed several points about those living under the Old Testament and teaching some important principles about living the kind of life God wants His people to live, Paul comes forth with this profound concept for those now living in Christ.
Assurance and arrogance are opposing characteristics. Assurance means we have confidence that we have complied with the requirements for a situation, in this case God’s requirements for salvation. Arrogance is overconfidence about our situation. It displays the attitude of relying upon our own resources instead of depending on God.
In this passage, the Apostle Paul warns against arrogance. God owes us nothing; and even when we comply with His requirements, we have no basis for arrogance—that is, feeling overconfident as if we deserve the grace that He is extending to us.
Even though the Old Testament people whom Paul references here followed at least some of the rules, God was not pleased with them because they displayed a spirit of arrogance. He wants us, as His people, to learn from their mistakes and to submit humbly to His word, thus showing our dependence on Him and our trust in Him.