Narcissism and Job Performance

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Proverbs 16:18

18 Pride goes before destruction,
And a haughty spirit before stumbling.

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We have seen in these pages that the Bible discusses consequences to insolent pride – but sometimes it is hard to see in real life since it appears that narcissists almost always “get away with it”.  One area where we would expect the consequences to be seen would be in the area of job performance.

People in many lines of work get their performance evaluated through the eyes of others – thus giving the narcissist the opportunity to manipulate situations to his own advantage.  However, in the field of money management the job performance is summarized in the simple final number of the investment return.  This means that the ultimate job performance is not based on what people think, but on actual results.

A study was done using the field of money management as the “hard number arbiter of job performance results” which shows that narcissists (embedded in a broader group of psycopaths) in fact do have lower job performance.  If you’re interested, here is the article which discusses this:

Psycopath Hedge Fund Managers Make Less Money

 

God Makes Clear What He Thinks About N’s

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In case you have any doubt about what God thinks of those who have the heart and actions of narcissists, Proverbs 6 makes it very clear

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Proverbs 6:16-19

16 There are six things which the Lord hates,
Yes, seven which are an abomination to Him:
17 Haughty eyes, a lying tongue,
And hands that shed innocent blood,
18 A heart that devises wicked plans,
Feet that run rapidly to evil,
19 A false witness who utters lies,
And one who spreads strife among brothers.

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Several characteristics in the above list stand out as narcissistic traits

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  1. Haughty eyes
  2. Lying tongue
  3. Heart that devises wicked plans
  4. False witness who utters lies
  5. One who spreads strife among brothers

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The bottom line is that God HATES insolent pride.  It results in much harm to others, and is the single biggest barrier to the prideful person experiencing His true love and goodness.

All The Reward They Will Ever Get

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Matthew 6:1-18

“Beware of practicing your righteousness before men to be noticed by them; otherwise you have no reward with your Father who is in heaven.

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“So when you give to the poor, do not sound a trumpet before you, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, so that they may be honored by men. Truly I say to you, they have their reward in full.

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The Progression of Fools, p.s. – God Will Ultimately Lower The Boom

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There is a clear warning to those who continue down path of the progression of fools

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Proverbs 6:12-15

A worthless person, a wicked man,
Is the one who walks with a perverse mouth,
13 Who winks with his eyes, who signals with his feet,
Who points with his fingers;
14 Who with perversity in his heart continually devises evil,
Who spreads strife.
15 Therefore his calamity will come suddenly;
Instantly he will be broken and there will be no healing.

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Proverbs 29:1 explains that this sudden calamity does not just happen at the first “mistake” the person made, but actually comes after the wicked person has repeatedly rejected God’s warnings to change his ways.

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Proverbs 29:1

29 A man who hardens his neck after much reproof
Will suddenly be broken beyond remedy.

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One example of God’s gracious patience in giving many reproofs and even final “notice” was King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon in Daniel 4.   God gave Nebuchadnezzar a dream with a warning to change his ways.  Then God gave him an entire year to repent and change, but Nebuchadnezzar did not.  After the year God lowered the boom and took decisive action to humble him.

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One implication of this for those suffering at the hands of narcissists and fools is that while in our weariness of dealing with it we want it FIXED NOW, God also is gracious and patient with them while at the same time providing grace to us.  But, He will ultimately deal with them.

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For more on repentance see Steps To Peace With God, and Fake vs. Sincere Repentance

There is No Defense Against God’s Humbling

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Obadiah 1-4

Thus says the Lord God concerning Edom—

We have heard a report from the Lord,
And an envoy has been sent among the nations saying,
“Arise and let us go against her for battle”—
“Behold, I will make you small among the nations;
You are greatly despised.
“The arrogance of your heart has deceived you,
You who live in the clefts of [b]the rock,
In the loftiness of your dwelling place,
Who say in your heart,
‘Who will bring me down to earth?’
“Though you build high like the eagle,
Though you set your nest among the stars,
From there I will bring you down,” declares the Lord.

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It is easy for a proud person to think that he can build a strong enough wall through his wealth or fame to prevent himself from being humbled by God.  Of course, a proud person does not consciously think in terms of being humbled by God (as he rarely acknowledges God), but in terms of “bad things happening” to him.  But as God demonstrated through Nebuchadnezzar, He is able to humble anyone.  And as He declares here with Edom (family line of Esau, another N), it does not matter how much an N tries to guard against it, if God decides to humble an N, He will make it happen.

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  • Narcissism is the modern colloquial term for what the Bible calls “insolent pride” – see here

Narcissist* Consequences – Nothing But Strife

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Proverbs 13:10 – Through insolence comes nothing but strife, But wisdom is with those who receive counsel.
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This one almost speaks for itself.   Narcissists / those with insolent pride are conflict creators.  Their focus on self-exaltation and getting what they want causes them to take actions that run people over in the pursuit of getting what they want – rather than “wasting their time and energy” on having peaceful relationships.
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The word for insolence in Proverbs 13:10 is the same word as that used in our “key” verse of Proverbs 21:24 – “Proud, haughty, scoffer are his names; who acts with insolent pride.”.

Proverbs 11:2
HEB: בָּֽא־ זָ֭דוֹן וַיָּבֹ֣א קָל֑וֹן
NAS: When pride comes, then comes
KJV: [When] pride cometh, then cometh
INT: comes pride comes dishonor

Proverbs 13:10
HEB: רַק־ בְּ֭זָדוֹן יִתֵּ֣ן מַצָּ֑ה
NAS: Through insolence comes nothing
KJV: Only by pride cometh contention:
INT: but insolence comes strife

Proverbs 21:24
HEB: ע֝וֹשֶׂ֗ה בְּעֶבְרַ֥ת זָדֽוֹן׃
NAS: Who acts with insolent pride.
KJV: who dealeth in proud wrath.
INT: acts wrath insolent

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Strong’s Concordance
zadon: insolence, presumptuousness

Original Word: זָדוֹן
Part of Speech: Noun Masculine
Transliteration: zadon
Phonetic Spelling: (zaw-done’)
Short Definition: arrogance

NAS Exhaustive Concordance

Word Origin
from zud
Definition
insolence, presumptuousness
NASB Translation
arrogance (3), arrogant (2), insolence (2), insolent pride (1), presumptuously (2), pride (1)..

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* Narcissism is the modern colloquial term for what the Bible calls “insolent pride” – see here for more

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