The Berean Expositor
Volume 51 - Page 18 of 181
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"He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the Lord require of thee,
but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?"
As we come to the Gospels, we find many references to the need for humility. The
disciples wanted to know who would be the greatest in the kingdom of Heaven, and our
Lord set a little child before them. "Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this
little child, the same is the greatest in the kingdom of Heaven" (Matt. 18: 4). Our Lord
spoke of the scribes and Pharisees who were proud and liked to be called "Rabbi" and
have the best seats at civil functions. Christ said that "he that is greatest among you shall
be your servant" (Matt. 23: 11). He washed the feet of the disciples as an example of
true humility (John 13: 4-16). Christ quoted the words "he that humbleth himself shall
be exalted" in Mat. 23: 12 (also Luke 14: 11 and 18: 14).
An example was the wedding feast, when he advised guests not to take the best seats,
lest they be asked to step down in favour of a more important person. Better to be asked
to "come up higher". The quotation in Luke 18: 14 relates to the publican and the
Pharisee who went into the temple to pray; it was the humble prayer of the publican that
was commended by our Lord.
So in His teaching, our Lord often spoke about the need for true humility. It was in
His life, His death and the cruel suffering on the cross that our Lord showed how His
teaching was put into practice.
He was in the form of God, but did not consider that He should grasp at His "rights"
as being equal with God. He gave up His "rights" and emptied Himself, taking upon
Himself the form of a servant, and He was made in the likeness of men. Then, He
humbled Himself and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross
(Philippians 2: 5-11).
His sevenfold humility is to be followed by a sevenfold exaltation, and the time will
come when at the name of Jesus, every knee shall bow and every tongue confess that
Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
And so, Paul says, "Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus". Let us
reflect on what our Lord has done for us, what a tremendous sacrifice He made, giving up
His "rights" and suffering such a dreadful death for our sakes.
May we remember verse 3, "Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in
lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves". This is true humility,
and the reverse of pride. It is the spirit of Christ, who took our sins and carried them to
the tree.
James writes,
"Humble yourself in the sight of the Lord and He shall lift you up" (James 4: 10).
Let us conclude with a quotation from Col. 3: 12, 13: