High or Humble
December 5, 2021
But he who is greatest among you shall be your servant. And whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted (Matthew 23:11-12).
We’ve all heard the lyrics, or have heard people refer to Mac Davis’ 1980s hit, “Oh Lord it's hard to be humble when you're perfect in every way. I can't wait to look in the mirror ‘cause I get better looking each day. To know me is to love me, I must be a **** of a man. Oh Lord it's hard to be humble, but I'm doing the best that I can.”
Humility is the state or quality of being humble; lowliness of mind; modest. Humility is not a negative trait. We are called to humility by understanding that we are not more important than others, neither are we less important than others. Jesus was not afraid to fight for His right to speak and minister to others, especially the poor, sick, and disenfranchised, and He spoke to those in authority in exactly the same way as He spoke to everyone else.
Being humble is not being a ‘doormat’ and allowing people to walk all over you. Instead, it is an understanding that every human is equally valuable; it is a recognition that you are worth no more or less than anyone else. Moses was a very powerful prophet and law giver of God. He stood before Pharaoh and demanded the release of the Hebrew people from slavery. He bowed before no one except the Lord God. He judged sin in the camp and those who were guilty of sin. And yet Scripture tells us, Now the man Moses was very humble, more than all men who were on the face of the earth (Numbers 12:3).
Jesus said the greatest person among us is the one who is a willing servant to us. He exemplified what He taught. His ministry among us was not to be served, but to serve, just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many (Matthew 20:28). To demonstrate this, during the last Passover they would experience together, Jesus got up from the table, took off His outer toga, wrapped a towel around His waist, and began washing the feet of the disciples; He performed the duty of a slave to guests in a master’s house.
Peter wrote, Shepherd the flock of God which is among you, serving as overseers, not by compulsion but willingly, not for dishonest gain but eagerly; nor as being lords over those entrusted to you, but being examples to the flock (1 Peter 5:2-3), and again, Likewise you younger people, submit yourselves to your elders. Yes, all of you be submissive to one another, and be clothed with humility, for “God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble." Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time (vv.5-6).
“Lord Jesus, we are called, saved, and sanctified to be conformed to Your image, to be an example before others as You are our example in faith, love, and service. Remind us that we are not to stand before others as lords, but to stand among others as servants. To Your honor and glory I ask, Amen.”