I went to church a while back intent on hearing the message from a particular preacher only to find him missing in action. The guest minister’s sermon on humility was a stark reminder that it’s all about the message and not necessarily the messenger. Fortunately for me, that was one of the enlightening moments when I came to Christ that oddly enough, was a key principle taught by the preacher I was set on hearing that Sunday. Again, my life now, I don’t believe in chance and coincidences. Humility as preached on this day was to be looked upon with Philippians 2 as the backdrop. That entire chapter is devoted to Paul’s message to the church at Philippi regarding the effort to “imitate Christ’s humility.” As I listened humility went somewhat uncomfortably from a docile concept of passive behavior to a clear fact and demonstration of power and strength rooted in faith. It was made crystal clear that Christ chose to consider Himself at best equal to, if not lesser than His fellow man. That’s you and me. The “ah-ha” moment comes when you recognize this is God we’re talking about. He consciously chose to make himself human in order to serve His divine purpose.
The text tells us to “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.” Now my recollection of Christ says that a pretty good description of how He looked at His duty is pretty much what got Him killed. I mean has anyone else noticed that the most dangerous, therefore the most powerful and important thing you can do in life is to care about someone else more than you care about yourself? You see this humility thing does indeed have teeth.
Paul teaches us that it is our fundamental responsibility as Christians, to be united in our effort to emulate Jesus’ denunciation of status, pride, ego and self. Surely if anyone one a right to be arrogant, it was the living Son of God. Think about it. You try being the walking talking Word and deliberately transform yourself into a mere mortal. Become Christ and die willingly at the hands of men. Now don’t spend too much time on this because you couldn’t do it. Fortunately Paul, as the minister made clear, is not asking you or me to do the impossible. However, he made it plain enough that our Christian goal should be service unto man. Put a lid on what we think of ourselves and prideful independence in favor of a collective interdependence upon each other and the Almighty. Christ died to save us all here in Philippi. Paul tells us that our conduct must be rooted in the following truth. Out of this thing called humility, Christ saved the world.
Are we better than Him? Think it through. If you’ve looked down your nose at anyone for any reason, if you really think you’re better than someone else, then you think you’re better than Jesus; who thought Himself no better and even less than you. He died in service to us, you and me. Do something good for someone else today simply because you can. If you don’t get this or refuse to…
May God bless and keep you always.