God Humbled Himself
"Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross." (Philippians 2:5-8)
Have you ever met someone who seemed very proud? What did the person do or say to make you think of pride? On the other hand, have you ever met someone who seemed to be humble? What did the person do or say to make you think of humility?
Jesus Christ was God. As God, He deserved to be treated like God. In order to save sinful people, God humbled Himself and became a man. He did not focus on what He deserved, even though He was perfect and almighty. Because He was God, Jesus deserved honor and glory and respect – but instead, He allowed people to ruin His reputation. Because He was God, Jesus could have made Himself a king on Earth – but He chose instead to be a homeless teacher and a servant. Because He was God, Jesus did not have to submit to authority – but He chose to become obedient.
The Bible teaches that Christians ought to be clothed in humility. Being humble is like putting on an apron to cook in the kitchen, or putting on coveralls to go clean out a barn stall.
We ought to shake off our pride and switch it for a spirit of humility. Philippians 2:5 says, "Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus." We ought to change our minds and think with the mindset (attitude) that Jesus had. A humble spirit does not care about being popular or respected by other people. A humble spirit serves others without complaining or thinking of self. A humble spirit is obedient, even when obedience hurts.
If the God Who created the universe has willingly humbled Himself, what reason do we have to hold on to our sinful pride? If we know God at all, it is because God has shown us grace. If we can talk to God at all, it is because He humbled Himself to make it possible for us to come to Him. The Bible teaches that "a proud look and a haughty spirit" are an "abomination" to the LORD. An "abomination" is something that is very wicked and very offensive. A proud spirit is not fitting for a Christian. For a sinner saved by grace, having a spirit of pride is like dressing in clothes that do not match or fit at all.
Instead, we ought to be clothed with humility. We ought to let Jesus' mindset be our attitude: humble enough to forget about what other people think, humble enough to serve, and humble enough to obey.
Even though He was God, Jesus humbled Himself to serve and obey.
» How do I offend God with my proud attitude?
» How can I practice the kind of humility that Jesus did?
Truth In Real Life
Emily Chubbuck Judson
“Time and eternity are here.”
Emily Chubbuck was born in New York on August 22. Being part of a very poor family, Emily was forced to work in the mills by the time she was twelve years old. She wanted to learn as much as she could, however, so she went to school during the winter and she worked during the summer – leaving no extra time to be a “normal kid.” She became a teacher when she was just fifteen years old.
When she wasn’t working her other jobs, Emily found that writing was one of her favorite things to do. She enjoyed writing and publishing books for children. She was especially good at writing poetry and wrote under the pen name – or “pretend name” – of “Fanny Forrester.” Her Sunday School books were a big help to Christians around the world.
Everything she did was for God and for her family.
The missionary Adoniram Judson – whose wife Sarah had recently died – heard about Emily and asked her to write Sarah’s biography. Emily wrote the book, and the authoress and the missionary developed a special friendship. Judson ended up marrying her later that year. They returned to the mission field of Burma where Emily served Jesus Christ alongside her husband. She might have become famous for her writing and made a lifelong name for herself, had she not chosen to go to the mission field instead.
Later in his life, Adoniram Judson got very sick and he left on a boat to get medical help. He died on the boat and it took four months for Emily to get the news that her husband was not coming home. She continued to work and pray, trusting that God would take care of her all the time.
Emily often spoke about the importance of using her talents for Jesus Christ. She genuinely desired for God to use her talents to spread the Gospel.
What talents and gifts has God given you that could be used in God’s work?
Colossians 3:23 – And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men.