Viv White – Based on the Inside Out Class of Vince Finnegan
In the first recorded teaching of our Lord, the very first topic presented is humility. Throughout the Scriptures, great emphasis is placed on living today in light of the coming Kingdom. The beginning point for walking with God and conducting our lives in a manner fitting for entrance into the Kingdom is humility. God requires humility!
Micah 6:6-8 – “With what shall I come to the LORD and bow myself before the God on high? Shall I come to Him with burnt offerings, with yearling calves? Does the LORD take delight in thousands of rams, in ten thousand rivers of oil? Shall I present my firstborn for my rebellious acts, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul? He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the LORD require of you but to do justice, to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?”
Humility is the recognition and belief that we are not sufficient of ourselves, but that our sufficiency is of God (2 Corinthians 3:4-5). Simply stated, “We cannot; He can; God help us.”
Much more than just conceding our limitations and weaknesses, it is acknowledgement of God Almighty’s abilities and strengths in our lives. It is to surrender our ways to His ways that are so much higher than our own. The humility we read about in the Bible is a total dependency and reliance upon God and accepting our need for Him and His ways.
“At that time the disciples came to Jesus and said, “Who then is greatest in the kingdom of heaven?” And He called a child to Himself and set him before them, and said, “Truly I say to you, unless you are converted and become like children, you will not enter the kingdom of heaven. “Whoever then humbles himself as this child, he is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.”
Babies are totally dependent upon their parents for everything. They cannot live on their own without help, likewise is our relationship with God our Father.
John 5:19, 30 – Jesus, the perfect man, could not live on his own.
19 “Therefore Jesus answered and was saying to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, the Son can do nothing of Himself, unless it is something He sees the Father doing; for whatever the Father does, these things the Son also does in like manner.”
30 “I can of Myself do nothing. As I hear, I judge; and My judgment is righteous, because I do not seek My own will but the will of the Father who sent Me.”
Pride is the Opposite of Humility
“But God shows us even more kindness. Scripture says, “God opposes arrogant people, but he is kind to humble people.” So place yourselves under God’s authority. Resist the devil, and he will run away from you. Come close to God, and he will come close to you. Clean up your lives, you sinners, and clear your minds, you doubters. Be miserable, mourn, and cry. Turn your laughter into mourning and your joy into gloom. Humble yourselves in the Lord’s presence. Then he will give you a high position.”
God RESISTS The Proud
God resists the proud because the proud resist Him. To humble ourselves is to empty all desire to exercise our personal will above the will of God. What He wants becomes more important than what we want.
1 Peter 5:5-7 “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, casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.”
As we clothe ourselves with humility, God will give grace.
Proverbs 16:18-19; 18:12; 28:25 and 26 – “He who trusts in his own heart is a fool, But whoever walks wisely will be delivered.”
To receive help, one must first realize he needs help, next acknowledge God’s ability and willingness to help, and finally humbly ask for His help. The prideful fail to do the first step.
God Hears the Humble
“LORD, You have heard the desire of the humble; You will prepare their heart; You will cause Your ear to hear,..”
When we humbly approach our God with love and respect, He hears us and fulfils our desires – Psalm 145:14-19.
Proverbs 22:4 – “The reward of humility and the fear of the LORD are riches, honour and life.”
1 Kings 21:25-29 – Ahab was a wicked idolater who caused much harm to many people. Yet, when he humbled himself, God responded.
2 Chronicles 33:12-13 – Manasseh was forgiven!
Die to Self Interest and Live for God
“Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself. Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others. Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross. Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name,…” – Selfishness and empty conceit contrast with humility of mind. The humble are obedient.
Matthew 10:39 – “He who has found his life will lose it, and he who has lost his life for My sake will find it.”
- The humble acknowledge the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, and praise Him.
- The proud think everything in life revolves around them. Their thoughts and conversations are primarily centred on themselves.
- The humble are thankful knowing everything good comes from God as a gift. They strongly believe that they deserve nothing.
- The proud lack genuine gratitude. They think they deserve what is good, and that God and others owe it to them. They tend to be critical, complaining, and discontent.
- The humble one does not see himself as better than others.
- The proud compares himself to others and feels that he is better than they are.
- The humble pray a lot.
- The proud do not have time to pray.
- The humble prefer others over themselves. Serving others is viewed as a gracious privilege granted by a loving God.
- The proud prefer self over others and expect to be served. When they do serve others, they do so always on their own terms.
- The humble are God-pleasers.
- The proud are men-pleasers.
- The humble know God is in control.
- The proud want control of self and others.
What consequences do we suffer right now because of our pride?
How are you going to change?