Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Jesus Christ the Humble King

In the letter to the Philippians, the Apostle Paul exhorts the church to be humble as Christ was humble in His coming as the God-man. Jesus Christ born of the virgin Mary by the power of the Holy Spirit was fully God and fully man, the difficulty lies not in proving that the scriptures reveal this, rather the difficulty lies in our ability to grasp a glorious miracle in which we have nothing to compare it to.
With that said let us look at the passage and a few considerations of Christ's humility,

Philippians 2:5-11
Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. For this reason also, God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name, 10 so that at the name of Jesus every knee will bow, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, 11 and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

Instead of 'grasping' the divinity which was fully His, Jesus emptied Himself, took the form of a bond-servant, and was made in the likeness of men. His humility was seen in His obedience and ESPECIALLY His obedience unto death! WIthout detracting in any way shape or form from His glorious and primary submission to God the Father in His perfect obedience and joyful acceptance of His will, I want to give some attention to some other aspects. 
Consider with me just a few contexts displaying how magnificent His humility truly was:
*Humble in His taking on flesh: Jesus in His humanity actually had NEEDS (FYI, God doesn't have needs), Jesus not only needed rest, food, water as a man but Jesus as a child even needed to be carried, to be fed, to be changed, to be bathed etc.

*Humble in His submission to authority: Jesus not only submitted to Mary and Joseph, He even submitted to a foreign oppressive (raised up by the hand of God) ruler as He pays taxes!
*Humble in His patience with His disciples: Bearing with their weaknesses, questions and even employing them in tasks which He could do faster and better!
*Humble in His trial and abuse from men: as He took blows which He could have stopped, enduring the whips from puny men whom He had created, refusing to respond in vengeance towards His mockers! 
*Humble in His treatment of His betrayer:

  •   It's mind-blowing to think of how Jesus treated the man He KNEW was His betrayer, so gracious was His treatment of Judas that none of the disciples ever had even a hint of suspicion concerning this man that they traveled and lived with for years! Think of the many times Jesus feeds even Judas, how He sends out even Judas, how He shares precious truths even with Judas! Call to mind the objections Judas made concerning the ointment poured upon Jesus' head and what mighty power of restraint it took to hear his greed-dripping lies (while everyone else gets the impression Judas is such a compassionate person) and not blow up! If that was not astounding enough, call to mind how humble the act was when Jesus our Lord even washed the feet of Judas, right before his final act of betrayal! Then of all signals, Judas points out Christ with an intimate expression of love (a kiss), and for Christ to not cause the very ground to swallow Judas up at that very moment is quite amazing!
This is our Savior, this is our Lord who so humbled Himself, who wonderfully and willfully submitted to such treatment. The Lord who was determined to save men, not because they deserved such, not because they earned such, nor because of what they could then offer Him, but because of His great love, His DECISION to love us in spite of us, fueled by His desire to magnify the grace of God and display His glory! The Lord Jesus came determined to save sinners, wicked hell-deserving law breakers, although they gave Him, in fact WE gave Him every reason to NOT save us!
Oh but let none of us for a moment forget a terrifying reality, and that the Lamb who came not to condemn but to save, will return as the Lion who will exact vengeance on the adversaries of the Lord! He will return in power, not to take blows but to give them! Jesus Christ, not only warned of judgment, but we are told, contrary to popular opinion, that the guilt is now INCREASED because of His glory and grace being revealed through Jesus Christ:

Hebrews 10:29-31
29 How much severer punishment do you think he will deserve who has trampled under foot the Son of God, and has regarded as unclean the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified, and has insulted the Spirit of grace? 30 For we know Him who said, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay.” And again, “The Lord will judge His people.” 31 It is a terrifying thing to fall into the hands of the living God.

Whether men choose to do so, through faith and repentance towards God, or whether they are slammed down, all, yes ALL will inevitably recognize and CONFESS that Jesus is Lord! May it not be on the way to eternal damnation, may you not reject the majesty of the King who became a child! Humble yourself before God almighty, give up your excuses, turn away from trusting in your own goodness/merit, and utterly reject the lie of your heart that perhaps God will prove to have been only bluffing and that the life, death and resurrection of Christ meant so little that He'll just welcome you no matter what! Seek Him NOW, while you may, while you are reading these words and sensing the truth of these matters, don't harden your heart with excuses so you can continue in your sinful ways, turn to God, He'll cleanse you from your sins, He'll transform your life by dwelling in you, and He'll ensure you dwell with Him in eternity! 

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