Saturday, April 13, 2013

Word of the Day... April 13, 2013

1Therefore if there is any encouragement in Christ, if there is any consolation of love, if there is any fellowship of the Spirit, if any affection and compassion, 2 make my joy complete by being of the same mind, maintaining the same love, united in spirit, intent on one purpose. 3 Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves; 4 do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others. 5 Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, 6 who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, 7 but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and  being made in the likeness of men. 8 Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. 9 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. Philippians 2:1-11

This is such a powerful Word from the Lord.  It is also so hard to do as humans.  The world tells us daily to do just the opposite of the Bible.  Yet, if we want to thrive as a Christian we must be like Jesus Christ.  Pride is the cancer of the soul and if it is left untreated, it will destroy everything especially spiritual life.  Just look what it did to the relationship between Satan and God.

Everything bad that happened in humanity had its roots in pride.  It was the sin of pride that got Adam and Eve kicked out of the Garden of Eden and it has affected every human being that has ever lived on this earth since. Through Adam and Eve’s pride, death was brought into the world. Pride can ruin relationships, destroy marriages, and turn friends into enemies. The Bible tells us that Pride goes before a fall.

We live in Hawai’i and my daughter went Kamehameha Schools and the one thing they taught from very young age was to have humility or Ha‘aha‘a.  Ha‘aha‘a is the value of humility. It urges us to be humble, and to be modest. Ha‘aha‘a teaches us to groom our own character with humility in respect for others. There is nothing noble about being superior to someone else. I was delighted when I found out that these were values that they were instilling in the children at her school from a very young age.  They are the values that we practice or should practice as Christians.

If you want to see humility in action, says Paul in this passage, look at Jesus. In verse 8, the word "even" points to the fact that Jesus died the most shameful, embarrassing, and painful method of execution. Why such humility? Why this kind of lowliness of mind? Why this kind of death? Because Jesus Christ was dealing with our greatest need: forgiveness. He humbled Himself to die this horrible death because He loves us.
The result of all the humility that Jesus experienced on earth, of pouring himself out to the last drop, of suffering this excruciating death, is that His Father would honor Him by resurrection, ascension, and dominion.

So this is how we all should treat one another: Humble yourself and be lowly before other people, not prideful. Paul tells us to be to look out not only for our own interests, but also for the interests of others. And the ultimate example of this is Christ, who "humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross" 

As Christians we should aim to be more like Jesus. If Jesus Christ as Lord humbled Himself, then you should humble yourself. "Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus" (v. 5). And if you're willing to humble yourself, God will be willing to exalt you.

Remember: You're never more like the devil than when you puff yourself up with pride. But you're never more like Jesus than when you humble yourself. I hope that you all have a Simply Heavenly Saturday.


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