Luke 14 Lesson

Being Humble

HUMILITY

Humility is defined as:

“Freedom from pride or arrogance. The quality or state of not thinking you are better than other people.” (source: Merriam-Webster Dictionary).

As followers of Jesus, we need to think differently than the way the world thinks. Instead of living for ourselves, we are to live to glorify God and to serve one another. Consider the following two verses written by the Apostle Paul:

  1. “Therefore we have been buried with Him through baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life.” - Romans 6:4.
  2. “Set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth .” – Colossians 3:2.

Jesus said:

  • “If you love Me, keep My commandments.” – John 14:15.

We show our love for Jesus in the way that we live our lives. We show our love for Jesus by our commitment to following His commandments. And His commandments are clear, we are to live our lives as humble servants to the Lord.

FOUR BIBLE VERSES ABOUT HUMILITY

  1. Humility is the fear of the Lord; its wages are riches and honor and life.” - Proverbs 22:4
  2. You younger men, likewise, be subject to your elders; and all of you, clothe yourselves with humility toward one another, for God is opposed to the proud, but gives grace to the humble.” - 1 Peter 5:5.    
  3. “When pride comes, then comes dishonor, but with the humble is wisdom.” - Proverbs 11:2.  
  4. “Humble yourselves in the presence of the Lord, and He will exalt you.” - James 4:10.

MANAGING SUCCESS

One could argue that the times in our lives that we are most susceptible to Satan’s advances are when we are experiencing success. Satan loves to lull us into a false sense of security by making us think that we do not need God in our lives.

Nothing could be further from the truth!

If God has blessed us in any way, we need to make sure to give Him the glory. If we get puffed up, or proud, He will humble us.

Focusing on the following two scriptures can help us to remain humble during times of prosperity.

  1. “Every good thing given, and every perfect gift is from above.” – James 1:17. Any blessings that we receive are not of our own doing, they are blessings from God, and we should give Him the glory, not ourselves.
  2. If we begin to think too highly of ourselves, God will humble us for our own good. Jesus said, as recorded in Luke’s Gospel, Everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.” – Luke 14:11.

GOD USES ADVERSITY TO HUMBLE US

While nobody likes to go through hard times, we must realize that God uses adversity to strengthen us and to remind us of how much we need Him.   As the Hebrew writer said:

  • “God disciplines those that He loves, and He scourges every son whom He receives.” Hebrews 12:6.  

Therefore, we should not be surprised when we find ourselves going through various struggles. It is all part of God’s plan to teach us, to discipline us, and to shape us into the Christians that He created us to be!

NEWNESS OF LIFE MEANS NEW PRIORITIES

Jesus said:

  • “If anyone comes to Me and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be My disciple.” – Luke 14:26.

What does this scripture mean?

Does Jesus want us to hate our parents, spouses, children, siblings, and even ourselves? No.   That is not what Jesus is saying.   When you look at the original translations, what Jesus is talking about here is to “Love them less.”  

God wants us to love all people.   The second greatest commandment is to, “Love our neighbors as ourselves.” What Jesus is talking about here are our priorities.   When we rank the important things in our lives, God needs to come first.   Before ourselves.   Before our families.   Before everything!   When we put God first, everything else will fall into place. Jesus told us this in His Sermon on the Mount:

  • “But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. ” - Mathew 6:33.

CONCLUSION

Christians are to be humble servants of God. We do not practice humility to get a reward. We practice humility out of reverence to God and a sincere desire to obey His commands. If we are humble, God will exalt us at the proper time. 

We will end today’s lesson with the following two scriptures:

  1. “But the greatest of you shall be your servant.  Whoever exalts himself shall be humbled, and whoever humbles himself shall be exalted.” - Mathew 23:11-12.
  2. In the future there is reserved for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day; and not only to me but also to all who have loved His appearing.” – 2 Timothy 4:8.

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Dan

I usually think of Paul's directive, "Do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others" (Philippians 2:4) as a good indicator of humility.

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