"Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus." (Philippians 2:5)
"Jesus knew that the Father had put all things under His power, and that He had come from God and was returning to God; so He got up from the meal, took off His outer clothing, and wrapped a towel around his waist. After that, He poured water into a basin and began to wash His disciples feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around Him!" (John 13:3-5)
What a matchless picture of humility! At the very moment when His throne was in view — angel-anthems floating in His ear — the hour come "when He was to depart out of this world" — possessing a lofty consciousness of His peerless dignity, that "He came from God and was going to God"; THEN "Jesus took a towel, and girded Himself, and began to wash the disciples' feet!"
All heaven was ready at that moment to cast their combined crowns at His feet. But the High and the Lofty One inhabiting eternity is on earth "as one that serves!" "That infinite stoop! It sinks all creature humiliation to nothing, and renders it impossible for a creature to humble himself." (Evans).
Humility follows Him, from His unhonored birthplace — to His borrowed grave. It throws a subdued splendor over all He did. "The poor in spirit" — the "mourner" — the "meek" — claim His first beatitudes. He was severe only to one class — those who despised others. However He is employed — whether performing His works of miraculous power, or taking little children in His arms — He stands forth as "clothed with humility".
No, this humility becomes more conspicuous as He draws nearer glory. Before His death, He calls His disciples "Friends"; subsequently, it is "Brethren," "Children." How sad the contrast between the Master — and His disciples! Two hours had not elapsed after He washed their feet, when "they began to argue among themselves about who would be the greatest among them!"
Let the image of that lowly Redeemer be ever in our mind’s eye. His example may well speak in silent impressiveness, bringing us down from our pedestal of pride. There surely can be no labor of love too humiliating for us — when He stooped so low. Let us be content to take the humblest place — not envious of the success or exaltation of another; not, "like Diotrephes, loving pre-eminence"; but willing to be thought little of; saying with the Baptist, with our eye on our Lord, "He must increase — but I must decrease!" (John 3:30).
How much we have cause to be humble for! — The constant cleaving of defilement to our souls; and even what is partially good in us — how mixed with imperfection, self-seeking, arrogance, vain-glory! A proud Christian is a contradiction in terms. The corn of the field, as it ripens — bows its head; just so, the Christian, as he ripens in the divine life, bends in this lowiy grace. Christ speaks of His people as "lilies" — they are "lilies of the Valley", they can only grow in the shade!
"I live in a high and holy place — but also with him who is contrite and humble in spirit" (Isaiah 57:15).
"Humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God." "Go" with what Rutherford calls "a low sail." Humility is the demeanor of your blessed Master; the family badge — the family likeness. "I live in a high and holy place — but also with him who is contrite and humble in spirit." Yes! The humble, sanctified heart is God's second Heaven!
“Arm yourselves likewise with the same mind.”
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