Summary: In the words of Paul, we have two practical advice how we can serve in humility: (1) "Consider others better than yourselves" - DON’T OVERESTIMATE YOURSELF, and (2) "Look to the interests of others" - CARE FOR THE INTERESTS OF OTHERS.
Introduction: Recapping last week’s sermon "We Are Saved to Serve", from the example of Jesus:
(1) Choose Service over Self-Interest
(2) Always Think Like A Servant
Today, I want to talk about HUMILITY and how I achieved it!
· Just joking - if I boast about how I achieved it, it wouldn’t be humility.
One critical characteristic of a servant - in fact, one that you cannot do without, if you want to be a servant, is HUMILITY
Let’s read Phil 2:1-11
At one point or another, I believe all of us have to wrestle with this issue about our PRIDE.
· We find it hard to serve because we regard ourselves more highly than we ought.
· We see ourselves as SOMEBODY - someone with greater dignity and honour than others.
· Rom 12:3 "Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the measure of faith God has given you."
That’s the problem with Satan, and that’s the problem with Adam and Eve when they were influenced by the devil.
· Before creation of world, Satan was a beautiful angel Lucifer
· Pride took over him and he rebelled against the most High God.
· Isa 14:12-15 12 How you have fallen from heaven, O morning star, son of the dawn! You have been cast down to the earth, you who once laid low the nations! 13 You said in your heart, "I will ascend to heaven; I will raise my throne above the stars of God; I will sit enthroned on the mount of assembly, on the utmost heights of the sacred mountain. 14 I will ascend above the tops of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High." 15 But you are brought down to the grave, to the depths of the pit.
· Lucifer - "What I want to do for myself!" Instead, SOMEONE brought him down.
· Satan makes 5 boasts and each of them is driven by I and what I is planning to do.
· God kicked Satan out of heaven and he has been going down ever since, and one day, he’ll be cast into the pit of hell.
· He is on a downward journey and will never return...
In the Garden of Eden, Satan tempts Eve...
· Gen 3:4-5 4 "You will not surely die," the serpent said to the woman. 5 "For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil."
· You’ll just be like God, isn’t that great?
· That was a lie, but Eve swallowed it.
· Since then, humanity has been swallowing that - You don’t need God, you don’t need Jesus, just be your own god!
PRIDE will always leads to ruin, because we’ve shifting our confidence away from God to SELF.
Story of the Frog
A frog wanted to go south with the birds for the winter. It was too far to hop and he couldn’t fly, so he thought about it and came up with a solution. He got a couple of his bird friends to hold each end of a stick in their beaks and then the little frog clamped down on the center of the stick with his mouth.
The birds took off and the frog was hanging from the stick they were carrying in their mouths. They flew over a couple of farmers who observed the scene. On farmer said to the other, “What a brilliant idea! Whoever came up with that idea is a genius. I guess it was one of those birds who had the idea!”
When the frog heard that, he just couldn’t take it. It was his idea after all. It was my great idea! So he said, “It’s...” and he fell to the ground with a smash.
The moral of that story is: Don’t boast. Better to keep your mouth shut!
Prov 16:18 “Pride goes before destruction and a haughty spirit before a fall.”
The way to greatness in the Kingdom of God is not UP but DOWN.
· Jesus humbled Himself (v.8) and "God exalted Him" (v.9)
· The disciples have learnt - after hearing from Jesus and seeing Him serves
James 4:10 "Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up."
1 Peter 5:6 "Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time."
· The "paradoxical topography of the Kingdom of God" - the way up is down.
How can we truly serve that way? In the words of Paul - two practical advice:
1. "Consider others better than yourselves" DON’T OVERESTIMATE YOURSELF
Rom 12:3 "Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought...