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Summary: If you want to meet Jesus, you won’t find him at the pinnacle of earthly successes; you have to climb down to the Cornerstone-Jesus is always at the bottom of things, holding everyone else up.

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Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. 7 Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. 1 Peter 5:6-7

There are four points here, and, I believe, they are connected.

Humble Yourselves

Peter (and the rest of the New Testament) has quite a lot to say about humbling ourselves:

1 Peter 3:1 Wives, in the same way be submissive to your husbands . . .7 Husbands, in the same way be considerate as you live with your wives . . . 8 Finally, all of you, live in harmony with one another; be sympathetic, love as brothers, be compassionate and humble. 9 Do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult, but with blessing, because to this you were called so that you may inherit a blessing . . .

1 Peter 5:5 Young men, in the same way be submissive to those who are older. All of you, clothe yourselves with humility toward one another, because, “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.” . . .

At that time the disciples came to Jesus and asked, “Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?”

2 He called a little child and had him stand among them. 3 And he said: “I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. 4 Therefore, whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. Matthew 18:1-4

3 For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: 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 . . . . Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves. 11 Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. 12 Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. 13 Share with God’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality.

14 Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. 15 Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. 16 Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited. Romans 12:3, 10-16

25 Jesus said to them, “The kings of the Gentiles lord it over them; and those who exercise authority over them call themselves Benefactors. 26 But you are not to be like that. Instead, the greatest among you should be like the youngest, and the one who rules like the one who serves. 27 For who is greater, the one who is at the table or the one who serves? Is it not the one who is at the table? But I am among you as one who serves. Luke 22:25-27

I used to think that God’s gifts were on shelves one above another and the taller we grow, the easier we can reach them. Now, I find, that God’s gifts are on shelves one beneath another and the lower we stoop, the more we get. F. B. Meyer

This is the one I esteem: he who is humble and contrite in spirit, and trembles at my word. Isaiah 66:2

Who is wise and understanding among you? Let him show it by his good life, by deeds done in the humility that comes from wisdom. James 3:13

AUGUSTINE of HIPPO-considered one of the greatest thinkers in human history. His influence on philosophy and the Christian faith is still felt today . . .

"Should you ask me what is the first thing in religion, I should reply, ’The first, second, and third thing therein.... nay all, is humility." Augustine of Hippo

If I were asked to identify the greatest spiritual gifts and the best virtues for ministry, I would say the first is love. Second, and closely allied to it, is humility. I believe humility is the greatest of virtues (next to love) because it is through humility that so many other things fall into place. Our attitude of humility is the basis of the beginning of our relationship with God-without repentance it is impossible to please and serve God. It is the foundation upon which all obedience to God’s will is built. And it is the salve that heals and nurtures godly relationships. Humility is sunrise on the Day of Christian maturity.

It was just before the Passover Feast. Jesus knew that the time had come for him to leave this world and go to the Father. Having loved his own who were in the world, he now showed them the full extent of his love. 2 The evening meal was being served, and the devil had already prompted Judas Iscariot, son of Simon, to betray Jesus. 3 Jesus knew that the Father had put all things under his power, and that he had come from God and was returning to God; 4 so he got up from the meal, took off his outer clothing, and wrapped a towel around his waist. 5 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. 6 He came to Simon Peter, who said to him, “Lord, are you going to wash my feet?” 7 Jesus replied, “You do not realize now what I am doing, but later you will understand.” 8 “No,” said Peter, “you shall never wash my feet.”

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