|We Are To Be Humble But Not To Degrade What God Has Made|
Looking into 1 Corinthians 13 in the fourth verse, it says, charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up." That is to say, love is humble; it doesn't brag; it has no pride. Understanding just who you are in reality has a lot to do with understanding the exact function of faith, hope, grace, and love. By the way, humility does not imply that you must beat yourself up and think of yourself as something less than God thinks of you.
We are not to think of ourselves as more or less than we are.
Since the world, the culture, has conditioned us to a kind of unbalanced concept of self-esteem, there is an apparent a conflict between what we have been taught by the world, and what the Bible is saying. From many sources, there has been tremendous emphasis on loving ourselves and having self-esteem. We are told that we need to learn to love ourselves, but then the Bible says, in 2 Timothy 3:2, that in the last days there will be those who are lovers of themselves, and it is obvious from the context that this is not a good thing. So how should we think of ourselves? Brother Art Wagar said that we are not to think of ourselves more highly than we ought, Romans 12:3. Then he went on to say that we are not to think of ourselves as less than we are either. He explained that we are to think of ourselves according to the ministry that is in us, and he showed us that Romans 12:6 says that we have gifts differing according to the grace (free gift) of God. We are to think of ourselves according to the grace that is in us, Christ in us the hope of glory. Every Christian has and is a ministry, which is Christ in you. We are to think of ourselves according to the gifts and ministry that was prophesied over us. In other words, we are to think of ourselves according to reality.
We are not to know any person according to the flesh, 2 Corinthians 5:16. We know each other after the ministry that is in each one. And that is also how we need to know ourselves. We know that we have flesh, but we are not that flesh. That flesh is the old Adam and it must die.
When we are born again, we become two people. We were just the old, sinful man, but now, we also become the spiritual man, Christ in us, Colossians 1:27-29. Christ dwells in us, Ephesians 3:17. It would be impossible that Jesus would sin, 1 John 3:9. Of course, we have a will that we can turn toward the seed of Christ who has been born within us or turn toward the sinful nature, the old man. We not only have sin in our sinful nature, but we do sin, 1 John 1:10. If we sin, we have an advocate, Jesus, who says, I died for that sin-the price is paid." So we are two people, the flesh and the spiritual man, Christ. Christ and the flesh cannot be reconciled, and we must identify with one or the other. We identify with Christ.
We have two natures that cannot coexist, and we must choose one that we will identify with. We choose the Christ nature. So much is this true that the apostle Paul said that, when he sins, it is not he who does it, but sin that dwells in him, Romans 7:16-20. That almost sounds like a cop out, but the reality is that if we identify with our fleshly nature, we will then do the works of the fleshly nature. Rather, we make no provision for the flesh, Romans 13:14. We are to identify with the Christ who is in us. The ministry that is within us is Christ. He is the only one capable of doing good works, Galatians 2:20, 1 Corinthians 15:10. This is how we ought to think of ourselves. We are not the fleshly nature, Romans 7:17. We are not the self. We are ministries, the Christ in us, the called out people, the light of God, Ephesians 5:8. We are born sons of God who still have sin dwelling in us. We are not fleshly people who have Christ dwelling in us.
When we identify with Christ, we see Him as He is, and so we become like Him, 1 John 3:2. God is love, 1 John 4:8 & 16. When we see Him in our brother and sister, this actually opens the door for us to minister by the Spirit, 2 Corinthians 5:16. When we see our brother and sister after the flesh, we tend to also see ourselves after the flesh. We need the veil removed from our eyes. As we all, with the veil removed from our eyes, see the glory of the Lord as if in a mirror, we are transfigured into that same image from glory to glory by the Spirit of the Lord, 2 Corinthians 3:18.
Last updated: Jun, 2013
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