| Humiliation Brings Union with Christ|
Humiliation brings death. What do I mean by that? Well, just ask yourself the last time you were humiliated how you felt. Was it like a dagger that went down into the depths of your being? Humiliation is defined as the state or feeling of being humiliated; mortification. When a person is utterly humiliated it is as if they have been killed. Humiliation is very closely linked with being humble. It seems that many today would do good to be humiliated that they may be humbled or suffer humiliation in silence to show their humility.
Who knows more about being humiliated than Christ? Let's ponder this for a moment. Christ was the one that all things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. Christ, the uncreated one, became as a created one and suffered and died under the wickedness of created beings. Can anything be compared to that? This is much worse than what we could place ourselves into. Even if your own child were to take you, strip you down naked, tie you to a rack in the back of a truck, run through a car wash, then drive around the city with you in the back all the while someone was pouring feces on you, as graphic is that would be, that really doesn't compare. He could have called multitudes of angels down, yet he suffered in silence. He was the Lamb of God. He was slaughtered. And what did he say? I'm coming back to judge you! No. Father! Forgive them for they know not what they do! Is that your character? Do you suffer in silence or squawk that all may hear your roar of complaint?
When one is brought to a place of humility and death it brings that person into union with Christ. The Bible says that God humbleth [himself] to behold [the things that are] in heaven, and in the earth! He surely is the High and Lofty One that inhabits eternity yet would have pity upon a sinner that humbles himself. We are to be united with Christ in His death. In that union is bliss and joy that is unutterable. Only a Christian can fathom what I mean by that last statement. The Christian life many times seems to be a paradox. The apostles rejoiced in that they were counted worthy to suffer for Christ. What? They rejoiced when they were suffering? Why? Because they were brought into identification with Christ.
I've found when God reveals himself to someone it is nearly always humiliating. It brings a person to a point where they feel as though they are utterly nothing. Most people don't want a deeper walk with God because they don't want to be humiliated before Him. It's that plain and simple. Most are afraid to have their inward parts brought before their attention. They would rather do something outward than have an inward change. Many people that don't want to be embarrassed will always look nice on the outside, but will never show their real self. Really it is a form of pride expressing itself. One that is humble doesn't boast about themselves inward or outward because they haven't deceived themselves or try to deceive others. The one who is humble doesn't focus on what man thinks, but only God. The truly humble servant is submitted to his master and will boldly stand for him. Anything else that may hide under a mask called humility is a deception.
It is in this place of this humiliation that we see our complete need of a Savior. Jesus said in Matthew 23:12 And whosoever shall exalt himself shall be abased; and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted. These words emanated so clearly from Christ because this is a great summation of what He did. He came to this earth, humbling himself, and now his name is above every name. Now all that humble themselves can be seated with him in heavenly places. Let Him receive glory! Amen.
It's so simple, yet profound how in the school of God certain events can seemly crush you. They crush you but at the same time it seems that it only compacts you together that you may be even more solid in Him than ever before. Christians should never be afraid to stand up in the midst of a wicked world and proclaim His truth. It may seem to be humiliating to be the odd man out but let us remember Christ suffered outside the gate. He was put outside the city and humiliated before all.
Hebrews 13:13-16 says this, Let us go forth therefore unto him without the camp, bearing his reproach. For here have we no continuing city, but we seek one to come. By him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of [our] lips giving thanks to his name. But to do good and to communicate forget not: for with such sacrifices God is well pleased.
| 2007/1/11 22:19||Profile|
| Re: Humiliation Brings Union with Christ|
| 2007/1/11 23:06||Profile|
Santa Clara, CA
| Re: Humiliation Brings Union with Christ|
Most people don't want a deeper walk with God because they don't want to be humiliated before Him.
Josh, thank you for this. It can be sometimes distressing that some very good things tend to just fall off the map as it were. This has also entered and become part of a larger consideration and thought if anything, better to ride on your coattails here, hoping others might read your expressions as well.
[b]Hating this life[/b]
I do. Truly I do ...
Joh 12:25 He that loveth his life shall lose it; and he that [u]hateth his life in this world[/u] shall keep it unto life eternal.
Most of the past week found myself often exclaiming this out-loud, [i]Hate this life![/i]. It is once again the whole of that never ending debate about Paul's "[i]Wretched man that I am[/i]", the chapter breaks, the eradication thereof, what he meant, what he didn't mean ... The deliverance through Jesus Christ our Lord. But it keeps coming back to ... practical, daily out workings.
Rom 7:23 But I see another law in my members, [b]warring against[/b] the law of my mind, and [u]bringing me into captivity to[/u] the law of sin which is in my members.
For all the rounds, time and time again cannot but come to something of a conclusion ...
Rom 7:25 I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin.
... [i]deliver me from the body of this death?[/i]
Right there a flood of expression comes in;
Rom 6:7 For he that is dead is freed from sin.
Luk 14:26 If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his [u]own life[/u] also, he cannot be my disciple.
1Pe 4:1 Forasmuch then as Christ hath suffered for us in the flesh, arm yourselves likewise with the same mind: for he that hath suffered in the flesh hath [u]ceased[/u] from sin;
I full well know and understand the very consensus of what all is to be understood of our [i]being dead[/i], [i]putting to death[/i] ...
Rom 8:13 For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye [i]through the Spirit do [u]mortify[/u] the deeds of the body[/i], ye shall live.
That temptations come. Trials come. That they are often strong, too strong, like a flood. The very penchant the enemy always goes after, that weakest point, that thing you "love to hate" and hate to love. Honesty requires it, what is a temptation other than an appeal to gratify some lust, some thing the flesh desires, [i]that body of death[/i]? Even full well knowing the outcome, knowing that attached is a lie at the end of it, [i]regret[/i] ... That terrible feeling, regret, such a potent factor one would think to dissuade a caving into sin and yet ...
Mentioned elsewhere about musing upon how true death is the cessation of sinning.
Rom 6:7 For he that is dead is freed from sin.
A message from John MacArthur was drawing off oddly enough a different passage altogether, mentioned above, 1 Peter 4:1 and following. But my thoughts kept jumping back to Romans 6:7, tying this together, drawing off of it, perhaps it was this comment that stuck;
[i]"Because he who has suffered in the flesh has ceased from sin." That's one aspect of it. We noted in our last study some of the discussion regarding that phrase and I shared with you the conclusion that I have out of this text that what he is talking about there is very simple. What he is saying is if they kill you, you will cease from sin. The phrase "suffered in the flesh" again at the end of verse 1 means the same as it meant in the beginning of verse 1, and it has to do with the death of Christ, it has to do with death. What he is saying is if you die you cease from sin.
The point is this, the worst that your persecutors can do to you is kill you and if they kill you, the battle is over. Does that sound inviting? It should. That's the idea. And if you're armed with that idea, you will not recant, you'll have courage and boldness and confidence and strength in the midst of any trial, any difficulty, any persecution, any threat.[/i]
Just as interesting as I often observe here amongst ourselves, are the things that draw our attention, the aspects at any given time. Very much that strange phenomenon often noted how two different people can get quite different things from the same sermon.
Courage and boldness, [i]confidence[/i] ... Seem to recall something up here somewhere discussing this very thing and yet tying it to [i]presumption[/i]. But I digress. The emphasis far from all that, [i]the battle is over ... if you die you cease from sin.[/i]
[b]"Sin in the believer is a burden which afflicts him, rather than a pleasure which delights him."[/b] - John Owen
To ask the honest question to my own mind, is it the desire to step out of the battle, by death, the affliction, the regret, what it costs [i]me[/i]? Personal regret, the chastisement that comes, the withdrawal of the Lords presence ... Is that the motivation? Guilt?
Or is it something else altogether, honestly, other.
Joh 8:29 And He who sent Me is with Me. The Father has not left Me alone, for I always do those things which please Him.
That offense, that negative opposite of [i]those things that please Him[/i]. [u][i]Always[/i][/u]. That we cannot say [i]always[/i], that is the agitation, that is the offense, that is the [i]body of death[/i] that we tote around. That we fail and even fail [i]on purpose[/i] though we could but wish it away by way of excuse, by circumstance, by blame...
1Jo 1:8 If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.
Really do not wish to get into all kinds of theological pretzels*, abstract notions, it comes back full circle to; [i]he that hateth his life in this world[/i].
Give up? Long for death so that I might not sin against Him? Yes and no. There is something of a strong fight inwardly, of unfinished business certainly on the one hand. Can hardly bring myself to throw up even knowing the relief it might bring when afflicted with sickness, will fight it's natural heaving with every last ounce of control, strength, will, whatever you might wish to call it. Strange analogy perhaps, but even death itself similar in the past, that idea that you will have to kill me to kill me. So strong the desire to keep on living. Surely not an entirely isolated effort, the will to keep on living, delay death, cheat it, fight it, survive, live on.
Such a paradox! Recalling even Oswald Chambers here speaking of how [i]living[/i] is the difficulty not dying. And for us, the reborn, how much more the difficulty? Striving against sin, that we might not again offend Him who died for us, if this truly be our honest motivation.
And still there is yet more.
Excerpted a couple of thoughts again from the message I mentioned;
[i]Secondly in our last study we noted that you must have a good memory about what sin did to Christ and, secondly, a good memory about what sin [u]has done to Christians[/u]. Second part of verse 1, it kills them, too. Not only does it kill them from time to time, there are martyrs, those who have died for the cause of Christ, but it causes them, note this, to battle all their life long until they die. The implication of the end of verse 1 is that the only way to cease from sin is to die. We ought to hate sin because it kills Christ, we ought to hate sin because it keeps believers from being what God has intended them to be, perfect, holy, Christlike, free from sin. It restrains us from being what we ought to be. It makes us do what we don't want to do and not do what we want to do, it creates a terrible warfare. It provides for us a certain kind of bondage from which we can never be fully liberated. And that is why we cry out for the redemption of our body in Romans chapter 8.[/i]
For all the prophecy and the things we can get ourselves caught up in, the controversies, todays headlines, tomorrows prognostications. Again, I must ask the pertinent question; What [i][b]is[/b][/i] the [i]Lords[/i] controversy? Is this it? Is it this matter of honesty, inwardly that keeps coming up time and again, is that 'prophetic', [i]prophetic enough[/i]?
This has got to be getting quite long by now and have no neat and tidy way of making some nice all encompassing concluding statement. This natural\spiritual battle, which will have the ascendancy? I see it, recognize it for what it is and still ... failure. This would be nice to conclude with;
[i]Do not love the world, nor the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him, because all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. And the world passes away, and the lust of it, but he who does the will of God abides forever.[/i] 1Jo 2:15-17
Tying again, [i]hating ones life in [u]this[/u] world, the form and substance, the system of manipulation and gloss and sheen, the whole great cover up that it is. Gods great creation marred and practically barred by what man, you and me included, have done to it. "[i]And the world passes away, and the lust of it[/i]". Oh thank God! The whole thing does need one great makeover does it not? As terrible and frightening as it is, the whole purging and cleansing by fire that is to be anticipated ...
2Pe 3:7 But the heavens and the earth, which are now, by the same word are kept in store, [b]reserved[/b] unto fire against the day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men.
And the paradox of understanding, not desiring [i]that day[/i] ...
Amo 5:18 Woe unto you that desire the day of the LORD! wherefore would ye have the day of the LORD? it is darkness, and not light.
And yet realizing that it [i]must[/i] come.
Having great difficulty bringing this all to a close. Perhaps it's just unfinished thinking and guttural response to so much. The self indulgence that I see in those I love and then out there in the world. Even in the greater reaches of 'Christendom'. Whatever might have been said about the 'me' generation doesn't seem to have moved on past the concept, but just more fully embraced it, gluttony has eaten itself into just more and more unending replacements of the temporal, unsatisfying as it all is ... just one more 'thing' to replace the last thing consumed. Whatever the thing is, a philosophy, some material trinket, some drama played out on TV mimicking a already mimicked life. The church hardly any different when it comes right down to it. Little to no transformation. (Oh it's there, in spurts and sputters, thank God for the one! For the few, for the [i]not many[/i]). The compounding of the shallows and the shadows, it is all so lamentable to borrow our brother MC's words.
Humiliation must come in here somewhere. A very necessary and needed attribute. Humility and pride the tall orders of the day for us, to deal with these things, this being our prophecy, our very honesty. Why not? Why not humiliation and embarrassment, admittance and confession, seems we have a program for anything but this. Scripturally it is highly supported, why will we not embrace it, rather to spend our time in controversies over doctrine and fine points of the law, things important enough in the right perspective but so often the overindulgence leading only to another break and division amongst ourselves.
Revival is needed is it not? Is there any other way? That God might step down [i]again[/i] into our midst and do that which only He can do anyway, seeing that we are by and large colossal failures with our own efforts.
Could we humble ourselves to something of a commitment to pray that He would indeed come interrupt all the madness ...
* Transcript [url=http://www.gty.org/resources.php?section=transcripts&aid=215981]here[/url] and as a side note, even trying to just track this down found a depletion of spirit, to even Google John MacArthur's name is to bring out a whole horde of incredible reaction and dissection of him and his expressions. It is just uncanny what some of us "Christians" are willing to do to war over 'doctrine' excerpting and pouring into the context all kinds of 'heretical' notions, this sort of cannibalism where we eat our own kind ... Humiliation is fitting.
| 2007/1/13 11:10||Profile|
It is just uncanny what some of us "Christians" are willing to do to war over 'doctrine' excerpting and pouring into the context all kinds of 'heretical' notions, this sort of cannibalism where we eat our own kind ... Humiliation is fitting.
:-) I know there has been times on this board and others that I have been humiliated because I was over zealous on something I didn't have enough knowledge on. I'm sure most of us that have been here for awhile can relate.
| 2007/1/13 22:11||Profile|
| Re: Humiliation Brings Union with Christ|
PreachParsly, good word indeed.
Am more and more convinced that this is the most pressing need in my own life, this genuine lowliness of heart and humiliation. Far too often I've choosen self-preservation.
I think I remember Richard Owen Roberts saying that God only dwells in two places, the High and Holy Place, and with those who are contrite and humble(Is 57:15).
We are certainly not going up.
Maybe brother Mike has the right idea for us then...
"Could we humble ourselves to something of a commitment to pray that He would indeed come interrupt all the madness"
Christopher Joel Dandrow
| 2007/1/13 23:40||Profile|