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  • Writer's pictureSt. John's Lutheran

Through Humility and Faith - We Have Salvation In Christ Jesus!

Young woman praying in a church.

Matthew 23:1-12

Then Jesus said to the crowds and to his disciples: 2 ”The teachers of the law and the Pharisees sit in Moses’ seat. 3So you must be careful to do everything they tell you. But do not do what they do, for they do not practice what they preach. 4They tie up heavy, cumbersome loads and put them on other people’s shoulders, but they themselves are not willing to lift a finger to move them. 5 ”Everything they do is done for people to see: They make their phylacteries wide and the tassels on their garments long; 6 they love the place of honor at banquets and the most important seats in the synagogues; 7 they love to be greeted with respect in the marketplaces and to be called ‘Rabbi’ by others. 8 ”But you are not to be called ‘Rabbi,’ for you have one Teacher, and you are all brothers. 9And do not call anyone on earth ‘father,’ for you have one Father, and he is in heaven. 10Nor are you to be called instructors, for you have one Instructor, the Messiah. 11The greatest among you will be your servant. 12For those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.

December 8, 2021 One of the most explicit virtues that we see and learn from the life of Jesus is the virtue of humility. The apostle Paul writes about this clearly in the Book of Philippians chapter 2. Jesus went from the highest possible place of divinity to the lowest possible place of humanity. He did this absolutely willingly and in total submission and obedience to His Father. Therefore, humility is something critically important in the life and witness of a Christian. On the other side — arrogance, pride, rebellion and a life of disobedience is the most revealing character of Satan. However, we also see those kinds of behaviors and characters among people who consider themselves religious. That’s why Jesus is challenging that nature of sin in humanity through this text in Matthew 23. No one can see and no one can follow God without humility. Humility is coming and standing before God and admitting and confessing our shortcomings and declaring before the God of the universe that there is absolutely nothing that we can do without Him. And faith is standing before the God almighty and declaring that there is nothing impossible with him. Humility is the other side of faith and faith is the other side of humanity. Therefore, faith is a means of salvation which means humility is also another means of salvation. The Law of God brings us to humility while the Gospel of Jesus Christ brings us to faith. Through humility and faith, we complete our salvation in Jesus Christ. Those who exalt themselves will ultimately be humiliated while those who humiliate themselves or humble themselves before God will always be exalted by God.

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