Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Humility: Day Three

In order to be humble, and give God all the glory that He deserves we must do good deeds in such a way that we will not get the credit. We must live our lives for “His name sake.” If you are a believer, then this is what you have been called to do. In fact His name (and by that I mean His Glory) should be our number one priority. The WESTMINSTER SHORTER CATECHISM puts it this way,
"Q. What is the chief end of man?
A. Man’s chief end is to glorify
God,and to enjoy him forever."
This confessional document is not Scripture, however it does a wonderful job of capturing the teaching of Scripture in this matter. I can say this easily because Scripture makes it clear that God’s name (His glory) is His number one priority.


1 Samuel 12:19-25 (ESV)
And all the people said to Samuel, "Pray for your servants
to the LORD your God, that we may not die, for we have added to all our sins this evil, to ask for ourselves a king." And Samuel said to the people, "Do not be afraid; you have done all this evil. Yet do not turn aside from following the LORD, but serve the LORD with all your heart.
And do not turn aside after empty things that cannot profit or deliver, for they are empty. For the LORD will not forsake his people, for his great name's sake, because it has pleased the LORD to make you a people for himself. Moreover, as for me, far be it from me that I should sin against the LORD by ceasing to pray for you, and I will instruct you in the good and the right way. Only fear the LORD and serve him
faithfully with all your heart. For consider what great things he has done for you. But if you still do wickedly, you shall be swept away, both you and your king."



Samuel should not have said “do not be afraid,” he should have said be afraid! The basis for Samuel’s exhortation was God’s name. Here we see that God’s radical commitment to His glory is good news for sinners. He blessed the people with grace so that He would receive the glory. This is the Gospel. God has set apart for Himself a people, through the atoning work of Christ, so that they can glorify His name forever. Very rarely do we hear it put this way, but God blesses us for His sake. God does not save someone because of who they are. God saves people because of who He is. Do you love the gospel because God has made much of you? Or, do you love the Gospel because it has freed you to make much of God forever?

Our joy should be rooted in the infinite value of God.

If you have great guilt in your life from sin your hope should not be in you, but rather your hope should be in the name of Christ. Then you can take the words of Samuel (do not be afraid) and make them your own. Do not get wrapped into esteeming yourself highly and think that it is the Gospel. The whole point of the Gospel is not that we are so good that God saved us, but rather that we are so bad yet because God is so good He has saved us.

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