Am I humble enough? Not yet and that is important to understand.
Who gets the credit? That is a central question.
God’s goal: In God’s world that He rules (the Kingdom), God gets the credit. The victory belongs to the Lord. God’s goal for us is to live a life of humility.Humility is central to relationships. Central to my relationship with Him. Central to my relationship with others.
Love does not boast. That is how I bless others and receive a blessing.
May I always give the Lord the credit. He is God. He is good. He is great.
Finally, all of you be like-minded and sympathetic, love one another, and be compassionate and humble, not paying back evil for evil or insult for insult but, on the contrary, giving a blessing, since you were called for this, so that you may inherit a blessing.
For the one who wants to love life
and to see good days,
let him keep his tongue from evil
and his lips from speaking deceit,
and let him turn away from evil
and do what is good.
Let him seek peace and pursue it,
because the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous
and his ears are open to their prayer.
But the face of the Lord is against
those who do what is evil.
Christian Standard Bible. (2020). (1 Peter 3:8–12). Nashville, TN: Holman Bible Publishers.
We should love one another, love our enemies, and love life. The news of impending persecution should not cause a believer to give up on life. What may appear to be “bad days” to the world can be “good days” for a follower of Jesus, if he will only meet certain conditions.
- We must deliberately decide to love life. This is an act of the will: “He who wills to love life.” It is an attitude of faith that sees the best in every situation. It is the opposite of the pessimistic attitude expressed in Ecclesiastes 2:17: “Therefore I hated life … for all is vanity and vexation of spirit.”
- We can decide to endure life and make it a burden, escape life as though we were running from a battle, or enjoy life because we know God is in control. Peter was not suggesting some kind of unrealistic psychological gymnastics that refused to face facts. Rather, he was urging his readers to take a positive approach to life and by faith make the most of every situation.
- We must control our tongues. Many of the problems of life are caused by the wrong words, spoken in the wrong spirit. Every disciple of Jesus should read James 3 regularly and pray Psalm 141:3 daily. How well Peter knew the sad consequences of hasty speech! There is no place for lies in the life of a saint.
- We must do good and hate evil. We need both the positive and the negative. The Old English word “eschew” means more than just “avoid.” It means “to avoid something because you despise and loathe it.” It is not enough for us to avoid sin because sin is wrong; we ought to shun it because we hate it.
- We must seek and pursue peace. “Happy are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God” (Matt. 5:9). If we go out and seek trouble, we will find it; but if we seek peace, we can find it as well. This does not mean “peace at any price,” because righteousness must always be the basis for peace. It simply means that a disciple exercises moderation as he relates to people and does not create problems because he wants to have his own way. “If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men” (Rom. 12:18). Sometimes it is not possible! While we are also admonished to work hard to achieve peace. It does not come automatically.
Jesus the Messiah’s humility as a model for others
Jesus is our model for humility. Jesus shows us the way. I am a disciple of Jesus. I must learn from Him. His yoke is easy. His burden is light. I have the Spirit of the living God in me to give me power. Now that is some very good news!
- John 13:12–17 (NASB) — So when He had washed their feet, and taken His garments and reclined at the table again, He said to them, “Do you know what I have done to you? “You call Me Teacher and Master; and you are right, for so I am. “If I then, the Master and the Teacher, washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet. “For I gave you an example that you also should do as I did to you. “Truly, truly, I say to you, a slave is not greater than his master, nor is one who is sent greater than the one who sent him. “If you know these things, you are blessed if you do them.
- Matthew 11:29–30 — “Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. “For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”
- Ephesians 5:25 — Husbands, love your wives, just as the Messiah also loved the church and gave Himself up for her,
- Philippians 2:5 —Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in the Messiah Jesus,
- 1 Peter 2:21 —For you have been called for this purpose, since the Messiah also suffered for you, leaving you an example for you to follow in His steps,