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Why it matters: Exaltation is the lifting up or raising on high of a person, in words or actions. The exaltation of Jesus the Messiah, first on the cross and then in his resurrection, supplies a model of how God exalts the humble and obedient. God also humbles those who exalt themselves. Believers are called upon to exalt God in their praise of him.

It is possible to give outwardly and yet not be humbled inwardly. God hates the sin of pride, and He will chasten the proud believer until he is humbled. We tend to treat sin too lightly, even to laugh about it (“let your laughter be turned into mourning”). But sin is serious, and one mark of true humility is facing the seriousness of sin and dealing with our disobedience. “A broken and a contrite heart, O God, Thou wilt not despise” (Ps. 51:17).

This is a dangerous thing to pray. Sometimes we hear a believer pray, “O Master, humble me!”. Far better that we humble ourselves before God, confess our sins, weep over them, and turn from them.

To this man will I look, even to him that is poor and of a contrite spirit, and trembled at My Word

(Isa. 66:2).

We should consider this:

Yahweh [The Lord] is nigh unto them that are of a broken heart; and saves such as be of a contrite spirit

(Ps. 34:18)

If we obey God’s instructions, then God will draw near, cleanse us, and forgive us; and the wars will cease! We will not be at war with God, so we will not be at war with ourselves. This means we will not be at war with others.

And the work of righteousness shall be peace; and the effect of righteousness quietness and assurance forever

(Isa. 32:17)

I must put the government of my life on His shoulders and let Him become the Prince of Peace in my life. When I humble myself, God will exalt me through Jesus.

Here is the main thing. Jesus is serious. We need to take this to heart.

And he sat down and called the twelve. And he said to them, “If anyone would be first, he must be last of all and servant of all.

Mark 9:35

  • Psalm 75:6–7 — 6 For not from the east, nor from the west, Nor from the desert comes exaltation; 7 But God is the Judge; He puts down one and exalts another.
  • Genesis 39:1–6 — 1 Now Joseph had been taken down to Egypt; and Potiphar, an Egyptian officer of Pharaoh, the captain of the bodyguard, bought him from the Ishmaelites, who had taken him down there. 2 The Master was with Joseph, so he became a successful man. And he was in the house of his master, the Egyptian. 3 Now his master saw that Yahweh [the Lord] was with him and how Yahwey caused all that he did to prosper in his hand. 4 So Joseph found favor in his sight and became his personal servant; and he made him overseer over his house, and all that he owned he put in his charge. 5 It came about that from the time he made him overseer in his house and over all that he owned, the Master blessed the Egyptian’s house on account of Joseph; thus the Master’s blessing was upon all that he owned, in the house and in the field. 6 So he left everything he owned in Joseph’s charge; and with him there he did not concern himself with anything except the food which he ate. Now Joseph was handsome in form and appearance.
  • 1 Samuel 2:1–10 — 1 Then Hannah prayed and said, “My heart exults in the Master; My horn is exalted in the Master, My mouth speaks boldly against my enemies, Because I rejoice in Your salvation. 2 “There is no one holy like the Master, Indeed, there is no one besides You, Nor is there any rock like our God. 3 “Boast no more so very proudly, Do not let arrogance come out of your mouth; For the Master is a God of knowledge, And with Him actions are weighed. 4 “The bows of the mighty are shattered, But the feeble gird on strength. 5 “Those who were full hire themselves out for bread, But those who were hungry cease to hunger. Even the barren gives birth to seven, But she who has many children languishes. 6 “The Master kills and makes alive; He brings down to Sheol and raises up. 7 “The Master makes poor and rich; He brings low, He also exalts. 8 “He raises the poor from the dust, He lifts the needy from the ash heap To make them sit with nobles, And inherit a seat of honor; For the pillars of the earth are the Master’s, And He set the world on them. 9 “He keeps the feet of His godly ones, But the wicked ones are silenced in darkness; For not by might shall a man prevail. 10 “Those who contend with the Master will be shattered; Against them He will thunder in the heavens, The Master will judge the ends of the earth; And He will give strength to His king, And will exalt the horn of His anointed.”
  • 2 Samuel 7:18–29 — 18 Then David the king went in and sat before the Master, and he said, “Who am I, O Master God, and what is my house, that You have brought me this far? 19 “And yet this was insignificant in Your eyes, O Master God, for You have spoken also of the house of Your servant concerning the distant future. And this is the custom of man, O Master God. 20 “Again what more can David say to You? For You know Your servant, O Master God! 21 “For the sake of Your word, and according to Your own heart, You have done all this greatness to let Your servant know. 22 “For this reason You are great, O Master God; for there is none like You, and there is no God besides You, according to all that we have heard with our ears. 23 “And what one nation on the earth is like Your people Israel, whom God went to redeem for Himself as a people and to make a name for Himself, and to do a great thing for You and awesome things for Your land, before Your people whom You have redeemed for Yourself from Egypt, from nations and their gods? 24 “For You have established for Yourself Your people Israel as Your own people forever, and You, O Master, have become their God. 25 “Now therefore, O Master God, the word that You have spoken concerning Your servant and his house, confirm it forever, and do as You have spoken, 26 that Your name may be magnified forever, by saying, ‘The Master of hosts is God over Israel’; and may the house of Your servant David be established before You. 27 “For You, O Master of hosts, the God of Israel, have made a revelation to Your servant, saying, ‘I will build you a house’; therefore Your servant has found courage to pray this prayer to You. 28 “Now, O Master God, You are God, and Your words are truth, and You have promised this good thing to Your servant. 29 “Now therefore, may it please You to bless the house of Your servant, that it may continue forever before You. For You, O Master God, have spoken; and with Your blessing may the house of Your servant be blessed forever.”