– The Humble King – Eternally Secure

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What a journey!

As I wrap up this little study of Jesus and humility, I can’t help but notice how Jesus has humbled me. I am seeing how I often confine His majesty in my life. He is so much greater than I have ever imagined! Though His humbling hand has been heavy at times, He has proven His great faithfulness once again; I can’t help but love Him more.

Before we end our study of The Humble King, I want to share one last truth I have been learning; True Security is Found in Humility.

In his letter to the early church, Peter offers this encouraging exhortation:

Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, casting all your anxieties on Him, because He cares for you.

1 Peter 5:6-7

When Peter wrote this letter, the early church was experiencing a great deal of persecution. Many Christians were being arrested, mistreated, and even killed. In fact, Peter himself was martyred a few years after this letter was written.

Yet despite the persecution and pain, Peter knew where his true resource was; Jesus Himself. By humbling himself under the mighty hand of God, Peter revealed where he was placing his faith. He was convinced; Jesus would exalt him at the proper time, all he needed to do was rest in the sovereign arms of God. He denied self-reliance and humbled himself.

And all anxiety fled… 

Peter understood that he was eternally secure in Jesus. By humbling himself in Jesus, he was firmly securing himself in the heavenly places, untouchable by the schemes of man. If anything was to happen to him, it would have to go through Jesus first. Therefore, he had no need to be anxious; Jesus was in control.

Truly, there is real security in humbling ourselves to Jesus. We never need to fear the future when we are in the loving arms of God. He is good and His ways are perfect.

What is scaring you? What causes your chest to tighten with anxiety? Don’t fear, humble yourself and find the security of soul that can never be taken from you; Look to Jesus.

Yours in Jesus,

TJMcPherson

(P.S. How has Jesus been speaking to you throughout this series? If you would like, leave a comment below and share, I would love to hear from you!)

– The Humble King – Highly Exalted

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I hope you have enjoyed this study of Jesus and humility, I know I have. As I have been digging deeper into all of this, I am absolutely overwhelmedEverywhere I turn, all I see is Jesus walking in humility; when He’s pleading with the Pharisees, healing the sick, teaching His disciples, and most poignantly, in His relationship with the Father. It is becoming even more clear to me that I cannot separate Jesus and humility. He truly is the Humble King.

There is something else I am learning; The Father Exalts the Humble. Let’s take a look at Philippians 2:8-9 as an example. It reads like this:

…He humbled Himself (Jesus) by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. Therefore God has highly exalted Him and bestowed on Him the name that is above every name.

Philippians 2:8-9

I love this language. Notice what Paul says at the onset of this passage, “He humbled Himself by becoming obedient…” Jesus, driven by His great love for His Father, actively traded His own will for the will of the Father. He became obedient, disregarding the cares of the world, and pursued His Father’s desires. This is how Jesus humbled Himself…

Do you want to dive really deep? Here we go…I hope this makes sense.

Jesus’ love for His Father was the means by which He humbled Himself. Notice that Paul did not say “Jesus humbled Himself and became obedient…” He specifically says “He humbled Himself by becoming obedient…” Paul is showing us how Jesus humbled Himself. He is trying to make it very clear that Jesus, through His love-driven obedience to the Father, was stripped of all pride and self-reliance; He was humbled.

Really think on this for a moment. Jesus’ love-driven obedience to the Father was the all-consuming purpose of His life. Because of this, every desire that was contrary to this pursuit must have been shoved aside; humbled.

And this is what God deemed worthy of exalting. God exalted the man that viewed Him as supremely worthy. He exalted the man that, through a love-driven obedience, humbled Himself and sought after God with His whole heart. This Jesus, the Humble King, has become the new and better Adam (Rom. 5:19) leading us forward by His example of humble obedience.

My Heart’s Desire

Oh, how I want to grow in this. I am finding that my darkest moments are brought about by a lack of love-driven obedience to Jesus. I seek to find fulfillment and joy in something other than Jesus and then become full of pride, self-reliance, and joylessness. Maybe you’re like me.

If that is the case, why don’t we “lay aside every weight and the sin which so easily entangles us, and run with endurance this race that is set before us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the Author and Perfecter of our faith…

I am sure of it, Jesus will lead us in victory, in humility, and in obedience. He is our greatest treasure!

I love you all,

TJMcPherson

– The Humble King – Humble Beginnings

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In my study of Jesus and His display of humility, I have been overwhelmed with a new sense of attraction towards Him. His humility is so inviting, so approachable. As I spend a little time over the next few posts looking at our Humble King, it is my prayer that you will be attracted to Jesus in a new and fresh way as well. Let’s jump in!

At the beginning of His earthly ministry, Jesus goes down to the Jordan river to be baptized by John the Baptist. Matthew’s Gospel reads like this:

Then Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan to John, to be baptized by him. John would have prevented Him, saying, “I need to be baptized by you, and do you come to me?” But Jesus answered him, “Let it be so now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.” Then he consented.

Matthew 3:13-15

What a beautiful picture. Can you place yourself in John’s shoes for just a moment? Jesus, the long-awaited Messiah, the Anointed One of God, is walking towards you. All your life, even from the time of your conception (you’ve got to check out Luke 1:39-44), you have been waiting for this day with great anticipation and joy. Finally, the Messiah has come and will deliver Israel from her oppressors. Finally, the Anointed One will reveal His strong arm and destroy Rome with its oppression.

And this is where the picture unravels for John… Jesus is not coming as a conquering Messiah, ready to enact justice upon the enemies of God (at least not in the way he understood.) No. To John’s amazement, Jesus is among the crowd of sinners, awaiting His turn in line to be baptized. Can you here the surprise and bewilderment in his voice, “I need to be baptized by You, and do You come to me?”

Ah, but this is our Jesus. Always ready to identify with the sinner, ready to submit to the Father and fulfill all that has been commanded of Him, ready to humble Himself and let John, His creation, take Him by the hand and dip Him in the Jordan. Always ready to humble Himself.

This was the opening of His earthly ministry; a display of humility. This is who Jesus has revealed Himself to be; a Humble King

Oh, how this utterly defies the arrogance that I am so prone to walk in! When I see Jesus for who He is, I am immediately drawn to die to myself and to lovingly submit to Him. His humility attracts me like nothing else can. May He draw us deeper and deeper still!

Questions to Get You Seeking

When was the last time you were still and just embraced Jesus? How long has it been since you gave yourself over to Him, not in the name of duty or obligation, but in intimacy and with a desire to be one with Him? These are the questions I am asking myself.

“May this be life’s aim, still to explore the wealth in His name!”

TJMcPherson

A New Series – The Humble King

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Humility…

What a slippery word. It represents something that we all desperately want, yet, if we are being honest, is something that seems to evade us at the worst of times. The moment we begin to get this humility thing down, we start feeling proud about our humility…or if you are like me, you learn that you can do “humble things” while being completely self-centered. Pretty encouraging stuff, huh? Yikes.

Well, that is why I want to take the next three weeks to look at Jesus and see what real humility looks like. I want to be like Him and walk in humility. I want to please my Father and shine like a light in the midst of a proud and wayward generation, don’t you?

Before we launch into this series for the next three weeks, let’s take a look at what humility is.

Humility is a State-of-Being, Not Something We Do

Think on this: When was the last time you complimented someone and said something like this, “wow, that took some real humility.” Were you taking note of the action or thing that your friend did? Not really, right? You were probably more impressed with the way or the manner in which the said deed was done. They did what they did in humility.

Humility is the Antithesis of Pride

Where pride exists, humility is absent…where humility exists, pride is absent. Take Paul’s conversion story in Acts chapter 9 as an example. When Jesus reveals Himself to Saul of Tarsus, Saul collapses and is blinded. As he stumbles about in his blindness, Saul is absolutely humbled. All that he was, all that he leaned upon, and all that he pridefully claimed as his own in Judaism was stripped away. He was humbled and his pride was destroyed.

Jesus is Humility

Jesus has always been. There was never a moment in time when Jesus was absent or non-existent. He is the Eternal Life (1 John ch.1). If that is true, then there was never a moment when Jesus was not being humble, it is who He is. He never steps outside of humility. He never does anything out of pride; He is always humble. Dig a little deeper…we only know what humility looks like because Jesus has been revealing Himself since the beginning of creation. Ponder this: Jesus is humility.

Like I said earlier, I want to be humble. But I guess I am really saying I want to be more intimate with the Person of Jesus. I love Him and I hope you do too.

Will you join me for the next three weeks and lean into Jesus, The Humble King?

 

Praying with Joy

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For the past couple of months, I have been memorizing Paul’s letter to the Philippians. Now, I admit, the memorization process has been rather slow…however it has been so rewarding! One passage that has really impressed me is Paul’s prayer for the Philippians.

In his opening statement to the Philippians, the Apostle Paul makes this statement:

“I thank my God in all my remembrance of you, always in every prayer of mine for you all, making my prayer with joy…

Let’s hone in on what Paul is saying here. The word “making” is the greek word “poieo.” Though seemingly insignificant, this little word is the key to understanding what Paul is trying to convey to the Philippian church.

Poieo” is commonly translated into the English words, make, do, work, produce…etc. It carries the idea of someone or something producing something from their inner being. A great example of this is an apple tree. When an apple tree “produces” or “poieo’s” an apple, we are not alarmed or impressed in any way because apple trees ALWAYS produce apples. However, if an apple tree started bearing oranges, we would certainly take notice. In fact, we would begin to question whether or not the said “apple tree” was really an apple tree. The hanging oranges would testify against the “apple tree” and prove that the “apple tree” is actually an ORANGE TREE…the fruit of the tree must correlate with the innate nature of the tree.

The same can be said for us. Jesus tells us that from the abundance of our hearts we speak and act and therefore display the substance of our inner lives (Matt. 12:33-37.) Whether we like it or not, the true substance of our hearts will be displayed through our words and actions.

This is true for Paul. He tells the Philippians that he “makes his prayer with joy” when he prays for them. Knowing what we know of the word “poieo,” we can see that Paul is actually overflowing with joy when he prays for the Philippians. He is not working up joy or following a 5-step process to attain joy. He is simply revealing the true substance of his heart; joy.

Is this not the fruit of the Spirit of Jesus dwelling in Paul? (read Galatians 5:16-24) Oh, what freedom is his! Though he formally walked in the rigorous ways of devout Judaism, Paul now walks in the freedom of the Spirit of God. Being full of Jesus, Paul now overflows with the inner substance of Christ. 

What would it look like if you were so intimate and in-step with Jesus, that the fruit of your life was the fruit of the life of Christ? Would your prayer life reflect that of the Apostle Paul’s? Full of joy and abounding with love for your brothers and sisters, would your prayer life move to a whole new level?

Let’s drop every weight and take on His yoke, learn from Him, and be trees that bear His fruit. It will be our greatest joy.

Yours in Jesus,

TJMcPherson