Wednesday, May 15, 2013

The Unavoidable Revelation of My Pride

“We give thanks to You, O God, we give thanks, for Your name is near; men declare Your wondrous works. When I select an appointed time, it is I Who judge with equity...‘I said to the boastful, “Do not boast,” And to the wicked, “ not speak with insolent pride.”’ For not from the east, nor from the west, nor from the desert comes exaltation; but God is the Judge; He puts down one and exalts another” (Psalm 75:1,2,4-7).

“Jesus said to them...‘You brood of vipers, how can you, being evil, speak what is good? For the mouth speaks out of that which fills the heart. The good man brings out of his good treasure what is good; and the evil man brings out of his evil treasure what is evil. But I tell you that every careless word that people speak, they shall give an accounting for it in the day of judgment. For by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned’” (Matthew 12:25,34-37).

I’m better at “careless words” than I’d like to be – particularly those woven from threads of “boasting,” “insolent pride,” and self-exaltation. I know the heart from which these words arise. I know the Judge (John 5:19-30; Acts 10:42,43; 17:30,31) – Who is also the Lord and Savior of the confession that will save on the last day (Romans 10:9,10).

Words of “EXALT ME” (no matter how craftily they're disguised) and words thankfully declaring Christ’s wondrous saving, ruling, and judging works don’t belong in the same heart or the same mouth. It is not just enough to be silent; the “evil treasure” is still there down deep. The “good treasure” of God’s truth in His Word needs to be driven deep by the power of the Author of that Word, the Holy Spirit. It is on Him I am desperately leaning more and more these days, prayerfully filling my heart with Christ, Christ alone, Christ crucified and risen and ascended and ruling from on high. Only then will any declaration of His “wondrous works” be more than a shallow echo.

“For consider [often and deeply!] your calling, brethren, that there were not many wise according to the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble; but God has chosen the foolish things of the world [the reality that counters my prideful self-image] to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world [the reality that counters my prideful self-image] to shame the things which are strong, and the base things of the world and the despised [the reality that counters my prideful self-image] God has chosen, the things that are not, so that He may nullify the things that are, so that no man may boast before God. But by His doing you are in Christ Jesus, Who became to us wisdom from God, and righteousness and sanctification, and redemption, so that, just as it is written, ‘LET HIM WHO BOASTS, BOAST IN THE LORD [Jeremiah 9:23,24].’ And when I came to you, brethren, I did not come with superiority of speech or of wisdom, proclaiming to you the testimony of God. For I determined to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ, and Him crucified” (1 Corinthians 1:26-2:2).

No comments: