Tag Archives: lift up
Some days I work from home. Today happened to be one of those days. I sat here typing away, but I started to hear crying. It was not a human cry, but a dog. I recognized that sound. I looked around to see where the sound was coming as both of my dogs were silently sleeping at my feet. Outside, in the middle of the highway, was a large retriever.
I am not sure what happened, but it was certainly a blessing to see what followed. The large retriever, wearing a bandana around its neck, sat still as cars drove around. Traffic was building up, but that didn’t stop some passerbys to pull over and assist the dog in need. The people all from different paths, all going in a different direction, united together. Their differences did not matter. Their opinions didn’t matter. At this moment, they united together to serve. Someone volunteered a blanket. Someone volunteered their cell phone. Many volunteered to help carry the dog to safety. Later, a police officer transported the dog a few blocks away to the veterinarian.
Unity was something Jesus prayed for and it was something discussed so often in the Bible. Unity is necessary for the Church. We all may come together from different paths, different opinions, etc., but we are united by the Spirit of God. If we each, led by the Holy Spirit, unite together for Christ Jesus, we can shine a light better than if we try to shine alone. If we unite together, we can serve more and reach more. We each complement each other well. If you have a problem uniting with others, talk to God about your prideful heart or your fears. Remind yourself of your purpose. We are to glorify God. Humble yourself before the Lord and ask that He help you to be more focused on the unity that He desires for His people. We can do more together.
“I have given them the glory You gave me, so they may be one as we are one. I am in them and You are in Me. May they experience such perfect unity that the world will know that You sent me and that You love them as much as You love me.” – John 17:22-23 [NLT]
[Two Men Who Prayed: Luke 18:9-14]
“Be humble or you’ll stumble.” – Dwight L. Moody
- I am the least of the apostles – 1 Corinthians 15:9
- I am the very least of all the saints. – Ephesians 3:8
- I am the foremost of sinners. – 1 Timothy 1:15
“I tell you, this man went down to his house justified, rather than the other. For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but the one who humbles himself will be exalted.” – Luke 18:14 [ESV]
Humbles Himself – Tapeinoó – humiliate, abase, bring low, humble self
Exalted – hupsoó – raise on high, lift up, set on high
“A person’s pride will humble him, but a humble spirit will gain honor.” – Proverbs 29:23 [HCSB]
“Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time.” – 1 Peter 5:6 [NIV]
We all fall short / Through Christ alone we are justified (Romans 3:23-24)
“Though I am righteous, my mouth will condemn me; Though I am guiltless, He will declare me guilty.” – Job 9:20 [NASB]
You cannot fake it / God knows your heart
“And He said to them, “You are those who justify yourselves in the sight of men, but God knows your hearts; for that which is highly esteemed among men is detestable in the sight of God.” – Luke 16:15 [NASB]
“I believe the first test of a truly great man is his humility. I do not mean by humility, doubt of his own power, or hesitation in speaking his opinion. But really great men have a … feeling that the greatness is not in them but through them; that they could not do or be anything else than God made them.” – John Riskin
Bible Study Questions:
1) What are some of the positive attributes of the Pharisee who prayed?
2) What are some of the negative attributes of the Pharisee who prayed?
3) How would you describe the Tax Collector who prayed? What were his good points?
4) What gets in the way of your humility?
5) What are some things you can do to help you live a humble life?
6) Luke 18:14 says, “I tell you, this man went down to his house justified, rather than the other. For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but the one who humbles himself will be exalted” (ESV).
What does it mean to be justified?
What does it mean that everyone who exalts himself will be humbled?
What does it mean that one who humbles himself will be exalted?
More Than A Story is a 12-week Sermon Series and Bible Study focused on the parables of Jesus.