In my senior year, one of our English projects was to write a sermonette. These sermons, about 2-3 pages, were spoken in class then collected into a devotional book. As getting ideas for blogging constantly is difficult, I decided to go through this devotional and write a post about some of the ideas that come up in each of them, with some of my input added.
The first one in the book is on humility and is written by Becca. Humility is “one of the most misinterpreted Christian virtues. We often see it as abjection of self-contempt, and instill in ourselves a false modesty that in fact deters us from reaching our highest potential for the glory of God.” Humility is not about hating oneself. Yes, we are to think poorly and hate our sinful nature, but we must not think poorly of the regenerated state that is from and is powered by the Spirit. It isn’t a self loathing, but an understanding of the proper order of things. Becca adds that if we hate ourselves we limit our ability to use our gifts for God (different from false modesty). We are to understand that we are subject to God, and so follow his commands and love our neighbors. So what does humility look like? Truly we must look at Philippians 2:8
8 And being found in appearance as a man,
he humbled himself
by becoming obedient to death—
even death on a cross!”
Christ was humble and we must imitate his humility and partake in it (by it do I mean humility or Christ’s humility? Is his humility imparted onto us?).
Becca goes on to talk about how humility is the most fleeting virtue and quotes C.S. Lewis, “almost immediately pride — pride at his own humility — will appear.” Pride in humility. How defeating. Is pride stronger than humility?
It is interesting that humility is referred to as a Christian virtue. Going through Torrey I have read Aquinas, Plato, Aristotle, Augustine, Dante, and other Church fathers. The three theological virtues are faith, hope, and love while the four cardinal virtues are temperance, fortitude, prudence, and justice. Whenever I hear the term virtue my ears perk up. No, the seven virtues are not the only virtues (Aristotle goes into many) but it is interesting to think of a set of earthly virtues and a set of Christian virtues. I wonder what the whole scheme of them is?