THE SERVANT GENERAL
OUR THEME FOR 2018
HUMILITY IN GREATNESS
Today’s gospel: Luke 18:9-14
Today we have the parable of the Pharisee and the tax collector,
two men at prayer in the same temple addressing the one God
(v.10), but with two very different dispositions. One was
proud and the other was humble.
postures of the two are markedly in contrast.
Even as we love and serve God, how might we take the posture
of the Pharisee?
When we become self-righteous. Jesus “addressed
this parable to those who were convinced of their own
righteousness” (v.9a). We must never forget that
we are sinners and that before God, apart from His grace
and mercy, we are nothing.
we become triumphalistic. Jesus addressed those who “despised
everyone else.” (v.9b). This happens when we boast
of our accomplishments for the Lord and look down on others
who seem not to do as much. We must never forget that
apart from God we can do nothing, and that God accomplishes
things in spite of us.
we consider ourselves more of a leader, looking to its
trappings (power, position, prominence), rather than a
servant. We must never forget that there is only one Master,
and we are all his lowly and unprofitable servants.
we justify ourselves before God, rather than acknowledging
our falling short. We must never forget that only God
judges the justness and righteousness of our life and
deeds. Indeed, with regard to the Pharisee and the tax
collector, “the latter went home justified, not
the former” (v.14a).
Here then is God’s eternal principle: “for everyone
who exalts himself will be humbled, and the one who humbles
himself will be exalted.” (v.14b). One who exalts himself
will ultimately be cut down by God, for his own good. But
the one who humbles himself before God and before his fellowmen,
he it is who can be used by God and will be raised up by Him
for greatness? Yes, according to God’s will. But it
is up to us to lay the foundation. Avoid being selfist, self-focused,
selfish, self-righteous, self-exalting, self-promoting, self-satisfying
and self-serving. Bow down low before God, take the last place
with regards to others, and serve wholeheartedly without counting