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Do we see any gains in our attitude, our character, our personality, from the days of unleavened bread? What was the purpose of putting unleavened bread out of our homes and lives?

As we all know, putting unleavened bread out of our homes and lives is symbolic of putting vanity out of our lives. The antonym of vanity is humility.

On this last day of unleavened bread, I want to talk to you about humility, the theme of the days of unleavened bread.

On Passover we performed the rite of foot-washing as instructed in John 13. What was its meaning?

John 13:5-8 (NKJV) After that, He poured water into a basin and began to wash the disciples' feet, and to wipe <them> with the towel with which He was girded. {6} Then He came to Simon Peter. And <Peter> said to Him, "Lord, are You washing my feet?" {7} Jesus answered and said to him, "What I am doing you do not understand now, but you will know after this." {8} Peter said to Him, "You shall never wash my feet!" Jesus answered him, "If I do not wash you, you have no part with Me."
verses 14-17 (NKJV) "If I then, <your> Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another's feet. {15} "For I have given you an example, that you should do as I have done to you. {16} "Most assuredly, I say to you, a servant is not greater than his master; nor is he who is sent greater than he who sent him. {17} "If you know these things, blessed are you if you do them.

Foot-washing is an act of humility. It is an act of service. It ignores a person's position in life and places the washer in the role of a servant.

Matthew 18:3 tells us that we must all become as little children.

Mat 18:3-6 (NKJV) and said, "Assuredly, I say to you, unless you are converted and become as little children, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven. {4} "Therefore whoever humbles himself as this little child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. {5} "Whoever receives one little child like this in My name receives Me. {6} "But whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in Me to stumble, it would be better for him if a millstone were hung around his neck, and he were drowned in the depth of the sea.

Paul stated in 1 Corinthians 5 that we should adopt sincerity and truth over malice and wickedness.

1 Cor 5:7-8 (NKJV) Therefore purge out the old leaven, that you may be a new lump, since you truly are unleavened. For indeed Christ, our Passover, was sacrificed for us. {8} Therefore let us keep the feast, not with old leaven, nor with the leaven of malice and wickedness, but with the unleavened <bread> of sincerity and truth.

What was he talking about here? Leavening makes things puff up ... just like vanity. Let's read a few more scriptures about being puffed up.

1 Cor 4:18-19 (NKJV) Now some are puffed up, as though I were not coming to you. {19} But I will come to you shortly, if the Lord wills, and I will know, not the word of those who are puffed up, but the power.
1 Cor 5:2 (NKJV) And you are puffed up, and have not rather mourned, that he who has done this deed might be taken away from among you.
1 Cor 13:4 (NKJV) Love suffers long <and> is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up;
1 Cor 4:6 (NKJV) Now these things, brethren, I have figuratively transferred to myself and Apollos for your sakes, that you may learn in us not to think beyond what is written, that none of you may be puffed up on behalf of one against the other.

So taking sides against each other over some point of doctrine also causes us to be puffed up. Our pride is challenged.

Paul later compares knowledge with being puffed up. How can that be? Could a person be vain because of his or her knowledge?

1 Cor 8:1-3 (NKJV) Now concerning things offered to idols: We know that we all have knowledge. Knowledge puffs up, but love edifies. {2} And if anyone thinks that he knows anything, he knows nothing yet as he ought to know. {3} But if anyone loves God, this one is known by Him.

How often do you hear or read of the advancement of mankind, particularly regarding American know-how, when commentators try to compare us to other parts of the world? That is changing, and you will see why later. Were we a better nation when we were more concerned about helping others than of thinking too highly about ourselves. Or was our concern for others somewhat feigned in vanity? These concepts may seem foreign because vanity is very difficult for a person to see. It involves insight into one's motivation, and that can be very deceiving.

Pride was the original sin. We are going to see why God considered pride and humility so important that He assigned an entire week of each year toward overcoming pride and achieving humility. Again, pride is sin. Satan is an example.

Ezek 28:14-19 (NKJV) "You <were> the anointed cherub who covers; I established you; You were on the holy mountain of God; You walked back and forth in the midst of fiery stones. {15} You <were> perfect in your ways from the day you were created, Till iniquity was found in you. {16} "By the abundance of your trading You became filled with violence within, And you sinned; Therefore I cast you as a profane thing Out of the mountain of God; And I destroyed you, O covering cherub, From the midst of the fiery stones. {17} "Your heart was lifted up because of your beauty; You corrupted your wisdom for the sake of your splendor; I cast you to the ground, I laid you before kings, That they might gaze at you. {18} "You defiled your sanctuaries By the multitude of your iniquities, By the iniquity of your trading; Therefore I brought fire from your midst; It devoured you, And I turned you to ashes upon the earth In the sight of all who saw you. {19} All who knew you among the peoples are astonished at you; You have become a horror, And <shall be> no more forever."
1 Tim 3:6 (NKJV) ....... lest being puffed up with pride he fall into the <same> condemnation as the devil.
Isa 14:12-17 (NKJV) "How you are fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! <How> you are cut down to the ground, You who weakened the nations! {13} For you have said in your heart: 'I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God; I will also sit on the mount of the congregation On the farthest sides of the north; {14} I will ascend above the heights of the clouds, I will be like the Most High.' {15} Yet you shall be brought down to Sheol, To the lowest depths of the Pit. {16} "Those who see you will gaze at you, <And> consider you, <saying>: <'Is> this the man who made the earth tremble, Who shook kingdoms, {17} Who made the world as a wilderness And destroyed its cities, [Is this a prophesy too?] Who did not open the house of his prisoners?' [Is verse 17 a prophesy for our day?]
Prov 16:18-19 (NKJV) Pride <goes> before destruction, And a haughty spirit before a fall. {19} Better <to be> of a humble spirit with the lowly, Than to divide the spoil with the proud.

That may be part of the reason why this country has lost some of its respect and leadership in the world.

Notice Satan's appeal to Eve's vanity:

Gen 3:1-6 (NKJV) Now the serpent was more cunning than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said to the woman, "Has God indeed said, 'You shall not eat of every tree of the garden'?" {2} And the woman said to the serpent, "We may eat the fruit of the trees of the garden; {3} "but of the fruit of the tree which <is> in the midst of the garden, God has said, 'You shall not eat it, nor shall you touch it, lest you die.' " {4} Then the serpent said to the woman, "You will not surely die. {5} "For God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil." {6} So when the woman saw that the tree <was> good for food, that it <was> pleasant to the eyes, and a tree desirable to make <one> wise, she took of its fruit and ate. She also gave to her husband with her, and he ate.

There is a direct link between vanity and rebellion. The examples we have just read demonstrate this very well, but there is a parallel example which our society lives with every day: Schools tell our children to reject the principles of their parents and to conduct themselves according to what they think is right and wrong. The schools, inspired by Satan, are telling our children "Nothing will happen to you if you act independently. For in the day you question the principles your parents have taught you, 'your eyes will be opened', and you will be able to confidently make your own decisions as to what is right and wrong." And so we have children deciding for themselves, making their own principles and standards about drugs and sex and family values and lifestyles and concern for other people's life and property. Satan is still working on our vanity, calling it self-confidence, and freedom, and knowing all the while it will result in rebellion and death.

Even today we see the result of this rebellion in the violence and hatred expressed in political protests by people more interested in their personal desires than for the peace and quiet generated by a humble society. Think of people you've observed who had a problem with vanity or egotism and who then became rebellious toward whomever was in authority. We have all known some who have allowed their vanity, then rebellion, to take them right out of the church as well. But to this day they probably don't realize what really caused them to leave because, as I said before, vanity is hard for a person to see in himself, whether in society as a whole or in the church.

The Old Testament gives us two very good examples of the results of rebellion:

Num 12:1-10 (NKJV) Then Miriam and Aaron spoke against Moses because of the Ethiopian woman whom he had married; for he had married an Ethiopian woman. {2} So they said, "Has the LORD indeed spoken only through Moses? Has He not spoken through us also?" And the LORD heard <it>. {3} (Now the man Moses <was> very humble, more than all men who <were> on the face of the earth.) {4} Suddenly the LORD said to Moses, Aaron, and Miriam, "Come out, you three, to the tabernacle of meeting!" So the three came out. {5} Then the LORD came down in the pillar of cloud and stood <in> the door of the tabernacle, and called Aaron and Miriam. And they both went forward. {6} Then He said, "Hear now My words: If there is a prophet among you, <I>, the LORD, make Myself known to him in a vision; I speak to him in a dream. {7} Not so with My servant Moses; He <is> faithful in all My house. {8} I speak with him face to face, Even plainly, and not in dark sayings; And he sees the form of the LORD. Why then were you not afraid To speak against My servant Moses?" {9} So the anger of the LORD was aroused against them, and He departed. {10} And when the cloud departed from above the tabernacle, suddenly Miriam <became> leprous, as <white as> snow. Then Aaron turned toward Miriam, and there she was, a leper.
Num 16:2-11 (NKJV) and they rose up before Moses with some of the children of Israel, two hundred and fifty leaders of the congregation, representatives of the congregation, men of renown. {3} They gathered together against Moses and Aaron, and said to them, <"You take> too much upon yourselves, for all the congregation <is> holy, every one of them, and the LORD <is> among them. Why then do you exalt yourselves above the assembly of the LORD?" {4} So when Moses heard <it>, he fell on his face; {5} and he spoke to Korah and all his company, saying, "Tomorrow morning the LORD will show who <is> His and <who is> holy, and will cause <him> to come near to Him. That one whom He chooses He will cause to come near to Him. {6} "Do this: Take censers, Korah and all your company; {7} "put fire in them and put incense in them before the LORD tomorrow, and it shall be <that> the man whom the LORD chooses <is> the holy one. <You take> too much upon yourselves, you sons of Levi!" {8} Then Moses said to Korah, "Hear now, you sons of Levi: {9} "<Is it> a small thing to you that the God of Israel has separated you from the congregation of Israel, to bring you near to Himself, to do the work of the tabernacle of the LORD, and to stand before the congregation to serve them; {10} "and that He has brought you near <to Himself>, you and all your brethren, the sons of Levi, with you? And are you seeking the priesthood also? {11} "Therefore you and all your company <are> gathered together against the LORD. And what <is> Aaron that you complain against him?"

Verses 31-33 describe the results of their egotistic rebellion.

(Num 16:31-33 NKJV) Now it came to pass, as he [i.e., Moses] finished speaking all these words, that the ground split apart under them, {32} and the earth opened its mouth and swallowed them up, with their households and all the men with Korah, with all their goods. {33} So they and all those with them went down alive into the pit; the earth closed over them, and they perished from among the assembly.

These events were so important for Christians that Paul even made reference to them in 1 Corinthians 10:

1 Cor 10:5-12 (NKJV) But with most of them God was not well pleased, for <their bodies> were scattered in the wilderness. {6} Now these things became our examples, to the intent that we should not lust after evil things as they also lusted. {7} And do not become idolaters as <were> some of them. As it is written, "The people sat down to eat and drink, and rose up to play." {8} Nor let us commit sexual immorality, as some of them did, and in one day twenty-three thousand fell; {9} nor let us tempt Christ, as some of them also tempted, and were destroyed by serpents; {10} nor complain, as some of them also complained, and were destroyed by the destroyer. {11} Now all these things happened to them as examples, and they were written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the ages have come. {12} Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall.

How, then, do we remain unleavened? We have to be able to recognize our tendency toward vanity, self, egotism, pride, arrogance, conceit, and self-importance. Let's look at some scriptural admonitions:

Psa 19:12 (NKJV) Who can understand <his> errors? Cleanse me from secret <faults>.

All of us have secret faults; at least we think they are secret. If you wonder if others can see your secret faults, just ask your spouse. I'll guarantee you most, if not all of them, are known to your spouse, and probably many other people. But anyway, we think they are secret. But this verse has even more meaning. I believe David is asking God to clean up those faults that are not even known by David himself. That is a problem we could all share. But notice David's sincerity in wanting to correct even these faults. Do we share his zeal and determination to accomplish perfection?

Saul started out a very humble man but by the end of his life his humility was replaced by vanity.

1 Sam 9:21 (NKJV) And Saul answered and said, <"Am> I not a Benjamite, of the smallest of the tribes of Israel, and my family the least of all the families of the tribe of Benjamin? Why then do you speak like this to me?"

Saul was indeed humble, but notice the change by the time we get to chapter 15:

1 Sam 15:10-23 (NKJV) Now the word of the LORD came to Samuel, saying, {11} "I greatly regret that I have set up Saul <as> king, for he has turned back from following Me, and has not performed My commandments." And it grieved Samuel, and he cried out to the LORD all night. {12} So when Samuel rose early in the morning to meet Saul, it was told Samuel, saying, "Saul went to Carmel, and indeed, he set up a monument for himself; and he has gone on around, passed by, and gone down to Gilgal." {13} Then Samuel went to Saul, and Saul said to him, "Blessed <are> you of the LORD! I have performed the commandment of the LORD." {14} But Samuel said, "What then <is> this bleating of the sheep in my ears, and the lowing of the oxen which I hear?" {15} And Saul said, "They have brought them from the Amalekites; for the people spared the best of the sheep and the oxen, to sacrifice to the LORD your God; and the rest we have utterly destroyed." {16} Then Samuel said to Saul, "Be quiet! And I will tell you what the LORD said to me last night." And he said to him, "Speak on." {17} So Samuel said, "When you <were> little in your own eyes, <were> you not head of the tribes of Israel? And did not the LORD anoint you king over Israel? {18} "Now the LORD sent you on a mission, and said, 'Go, and utterly destroy the sinners, the Amalekites, and fight against them until they are consumed.' {19} "Why then did you not obey the voice of the LORD? Why did you swoop down on the spoil, and do evil in the sight of the LORD?" {20} And Saul said to Samuel, "But I have obeyed the voice of the LORD, and gone on the mission on which the LORD sent me, and brought back Agag king of Amalek; I have utterly destroyed the Amalekites. {21} "But the people took of the plunder, sheep and oxen, the best of the things which should have been utterly destroyed, to sacrifice to the LORD your God in Gilgal." [Sounds like Saul took a lesson from Adam, doesn't it.] {22} Then Samuel said: "Has the LORD <as great> delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, As in obeying the voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, <And> to heed than the fat of rams. {23} For rebellion <is as> the sin of witchcraft, And stubbornness <is as> iniquity and idolatry. Because you have rejected the word of the LORD, He also has rejected you from <being> king." .....
verse 35 (NKJV) And Samuel went no more to see Saul until the day of his death. Nevertheless Samuel mourned for Saul, and the LORD regretted that He had made Saul king over Israel.

What a change and what a sad ending. The humble Saul had been destroyed by vanity which resulted in rebellion. He was more concerned by impressing the people than by obeying God. It's too bad he couldn't have benefitted from King Solomon's words:

Prov 29:23 (NKJV) A man's pride will bring him low, But the humble in spirit will retain honor.

What about us? Is our kingdom to be stripped from us too, because of our vanity, our pride, our self-confidence in our own strength and judgments, our confidence that we can water down God's commands to meet our own wishes and objectives? Will God regret that He called us too?

The answer is in developing an attitude of humility, the very purpose of putting leavening out of our lives this past week. Christ's sacrifice should give us all an overwhelming sense of humbleness as we consider this perfect man suffering and dying for sins we intentionally or inadvertently commit. How do we continue to develop humility through the coming year?

First we must ask, "What is humility?" Humility is a state of deflated pride. What causes it? To answer that question, let's look at some examples of deflated pride. One of the best examples is found in the book of Esther:

Est 6:6-13 (NKJV) So Haman came in, and the king asked him, "What shall be done for the man whom the king delights to honor?" Now Haman thought in his heart, "Whom would the king delight to honor more than me?" {7} And Haman answered the king, <"For> the man whom the king delights to honor, {8} "let a royal robe be brought which the king has worn, and a horse on which the king has ridden, which has a royal crest placed on its head. {9} "Then let this robe and horse be delivered to the hand of one of the king's most noble princes, that he may array the man whom the king delights to honor. Then parade him on horseback through the city square, and proclaim before him: 'Thus shall it be done to the man whom the king delights to honor!' " {10} Then the king said to Haman, "Hurry, take the robe and the horse, as you have suggested, and do so for Mordecai the Jew who sits within the king's gate! Leave nothing undone of all that you have spoken." {11} So Haman took the robe and the horse, arrayed Mordecai and led him on horseback through the city square, and proclaimed before him, "Thus shall it be done to the man whom the king delights to honor!" {12} Afterward Mordecai went back to the king's gate. But Haman hurried to his house, mourning and with his head covered. {13} When Haman told his wife Zeresh and all his friends everything that had happened to him, his wise men and his wife Zeresh said to him, "If Mordecai, before whom you have begun to fall, is of Jewish descent, you will not prevail against him but will surely fall before him."

Haman felt a terrific loss of pride and as we read in verse 12, he mourned, but don't think he had a hint of true Godly humility. The story is humorous and uplifting to those of us who cheer the underdog and like to see pomposity punctured, but it certainly wasn't very funny to Haman. He was totally crushed - and later on in the story, totally dead.

Another good example of deflated pride concerns King Nebuchadnezzar.

Dan 4:29-31 (NKJV) At the end of the twelve months he was walking about the royal palace of Babylon. {30} The king spoke, saying, "Is not this great Babylon, that I have built for a royal dwelling by my mighty power and for the honor of my majesty?" {31} While the word <was still> in the king's mouth, a voice fell from heaven: "King Nebuchadnezzar, to you it is spoken: the kingdom has departed from you!

King Nebuchadnezzar was probably filled with fear rather than humility, but the end result was the same. The arrogance displayed in these verses was replaced by true humility about seven years later.

David too had an encounter with a man filled with vanity. Let's read about it in 1 Samuel 17:

1 Sam 17:42-50 (NKJV) And when the Philistine looked about and saw David, he disdained him; for he was <only> a youth, ruddy and good-looking. {43} So the Philistine said to David, <"Am> I a dog, that you come to me with sticks?" And the Philistine cursed David by his gods. {44} And the Philistine said to David, "Come to me, and I will give your flesh to the birds of the air and the beasts of the field!" {45} Then David said to the Philistine, "You come to me with a sword, with a spear, and with a javelin. But I come to you in the name of the LORD of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied. {46} "This day the LORD will deliver you into my hand, and I will strike you and take your head from you. And this day I will give the carcasses of the camp of the Philistines to the birds of the air and the wild beasts of the earth, that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel. {47} "Then all this assembly shall know that the LORD does not save with sword and spear; for the battle <is> the Lord's, and He will give you into our hands." {48} So it was, when the Philistine arose and came and drew near to meet David, that David hastened and ran toward the army to meet the Philistine. {49} Then David put his hand in his bag and took out a stone; and he slung <it> and struck the Philistine in his forehead, so that the stone sank into his forehead, and he fell on his face to the earth. {50} So David prevailed over the Philistine with a sling and a stone, and struck the Philistine and killed him. But <there was> no sword in the hand of David.

The boastfulness of Goliath, who may very well have been of the Nephilim, had little time to change into humility as the stone sank into the giant's forehead.

Now let's read a scripture about the vanity of self will and greed, its miserable results, and finally the humble person's repentance for his errors:

Luke 15:11-19 (NKJV) Then He said: "A certain man had two sons. {12} "And the younger of them said to <his> father, 'Father, give me the portion of goods that falls <to me>.' So he divided to them <his> livelihood. {13} "And not many days after, the younger son gathered all together, journeyed to a far country, and there wasted his possessions with prodigal living. {14} "But when he had spent all, there arose a severe famine in that land, and he began to be in want. {15} "Then he went and joined himself to a citizen of that country, and he sent him into his fields to feed swine. {16} "And he would gladly have filled his stomach with the pods that the swine ate, and no one gave him <anything>. {17} "But when he came to himself, he said, 'How many of my father's hired servants have bread enough and to spare, and I perish with hunger! {18} 'I will arise and go to my father, and will say to him, "Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you, {19} "and I am no longer worthy to be called your son. Make me like one of your hired servants." '

Verses 18 and 19 demonstrate what our humility should be regarding sins committed against our human fathers as well as our heavenly Father.

Now let me give you some scriptures which demonstrate remedies you can use against your own vanity:

1. Act in a humble manner.

Luke 14:8-11 (NKJV) "When you are invited by anyone to a wedding feast, do not sit down in the best place, lest one more honorable than you be invited by him; {9} "and he who invited you and him come and say to you, 'Give place to this man,' and then you begin with shame to take the lowest place. {10} "But when you are invited, go and sit down in the lowest place, so that when he who invited you comes he may say to you, 'Friend, go up higher.' Then you will have glory in the presence of those who sit at the table with you. {11} "For whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted."

2. Avoid sinners and certainly don't trust them too far. Samson was an example.

Judg 16:16-21 (NKJV) And it came to pass, when she pestered him daily with her words and pressed him, <so> that his soul was vexed to death, {17} that he told her all his heart, and said to her, "No razor has ever come upon my head, for I <have been> a Nazirite to God from my mother's womb. If I am shaven, then my strength will leave me, and I shall become weak, and be like any <other> man." {18} When Delilah saw that he had told her all his heart, she sent and called for the lords of the Philistines, saying, "Come up once more, for he has told me all his heart." So the lords of the Philistines came up to her and brought the money in their hand. {19} Then she lulled him to sleep on her knees, and called for a man and had him shave off the seven locks of his head. Then she began to torment him, and his strength left him. {20} And she said, "The Philistines <are> upon you, Samson!" So he awoke from his sleep, and said, "I will go out as before, at other times, and shake myself free!" But he did not know that the LORD had departed from him. {21} Then the Philistines took him and put out his eyes, and brought him down to Gaza. They bound him with bronze fetters, and he became a grinder in the prison.

3. Obey God, not your earthly desires.

Josh 7:11-16 (NKJV) "Israel has sinned, and they have also transgressed My covenant which I commanded them. For they have even taken some of the accursed things, and have both stolen and deceived; and they have also put <it> among their own stuff. {12} "Therefore the children of Israel could not stand before their enemies, <but> turned <their> backs before their enemies, because they have become doomed to destruction. Neither will I be with you anymore, unless you destroy the accursed from among you. {13} "Get up, sanctify the people, and say, 'Sanctify yourselves for tomorrow, because thus says the LORD God of Israel: <"There is> an accursed thing in your midst, O Israel; you cannot stand before your enemies until you take away the accursed thing from among you." {14} 'In the morning therefore you shall be brought according to your tribes. And it shall be <that> the tribe which the LORD takes shall come according to families; and the family which the LORD takes shall come by households; and the household which the LORD takes shall come man by man. {15} 'Then it shall be <that> he who is taken with the accursed thing shall be burned with fire, he and all that he has, because he has transgressed the covenant of the LORD, and because he has done a disgraceful thing in Israel.' " {16} So Joshua rose early in the morning and brought Israel by their tribes, and the tribe of Judah was taken.

4. Avoid self-sufficiency

Luke 22:31-34 (NKJV) And the Lord said, "Simon, Simon! Indeed, Satan has asked for you, that he may sift <you> as wheat. {32} "But I have prayed for you, that your faith should not fail; and when you have returned to <Me>, strengthen your brethren." {33} But he said to Him, "Lord, I am ready to go with You, both to prison and to death." {34} Then He said, "I tell you, Peter, the rooster shall not crow this day before you will deny three times that you know Me."

And we all know what happened after that.

5. We must rely upon God's grace, not our own strengths and abilities.

2 Cor 12:6-10 (NKJV) For though I might desire to boast, I will not be a fool; for I will speak the truth. But I refrain, lest anyone should think of me above what he sees me <to be> or hears from me. {7} And lest I should be exalted above measure by the abundance of the revelations, a thorn in the flesh was given to me, a messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I be exalted above measure. {8} Concerning this thing I pleaded with the Lord three times that it might depart from me. {9} And He said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness." Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. {10} Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in needs, in persecutions, in distresses, for Christ's sake. For when I am weak, then I am strong.

Let's read a few more verses commanding us to be humble:

Col 3:12-13 (NKJV) Therefore, as <the> elect of God, holy and beloved, put on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering [patience]; {13} bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also <must do>.
1 Pet 5:5-7 (NKJV) Likewise you younger people, submit yourselves to <your> elders. Yes, all of <you> be submissive to one another, and be clothed with humility, for "God resists the proud, But gives grace to the humble." {6} Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time, {7} casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.
Eph 4:1-3 (NKJV) I, therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you to walk worthy of the calling with which you were called, {2} with all lowliness and gentleness, with longsuffering, bearing with one another in love, {3} endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.

Cain gave us another example:

Gen 4:7 (NKJV) "If you do well, will you not be accepted? And if you do not do well, sin lies at the door. And its desire <is> for you, but you should rule over it."

Cain was being encouraged and warned by God. He wanted Cain to change. His warning to Cain certainly applies to us. Sin's desire is to pull us down, but we can rule over sin. We must put sin out. We must go on to perfection.

I've given you a lot of scriptures today, all of them concerning growing in humility after casting off vanity or pride. I hope I've hit at least a few raw nerves. When I ask you next Passover, "how much have you grown since last Passover?", will you be able to answer positively? I hope so. You've got a whole year to practice.

Sermon given by Wayne Bedwell
1 April 2013 LDUB
Copyright 2013, Wayne Bedwell

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