Recently, on WeChat "Morning Prayer", Pastor Zhang Zhongqiu preached the seventh lecture in the series, "Victory in the Workplace". This time he shared about the Lord Jesus who was a perfect man and also perfect God. He came to us in the flesh and was our benchmark and role model. We learned from his life and work to become a humble person. The pastor shared the following thoughts on him.
He made himself nothing.
In theology, the Lord Jesus Christ had three positions: prophet, priest, and king, and two states: an elevated state and a humble state. In the Trinity, God's plan of redemption, the Lord Jesus willingly laid down the glory of heaven, came to the earth, humbled himself to become flesh, and was born in the manger.
“Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage; rather, he made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness.”(Philippians 2: 6-7)
Jesus was innate, we are nothing. He had the same life as God and was an eternal being. What we have is not intrinsic, but God awarded it to us and we own it temporarily. Sometimes we can’t be humble because we think we are capable and talented.
The Lord Jesus is God, but he was willing to obey the Father's arrangement in the plan of salvation and came to the earth to be a human being. He humbled himself and put down what he had to be a man.
We have nothing to be proud of regarding our temporary possessions. How can we be humble? We should recognize our own nature, that we are nothing and what we have is what God has given to us. We are managers, not masters, and manage gifts, talents, and money from God.
Sovereignty is with God and obedience comes from the heart.
True humility is knowing that you have nothing and all is from God. So we should submit to God's sovereignty, which reflects our inner life. It is not polite and said hello when seeing other people. It was spiritual qualities. Those who were externally polite were often not internally humble because they thought they were great and had qualities. We should think of ourselves as nothing, humble ourselves and obey with an attitude that is the same as that of Jesus Christ.
Accept God’s plan for our lives and rely on the Holy Spirit.
Humility is to respect the sovereignty of God, to lay down what we want, and to obey God and his leadership in our lives. Today, we receive from God our position in the workplace, in the church, in the family, and we should work hard for God.
You said in your heart, “I will ascend to the heavens; I will raise my throne above the stars of God; I will sit enthroned on the mount of assembly, on the utmost heights of Mount Zaphon. I will ascend above the tops of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High.” (Isaiah 14:13-14)
There are five “I will's”. The most fundamental characteristic of pride was to be opposed to God, not to accomplish God's will, but to achieve our own ideas. True humility is to respect God and accept His arrangement; to do not what I was going to do, but what God wants me to do.
The miraculous signs performed by the Lord Jesus were performed entirely by the power of the Holy Spirit while Jesus was a man. The Lord Jesus lived on earth not for himself, but to do God's will.
If we are not humble, we will not experience the power of the Holy Spirit.
“And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to death—even death on a cross! “(Philippians 2:8)
The Lord Jesus Christ showed his humility by being obedient and was obedient even to death. When we obey God, we will also obey other people. In the workplace, the leader’s ability might not be as strong as yours, but we should be humble and obey. Facing the leader’s excessive demands, we also should obey and gratefully accept it from God.
We should humbly cooperate with colleagues. In humility, we consider others better than ourselves. Out of humility, I accept that this person is stronger than me. If I have one bag of gold, I am grateful that another has two bags of gold and don’t envy him. This is humility. It is impossible to establish a good relationship with others if you don’t have a humble life. Only when we are united, can we get good results in the workplace.
Of course, in the workplace, there are some sinful things we cannot do, because we as Christians, we have principles and a bottom line. We should be as innocent as doves, but also as shrewd as snakes, having heavenly wisdom.
"It is normal to have conflicts. The problem is how we resolve them with Christ's heart and Christ's life and establish a united relationship," the pastor said.
How can we be obedient? The pastor shared something illuminating. We can read the scriptures in reverse. Jesus was obedient and died on the cross. First, we are crucified with the Lord, die on the cross, and then become obedient. The stubborn and rebellious one is crucified with the Lord and then is able to obey and become like Christ.
Rise by the Lord
“Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name,” (Philippians 2:9)
When the Lord Jesus was on the cross, he was humble and took the very nature of a servant. But God raised him up, he sat on the right hand of God, and later became Lord of Lords and King of Kings. We see that God exalted him. God rules and he can exalt you, you cannot lift up yourself. We must remember this spiritual principle today. Wait for God quietly. If God raises you up, you should do well in this high position, being neither too proud nor pushy.
Do well what God has given you and give glory to God. Don’t steal God’s glory, build your own Tower of Babel, nor let others magnify your name. If God elevates you, you will also be responsible for serving many people and showing God’s love and blessings. You must honor God’s name through your work just like Joseph.