Posts Tagged ‘others first’
“Nobody should seek his own good, but the good of others.” 1 Corinthians 10:24
Aren’t Bible verses about humility and sacrifice fun? This verse just sounds so wrong doesn’t it? Of course I need to seek my own good. How else will I survive? This is a Bible verse that really separates the men from the boys, so to speak. All of us would like to consider ourselves good people, people who have other’s best interests at heart. But how many of us actively think about how to seek someone else’s good above our own? I confess that I rarely do. I don’t have this type of humility. I hope, by the grace of God, that I’ll one day have it. But I don’t know if I ever will.
My own human nature is powerful. It wants what it wants, and it wants quite a bit. I have so many ambitions, so many things that I want to find in life. And many of them are good things, things that I don’t just want to abandon so that I can actively seek the good of others. But luckily, I don’t think the verse is telling us to abandon all of our hopes and desires and instead to wholeheartedly just seek the good of others. But it definitely is telling us that we need to live differently. Most of us live above our means. We spend just as much or more money than we make, and spend almost all of our time trying to pay back the bills we incur. Most of us don’t even have the opportunity to think about someone else’s good because we’ve so entrapped ourselves in debt and liabilities. For those of us that this is true of, maybe we ought to really make a concerted effort to spend less on ourselves and to think of ways that we might use our time and our money in ways that benefit other people. Just a thought.
“Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others as better than yourselves.” Philippians 2:3
Now this is definitely one of the toughest Bible verses about humility to read. I don’t think anyone enjoys reading this verse. I can’t think of any command that’s more difficult to accomplish than this one. Isn’t it so contrary to human nature, so contrary to everything our thoughts and emotions tell us? From childhood we grow up striving to fulfill our own desires, searching for happiness and pleasure, and not much thinking about anyone else in our lives. But God commands the opposite. He tells us that other people should actually be more important to us than achieving our own happiness and desires. That’s just plain tough.
But that’s the mandate that Jesus gives us. And He has the right to demand that from us. After all, He himself gave up everything and came down to Earth to give up His own life in order that we might come to have a relationship with Him and God the father. So when He says that we ought to consider others as better than ourselves, what He’s really commanding is that we become more like Him, because that’s exactly what He did. So when you take a look at it from that perspective, it becomes clear that if any of us desires to be more like Christ, we need to have the kind of humility that Jesus had. And that kind of humility isn’t something that comes easily. It’s probably the hardest thing we’ll ever work for. But the good news is that we don’t have to do it alone. If anyone truly desires to have the kind of humility that Jesus had and wants to consider others as better than themselves, then God is eager to give that person a helping hand. God loves to give us humility and won’t hesitate to lend a hand.