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Pastor’s Desk: Humble yourselves

Posted on Tuesday, September 6, 2022 at 12:20 pm

Rev. Sean McIntyre, Centralia United Methodist Church

1 Peter 5:6

Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time.

Christianity is not a religion based on karma. In fact, in multiple places, the idea of karma is rejected in scripture (Matthew 5:45). This is because there is nothing any of us can do to earn favor from God (God offers it to us freely). God alone is good and we can only be considered good because of the life, death and resurrection of Jesus. Therefore, this passage cannot be saying that if you do good, then you will get good in return, because it is not based on our own merits. But, because of the perfect merit of Jesus, when we live like Jesus and bring the Kingdom to reality on earth, we will experience goodness. Not because of anything we have done, but because wherever the Kingdom of God is, things are simply better. And in this case, we are reminded that God’s Kingdom does not exist where there is pride. All throughout God’s Word, we are told that God exalts the humble and opposes the proud. And here, we are not just encouraged to humble ourselves, but to humble ourselves “under God’s mighty hand.” A term that is often used in scripture is “fear of the Lord.” But it is also often misused/misunderstood, but it is what Peter is trying to say here. And simply put “fer of the Lord” means reverence for or recognition of who God is and who we are in relation to God.

For the complete column, see this week’s edition of the Centralia Fireside Guard.