What Sayest Thou of Thyself?
Bro. Mike Miller
John 1:22 - Then said they unto him, Who art thou? that we may give an answer to them that sent us. What sayest thou of thyself?
There is much confusion about our attitude toward ourselves after we are saved. Some teach and believe that we are to look upon ourselves as vile and filthy. They think it is a mark of great spirituality to abase oneself and pretend to be as low as possible. They go far overboard in imagining that they are worthless to God and that God counts their works as "filthy rags." Imagine a fathe giving his son some task to do and then telling him that no matter how well he does the job he intends to reject it and belittle him for it. What kind of incentive would he have to do a good job?
Others believe they have arrived at perfect holiness and it is their job to find and point out what is lacking in others. These are the type who see no problem with themselves and are blind to their own faults, but super-sensitive to the faults of others. It is not wrong to recognize improvement in yourself, but it is wrong to lift yourself up and exalt yourself.
John 8:54-55 - Jesus answered, If I honour myself, my honour is nothing: it is my Father that honoureth me; of whom ye say, that he is your God: Yet ye have not known him; but I know him: and if I should say, I know him not, I shall be a liar like unto you: but I know him, and keep his saying.
This was the real "original sin" when Lucifer said, "I will exalt my throne above the heavens." If we are a child of God we are to glorify God in all we do. False humility and self-abasement in a so-called Christian does not bring glory to God.
1 Corinthians 10:31 - Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God. 1 Corinthians 6:20 20For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's.
It brings no glory to God when we esteem our condition and estate to be hopeless and miserable after we are saved. Such an attitude gives no incentive or hope to the sinner, nor does it cause him to desire what we have. Where is the grace of God in such an attitude? It would seem to be a very hard slander against the grace of God to profess that He has left you in such a miserable state while you claim to be a partaker of his grace. This is what the Bible says grace does in our lives:
Titus 2:11-14 For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world; Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.
Every sinner knows that there is to be an improvement when a person gets saved. They know that God makes a difference. What a blasphemous thing when we imagine ourselves to be no different, or as some have said, even worse than before we were saved.
All our works should be designed to glorify God and not ourselves.
Matthew 5:16 - Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.
The glorying should be in what God has done for us - not what we have done for God, or for ourselves.
2 Corinthians 4:7 - But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us.
2 Corinthians 5:17-18 - Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation;
We should never lose our perspective of where we were - compared to where we are now. We should never lose sight of where we could have been by now if not for the grace of God operating in our life. We should certainly give a testimony that God has improved our life. Not that we have improved ourselves by our own efforts, but because of the grace and mercy of God we are what we are, and it is far better than what we had before! We should remember that all we have done that has made the difference in our life is that we came to Jesus.
Our attitude toward ourselves should be that of the Psalmist.
Psalm 40:2-4 - He brought me up also out of an horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and established my goings. And he hath put a new song in my mouth, even praise unto our God: many shall see it, and fear, and shall trust in the LORD.
When others see the power of God working in a life they will " fear, and shall trust in the LORD."
-- Mike Miller (12/28/2004)