(The Abundant Life Series – Batch 1)
It is always good to remain humble, to remember your humble little start and to be mindful of your humble little finish.
You come into this world as a vulnerable babe (because that’s the way that God would have it), completely dependent on others to bathe you, wash you, feed you and take care of you. If time permits (because that’s the way that God would have it), you will leave as a frail old man or woman with dimming sight and failing strength, dependent on those around you to take care of you.
Really, what is there to be puffed up and prideful about? There is no hierarchy, class structure, intellect or influence in the grave.
The words that Job uttered in Job 1:21 should be mankind’s guide throughout life: “Naked came I into my mother’s womb and naked shall I return thither.”
Indeed, when David considered how frail and pathetic we really were when compared to the MAJESTY of almighty God, he told God: “When I consider thy heavens, the work of thy fingers, the moon and the stars, which thou hast ordained, what is man that thou art mindful of him?” (Psalm 8:3-4)
Later on, David answers his own question with:
- “The Lord is merciful and gracious, slow to anger and plenteous in mercy…Like as a father pitieth his children, so the Lord pitieth them that fear him. For he knoweth our frame; he remembereth that we are dust. As for man, his days are as grass: as a flower of the field, so he flourisheth. For the wind passeth over it and it is GONE; and the place thereof shall know it no more.” (Psalm 103:8, 13-16)
We would also do well to be mindful of Solomon’s summations (the wisest man that ever lived) when he contemplated on life. After giving it much thought and deliberation, he concluded:
- 1 – “The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun. Is there anything whereof it may be said, See, this is new? it hath been already of old time, which was before us. There is no remembrance of former things; neither shall there be any remembrance of things that are to come with those that shall come after.” (Ecclesiastes 1: 9-11)
- 2 – “Vanity of vanities; all is vanity…One generation passeth away and another generation cometh: but the earth abideth for ever.” (Ecclesiastes 1:2,4)
- 3 – “Then I looked on all the works that my hands had wrought and on the labour that I had laboured to do: and behold, ALL was vanity and vexation of spirit and there was no profit under the sun…Yea, I hated all my labour which I had taken under the sun: because I should leave it unto the man that shall be after me. And who knoweth whether he shall be a wise man or a fool? yet he shall have rule over all my labour wherein I have laboured..This is also vanity” (Ecclesiastes 2:11,18)
- 4 – “To every thing there is a season and a time to every purpose under the heaven: A time to be born and a time to die…” (Ecclesiastes 3:1-2)
- 5 – “I said in mine heart concerning the estate of the sons of men, that God might manifest them and that they might see that they themselves are beasts. For that which befalleth the sons of men befalleth beasts; even one thing befalleth them: as the one dieth, so dieth the other; yea, they have all one breath; so that a man hath NO PREEMINENCE above a beast: for ALL is vanity. ALL go unto one place; ALL are of the dust and ALL turn to dust again.” (Ecclesiastes 3:8-20)
Of the brevity of mankind’s earthly existence, in Psalm 90:3-7,9-10, Moses said to the Lord:
- “Thou turnest man to destruction; and sayest, Return, ye children of men. For a thousand years in thy sight are but as yesterday when it is past, and as a watch in the night. Thou carriest them away as with a flood; they are as a sleep: in the morning they are like grass which groweth up. In the morning it flourisheth, and groweth up; in the evening it is cut down, and withereth. For we are consumed by thine anger, and by thy wrath are we troubled…For all our days are passed away in thy wrath: we spend our years as a tale that is told. The days of our years are threescore years and ten; and if by reason of strength they be fourscore years, yet is their strength labour and sorrow; for it is soon cut off, and we fly away.”
Of the wicked, proud and influential man who lives as he pleases as a god unto himself while alive here on earth, Job 20:4-9 states of his end:
- “Knowest thou not this of old, since man was placed upon earth, That the triumphing of the wicked is short, and the joy of the hypocrite but for a moment? Though his excellency mount up to the heavens, and his head reach unto the clouds; YET he shall perish for ever like his own dung: they which have seen him shall say, Where is he? He shall fly away as a dream, and shall not be found: yea, he shall be chased away as a vision of the night. The eye also which saw him shall see him no more; neither shall his place any more behold him.”
Micah the prophet defined mankind’s purpose perfectly, purpose being not what we craft or desire for ourselves but what God has placed us here on this earth to do and to become. Of God’s expectations for you and for me, he said: “He hath shown thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the Lord require of thee but to DO JUSTLY and to LOVE MERCY and to WALK HUMBLY with thy God?”
If you never learn HUMILITY, you have learned nothing. If you go through all of life and did not practise JUSTICE (doing what is right) and MERCY (showing others compassion, forgiveness and kindness), then in the eyes of God, your life was a waste. You have achieved NOTHING.
We have gone so far off course as a society, that it breaks God’s heart. While he is a God of mercy, he is also a God of JUSTICE so he WILL pronounce judgment in his own time.
Lord help us all.
FOOD FOR THOUGHT
(Written on 6th August, 2016, added to thereafter)
When you realize and truly contemplate on the fact that you have been GRACED by God to be alive, to continue living (although worthy of death), that he woke you up this morning, you having no ability to do so for yourself, that he GRACED you with the ability to breathe and made his air full of oxygen available to you, GRACED you to see, to hear, to walk and to talk, to have something to eat and a roof over your head, to have your faculties about you, to have been kept and protected and preserved up to this point and basically GRACED you to obtain and benefit from everything good that you have and that has come into your life thus far, like a job, a loved one that is a blessing and the talents and gifts that you have, GRACED you with time to reflect and time to repent, to seek God’s forgiveness and to get your heart right with Him (when others were removed from the scene), when you consider, that he could remove it all in a moment but for his hand of GRACE upon you, it is enough to make you sober, to destroy your pride and to make you tremble in fear of God and in humility.
(Addendum written on 8th June, 2021)
Dear Reader, if you found the above Article to be informative, interesting, edifying or beneficial, you may also be interested in reading the following under the ‘Bible-Believing Daughters’ Page:
- Note 32 – ‘Look At What ‘I’ Have Done!
- Note 166 – ‘Humility, Intellectualism and the Power of God’