Humility over Ability is an extremely important concept. Last week we talked about our salvation in Married to Law or to Grace? This week I want to look at the story of Jesus’ baptized.
11 I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance, but He who is coming after me is mightier than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit [a]and fire.Matthew 3:11 New King James Version (NKJV)
John the Baptist
This is an excerpt from John the Baptist speaking about Jesus. John’s ministry went ahead of Jesus to prepare a way for the message about repentance and the kingdom of heaven.
Jesus baptizes with the Holy Spirit and with fire. He is the greater one.
We should walk in the footsteps of Jesus as we live our lives on this earth. Therefore, it is only natural that we should study what Jesus did before, during and after his time of ministry on this earth.
24 “A disciple is not above his teacher, nor a servant above his master. 25 It is enough for a disciple that he be like his teacher, and a servant like his master. If they have called the master of the house [a]Beelzebub, how much more will they call those of his household!Matthew 10:24-25 New King James Version (NKJV)
We are called to live up to the example that Jesus set for us on this earth. It’s not good enough to just be good. Jesus set a standard that is only achievable when we die to self and press into the vision He has for our lives.
Now we come to the first stretch of Jesus’s life that we will examine today. Verses 13-17 of Matthew chapter 3 show the equipping of Jesus for the ministry ahead of Him. This is the time of preparation.
18 Pride goeth before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall.Proverbs 16:18 King James Version (KJV)
6 Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time,1 Peter 5:6 New King James Version (NKJV)
The Bible makes it pretty clear that humility has to go before ability. Without a humble spirit God cannot use you. If you are always focused on how God is going to promote your ministry or who He is going to send to put your plans over you’ll never succeed.
What makes Jesus such an amazing example is that He was both the Son of God and the Son of Man. That means that everything He was able to do we too can do.
12 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father.John 14:12 King James Version (KJV)
You say that’s impossible! He was Jesus! How dare you bring yourself to His level!
And I would tell you this. If you have a proud spirit, you WON’T do these things, because God clearly says He resists the proud, but to those whose hearts are stayed on Him all things are possible to those who believe.
Jesus – the Perfect Example
Because Jesus was all God and all Man, He is the perfect example of what we as believers should be.
13 Then Jesus came from Galilee to John at the Jordan to be baptized by him. 14 And John tried to prevent Him, saying, “I need to be baptized by You, and are You coming to me?”
15 But Jesus answered and said to him, “Permit it to be so now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.” Then he allowed Him.
16 When He had been baptized, Jesus came up immediately from the water; and behold, the heavens were opened to Him, and [a]He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting upon Him. 17 And suddenly a voice came from heaven, saying, “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.”Matthew 3:13-17 New King James Version (NKJV)
This is extremely important. If you never humble yourself, you cannot be exalted. You want to promote your? Don’t. Humble yourself as Jesus did. It isn’t about ability. Jesus had the ability. He had the word already in Him.
He didn’t have to humble Himself as He was learning about the Bible. God was requiring Him to humble Himself while having already learned. He already knew the Law. He had the ability. But Jesus needed to humble himself as well.
There is no shortcut with God. Even His own Son was placed in the same position you and I are.
From this place of humility came the power that Jesus needed to start his ministry followed directly behind by the exaltation.
Jesus didn’t go into the wilderness, get tempted, resist the temptation, and then receive the Holy Spirit. Why? Because it is impossible to resist the temptation without the help of the spirit.
So many times Christians receive Jesus into their lives but they don’t tap into the fullness of the power of God. They end up getting their brains beat out by the devil because they don’t know what power resides in them because of the Holy Spirit.