By: Undre Griggs, Jr.
Those who are humble are often portrayed as someone who is unsure or lacks confidence. The prideful person is seen as a go-getter and someone who gets things done. In actuality, the humble person is going to be the most effective. It is the prideful person who is wasting a considerable amount of time appeasing their ego. Have you ever met someone who found it difficult to admit they were wrong? Instead of simply acknowledging the truth and moving on, they find themselves trying to defend the indefensible.
1 Peter 5:6-7 (ESV): Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you.
On the other hand, when you are humble, you are more focused on outcome than you are on who gets credit. This is important because you have to remember all good things come from God. Throughout Scripture, God makes it clear that is important for us to acknowledge Him in all of our endeavors. To aid us in this task, God looks for the humble to elevate. The humble will not accept credit, nor do they seek praise.
Another method God utilizes to help us spot His mighty hand is to uplift the “weak”. We see this with King David, who was seen as the smallest and least threatening of his brothers. When David killed Goliath, everyone immediately knew that it could only be accomplished through the hand of God. A similar situation occurred with Joseph, when he was sold into slavery by his brothers. Joseph went from slave to second in command of the most powerful empire of that time.
Numbers 20:11-12 (ESV): And Moses lifted up his hand and struck the rock with his staff twice, and water came out abundantly, and the congregation drank, and their livestock. And the Lord said to Moses and Aaron, “Because you did not believe in me, to uphold me as holy in the eyes of the people of Israel, therefore you shall not bring this assembly into the land that I have given them.”
God knows it is human nature to give credit to what we can see and to ignore what we can’t. Moses lost his ability to enter the Promise Land because he did not speak to the rock. As a result, the Hebrews were going to give undue credit to Moses. While it may not seem like a big deal to us, it is of the highest importance to God. So important, that everything Moses did up to this point (plagues, traveling, commandments, leaving a lavish lifestyle) could not compare to the mistake of blurring the line of God and man. Consequently, the strength found in a humble person who has God on their side becomes immeasurable; and the strength found in a prideful person who is without God becomes trivial. Do not live in a manner that diminishes your works because you are blurring the line between God and man. Be humble, be gracious, and be willing to give God the glory.
By: Undre Griggs, Jr.
We all seek peace, but where do we look for it? The Bible says we will find peace in the work of righteousness.
Isaiah 32:17-18 (NKJV): "The work of righteousness will be peace, and the effect of righteousness, quietness and assurance forever." My people will abide in a peaceful habitation, in secure dwellings, and in quiet resting places.
What type of a life does a righteous person live? We can see in the above verse that they live a quiet and humble life. There is also the need for us to devote our entire life to Christ. Because of sin being introduced into the world, we are no longer able to be righteous on our own. Our flesh is weak, easily corrupted, and our transgressions separate us from God.
2 Corinthians 5:17-19 (ESV): Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come. All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation; that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation.
If we want to be righteous, we need to live a life focused on learning and spreading the word of God. When we devote our life to Christ, we will give Him all the glory for our accomplishments. Whether those achievements are at work, at home, or helping someone in need; the glory goes to God. It is because of our faith that we feel compelled to live righteously. We know that Jesus is going to come for those who love Him and keep His commandments.
1 Peter 2:5 (ESV): You yourselves like living stones are being built up as a spiritual house, to be a holy priesthood, to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.
Devoting our life to serving the Lord and understanding His word is grooming us to be holy. Our works and efforts are spiritual offerings to the Lord in an effort to give thanks for Him giving His son for our sins. That is why quietness is a trait of the righteous; they know that without Jesus’ sacrifice they would be condemned with the rest of humanity. The promise of receiving a reward on the Last Day is a blessed assurance those who live for Christ will enjoy. Be patient in all interactions, knowing the reward the righteous receive.
By: Undre Griggs, Jr.
James 5:3 (ESV): Your gold and silver have corroded, and their corrosion will be evidence against you and will eat your flesh like fire. You have laid up treasure in the last days.
The thought-provoking element about this verse is the fact that gold and silver do not actually corrode. The alloys or impure materials mixed with gold are what corrodes and are susceptible to rust. That is why rusted or corroded gold will be evidence used against us. Christians are to remain pure and unblemished from the world; so if our gold can rust, it must be impure and mixed with some tainted minerals.
Ephesians 5:27 (NKJV): that He might present her to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be holy and without blemish.
On the last day, our judgment will be based on the word of God found in the Bible.
John 12:48 (NIV): There is a judge for the one who rejects me and does not accept my words; the very words I have spoken will condemn them at the last day.
There is nothing more pure than God’s word, yet we find Christians frequently speaking where the Bible does not speak. With the best intentions we change concepts from the Bible to become less confrontational and more acceptable to the masses. In actuality, the road to destruction is the wide road that many will walk, while the narrow road is the path that leads to salvation. When we are entertaining to the masses, we are likely mixing what is pure with what is impure. Our focus should not be on the treasures of luxury found on earth, but on the treasures of righteousness found in heaven. Remember, those who store their treasures on earth will be susceptible to rust and corrosion, while those who store their treasures in heaven will remain pure and incorruptible.
Matthew 6:19-21 (NKJV): “Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal; but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
We cannot please both man and God. Every time we focus on the word of God, our treasures are being stored in heaven; every time we focus on the traditions of man, our treasures are being stored here on earth. Rusting is a slow process that happens over time – be ever vigilant and aware of where your treasures are being stored.
By: Undre Griggs, Jr.
Understanding truth is essential to being a Christian, but how do we go about investigating what truth is? To understand truth, we need to understand God, and to do that, we need to be baptized.
I Corinthians 2:13-14 (NIV): This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom but in words taught by the Spirit, expressing spiritual truths in spiritual words. The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned."
To grow properly,
We must learn the pure word of God.
1 Peter 2:2 (ESV): Like newborn infants, long for the pure spiritual milk, that by it you may grow up into salvation
John 17:17 (ESV): Sanctify them in the truth; your word is truth.
We must devote our time and effort to maturing in the faith by constantly studying and applying the lessons from the Bible.
Hebrews 5:14 (ESV): But solid food is for the mature, for those who have their powers of discernment trained by constant practice to distinguish good from evil.
We are required to remain humble in all interactions and give the glory to God.
Psalms 25:9 (NIV): "He guides the humble in what is right and teaches them His way."
It is fundamental that we pray to God asking for the wisdom to recognize His truth.
James 1:5 (NIV): If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.
Rightly discerning the truth is an expectation of God for us to show ourselves approved ( 2 Timothy 2:15). It will not always be easy, but it is necessary and it does lead to a better life. There is nothing worse than not knowing enough to make a wise decision. We will find ourselves blowing to and fro in the wind because we do not have a foundation. We will believe whatever sounds appealing at time and that will surely put us on the wide road to destruction. Let us never stop growing in truth.
By: Undre Griggs, Jr.
Imitation is the highest form of flattery and God wants us to imitate Him. Similar to the relationship of parent/child, we teach our children how to mature physically while God is teaching us how to mature spiritually. Also in like fashion, it our responsibility as children of God to correctly mimic the example provided. The best way for any child to show love to their parent is through obedience.
Ephesians 5:1-2 (ESV): Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children. And walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.
Mimicking God is the only way to stay on the path of righteousness.
3 John 1:11 (ESV): Beloved, do not imitate evil but imitate good. Whoever does good is from God; whoever does evil has not seen God.
For a Christian to endure suffering, they will need to mimic God’s mindset.
1 Peter 4:1 (ESV): Since therefore Christ suffered in the flesh, arm yourselves with the same way of thinking, for whoever has suffered in the flesh has ceased from sin,
To understand and live holy, one needs to understand and mimic God.
Leviticus 11:45 (NIV): I am the Lord, who brought you up out of Egypt to be your God; therefore be holy, because I am holy.
Before you are baptized for the remission of sin, you are of the world and surrounded in darkness. God provides the light that leads to joy and happiness. Follow that light to salvation by mimicking the examples found in the Bible.
Ephesians 5:8-11 (NKJV): For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light (for the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness, righteousness, and truth), finding out what is acceptable to the Lord. And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather expose them.