In case you haven’t noticed in the election season there does not seem to be a lot of humility. If there is one thing that seems to be lacking in our life together as a society and, yes even as a church, it is humility. To humble oneself is very tough and for some an impossible task. The simple old formula that defined humility was, “I am third. God is first, my neighbor is second, and I am third.” One of the greatest gifts of being a Christian is the belief that I do not have to justify myself because Jesus already justified me; I don’t have to save myself because Jesus has already saved me; I don’t have to push myself forward because Jesus has given himself for me that I may be his own. One of the greatest trials of a Christian is refraining from justifying ourselves, saving ourselves and push ourselves forward because that is what the old sinful person wants to do.
The truth is also that the in our life together, the ones who push for something usually get it and the ones that humble themselves do get squashed. The squeaky wheel does get the grease and those who push forward do get ahead, and nice guys do finish last. So what is a Christian to do? Have the same mind as Christ who humbled himself, and we can have the same mind precisely because Christ humbled himself and made himself a servant. (Philippians 2) The humiliation of Christ meant that He willingly took on the form of a servant to die.
“When Christ carried His voluntary humiliation even to the deeps of death (Phil. 2: 8), a death in which the wrath of God spent itself upon all that is man, He was acting “even as a hen gathers her chickens under her wings” (Matt. 23: 37) to turn the threatening peril away from others upon Himself, as the shepherd who lays down his life for the sheep (John 10:12). In so acting it was His wish to die for others (Mark 10:45), and the whole New Testament with consenting voice declares with grateful recognition and in manifold metaphors that He has done so.
The effect of the death of Christ consists, then, in this, that the wrath of God is thereby, by His death, turned from the others. (Rom.5:9).” Werner Elert