“. . .Yea, all of you be subject one to another and be clothed with humility—for ‘God resists the proud and gives grace to the humble.’  Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty Hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time.”

I Peter 5:5b-6

It’s a soft garment of Grace given by the Master Designer to those who know His heart.


We don’t hear much about this spiritual virtue these days in this “I’m right and you’re wrong,” proud world of ours.  Yet, if we are to truly “know Christ and the power of His Resurrection” (Phil. 3:10a), we must “humble ourselves under the mighty Hand of God;” otherwise, we’ll always find ourselves in opposition to Him.

The question, then, is “What is humility and how do we recognize it?”

The Greek word “tapeinophrosune” is used here for “humility” and basically means “humbleness of mind, self-abasing, modesty, cast down, of low estate, to rein in or curb, etc.”  Thus, it’s just the opposite of exalting one’s self or always seeking to be in the spotlight.

Interestingly, the word also means “a lowliness of mind.”

In reflecting on this, we realize this is a part of having “the mind of Christ” (Phil. 2:5), for He had “lowliness of mind” (Phil. 2:5).  This simply means we don’t “think more highly of ourselves than we ought” (Rom. 12:3)—i.e., have an exaggerated view of ourselves and our self-importance.  And, in so doing, we don’t easily get puffed up by others’ compliments or deflated by their criticisms.

We should also note that we are to be “clothed with humility.”  Thus, it’s more than one of many garments that we wear (like the many parts of the Christian Armor—Eph. 6:10-18).  Instead, humility should be our outer garment or cloak that covers all.  And, it is this same garment that prompts us to pray for others and their shortcomings instead of exposing them (I Pet. 4:8).

The Apostle Peter also includes a word of warning in the call for humility.  Citing Prov. 3:34 and Is. 57:15 he writes “for God resists (Grk. ‘antitassomai’—‘to oppose, pit one’s self against, assign or be disposed toward, etc.’) the proud and gives Grace to the humble.”  Simply put, like His dealings with Pharaoh. . .who repeatedly refused to let the Israelites go free from Egyptian slavery, but finally relented. . .so does the Heavenly Father arrange things in our life to get our attention when pride, not humility, is fueling our interaction with others.

Sadly, even then, folks (like Pharaoh) will continue “hardening their hearts” against Him.

Let such not be said of us, dear Pilgrim.  Instead, let us “submit (Grk. ‘hupotasso’—‘to subordinate, obey, subdue to, be subject to, etc.’) ourselves unto the elder (those charged with spiritual oversight over us) and also be subject one to another” (v.5a).

In so doing, our willful “humbling ourselves under the mighty Hand of God will lead to His exalting (Grk. ‘hupsoo’—‘to elevate, lift up, raise up in dignity, etc.’) us in due time.”  This may not be in men’s estimation or others’ increased approval or adulation; however, we will inwardly know the Lord is pleased with us and will bless what we do in His Name.

By Tom Smith Morning Manna Dated January 14, 2010

Get Totally FREE Sermon Outlines and

Step-by Step Guide on How You Can Further Develop It

  • Free sermon outlines where you will not have to worry about plagiarism. It’s my personal sermon outlines made for the past twelve years of experience.
  • Freedom to develop the sermon outlines to contextualize it in your own situation.
  • Freedom to use it where ever or when ever you need it.
  • Freedom to develop it and produce your own teaching materials.
  • Ste-by-step way on how you can effectively improve it and use it in your context.
  • And much much more…

You have Successfully Subscribed!

Pin It on Pinterest