“But when you are bidden, go and sit down in the lowest room, that when he that bid you comes, he may say unto you, ‘Friend, go up higher.’ Then shall you have worship in the presence of them that sit at meat with you—for whosoever exalts himself shall be abased. And he that humbles himself shall be exalted.”
When we know our “place” in life, we’ll also know His.
Have you ever wondered why you were born where you were, to the parents who brought you into this world, why your skin’s the color it is, etc.? It’s simply because of God’s sovereign will. And, today’s Manna is a lesson in humility and one we so desperately need in this day of pride, pomp and circumstance.
As He so often did, the Lord Jesus spoke in a parable about the perils of ambition and self-promotion. Dr. Luke tells us that he noticed how some of the Pharisees listening to Him scrambled to get the most prominent seats in the room (v.7). This wasn’t because they were so enthralled with His teachings; it’s because they loved the praise of men and wanted to be noticed.
So, His all-seeing Eye used an earthly event to convey a Heavenly truth.
And, He still does the same thing today; we simply need to have spiritual eyes to look for the burning bushes He places in our path.
By couching His parable in the context of a marriage feast, His listeners could readily picture the occasion. Weddings were festive events where the wine and the food were plentiful. Laughter and dancing were the norm and the guests would usually wear their best “Sunday-go-to-meeting” clothes.
Yet, inevitably there’d be some guest—possibly some distant cousin or presuming acquaintance—who’d try to upstage the newlyweds by garnering glory for himself. He’d talk loud and long, trying to impress folks with his wit and wisdom. And, he’d rush to get the best seat in the house (closest to the host) so others would think he was “somebody come.”
But, self-promotion or self-exaltation are quite dangerous.
And, those who engage in them soon learn painful lessons in humiliation, not humility.
Much better is our genuinely “humbling ourselves in the sight of the Lord and letting Him lift us up” (James 4:10; I Pet. 5:6). That way we’ll have to worry about being exposed for what we really are (“poor, maimed, lame and blind”—v.13), for the Host in condescending Love will say “Friend, come sit up here close to Me” at the Marriage Feast of the Lamb and His Bride, the Church. Hallelujah!!
Always remember: “Promotion comes neither from the east nor the west nor from the south. But God is the Judge; He puts down one and sets up another” (Ps. 75:6-7). Therefore, let Him be the One to place you where He wants you—for vain is the glory of man, but eternal is the Glory of God. Amen and amen.
By Tom Smith Morning Manna Dated June 2, 2010