Humble Dependence

by Lee Buford on October 25, 2012

Human pride is a dreadful thing. It puffs up, angers, covets, and makes unreasonable demands of ourselves and others. It propels us to act erroneously, make the wrong choices, and venture down destructive paths at every opportunity.

Pride does everything imaginable to convince me (and you) that everything is all about me (and you). Of course, it’s not! In reality, everything good in life manifests itself in opposition to pride and is ultimately realized and enjoyed as the result of humility.

The Lord exalts the humble (Luke 1:52), leads the humble in what is right (Psalm 25:9), and adorns the humble with salvation (Prov. 149:4). God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble (James 4:6).

Humility is the goal; pride is the enemy, and nowhere is this more evidently displayed than in regards to our salvation and ultimate standing in Christ. In the following excerpt from The Bondage of the Will, Martin Luther conveys this very truth:

First, God has promised certainly His grace to the humbled: that is, to the self-deploring and despairing. But a man cannot be thoroughly humbled, until he comes to know that his salvation is utterly beyond his own powers, counsel, endeavours, will, and works, and absolutely depending on the will, counsel, pleasure, and work of another, that is, of God only. For if, as long as he has any persuasion that he can do even the least thing himself towards his own salvation, he retain a confidence in himself and do not utterly despair in himself, so long he is not humbled before God; but he proposes to himself some place, some time, or some work, whereby he may at length attain unto salvation. But he who hesitates not to depend wholly upon the good-will of God, he totally despairs in himself, chooses nothing for himself, but waits for God to work in him; and such an one, is the nearest unto grace, that he might be saved.

Our humility and ultimate salvation rest in God, in His good pleasure, and in our reliance upon Him, for He is the author and perfector of our faith. We have nothing about which to boast. In Him, by grace, we are able to see the depravity of our own nature, sin, and desires. In Him, we are able to see the root destruction of our prideful make-up. Yet, at the same time, in Him, we see the grace and glory of the only One able to transform our hearts into humble, repentant believers.

In Him, pride is defeated. In Him, humility is possible. By His grace, each of us is nearest, that we might be saved.


{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

DIvey October 27, 2012 at 8:32 pm

Thank you brother, well spoken.  As we venture to live to His pleasure the least lack of focus will display our depravity- pride.


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