Humility is submitting to the will of God when you do not feel like it; especially when it hurts your pride or the desires of your mind and body: the pride of life, the lusts of the flesh and the lusts of the eyes (1 Jn. 2.16).
No man born of woman is naturally humble: we are all intrinsically proud because of the satanic, human sin nature in our souls: will, mind and emotions and bodies that we inherited from Satan through Adam’s sin:
Romans 5:12 MKJV: Therefore, even as through one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin, and so death passed on all men inasmuch as all sinned:
Psalms 51:5 NIV: Surely I was sinful at birth, sinful from the time my mother conceived me.
The carnal mind: the mind that still has the human sin-nature dominating it is in enmity against God and so not subject to God’s law; it is intrinsically rebellious to God’s Word.
Romans 8:6-7 GNB to be controlled by human nature results in death; to be controlled by the Spirit results in life and peace. (7) And so people become enemies of God when they are controlled by their human nature; for they do not obey God’s law, and in fact they cannot obey it.
So, to be humble requires that you release the divine nature from your spirit into your mind: by the blood (Heb. 13.20-12), the Word (1 Jn. 2.5, Jn. 6.63) and the power of the Holy Spirit (1 Jn. 4.12-13) on a consistent basis through prayer and walking in the Spirit like the Lord Jesus did as a daily habit.
Hebrews 5:7-8 NIV: During the days of Jesus’ life on earth, he offered up prayers and petitions with loud cries and tears to the one who could save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverent submission. (8) Although he was a son, he learned obedience from what he suffered
Philippians 2:8 ESV: and being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.
Humility is the key to the grace of God: the more humble we are the greater the measure of the grace and life of God that God releases to us, which in turn determines the degree of our victory and success in both divine and human endeavours.
1 Peter 5:5-6 AMP: Likewise, you who are younger and of lesser rank, be subject to the elders (the ministers and spiritual guides of the church)–[giving them due respect and yielding to their counsel]. Clothe (apron) yourselves, all of you, with humility [as the garb of a servant, so that its covering cannot possibly be stripped from you, with freedom from pride and arrogance] toward one another. For God sets Himself against the proud (the insolent, the overbearing, the disdainful, the presumptuous, the boastful)–[and He opposes, frustrates, and defeats them], but gives grace (favor, blessing) to the humble. [Prov. 3:34.] (6) Therefore humble yourselves [demote, lower yourselves in your own estimation] under the mighty hand of God, that in due time He may exalt you,
1 Peter 3:7 ESV: Likewise, husbands, live with your wives in an understanding way, showing honor to the woman as the weaker vessel, since they are heirs with you of the grace of life, so that your prayers may not be hindered.
We require sufficient humility to obtain sufficient grace:
2 Corinthians 12:9 ESV: But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
It is this sufficient grace that causes God’s power to be perfected in us, causing us to be strong and triumph over and in and through all tribulations:
2 Corinthians 12:10 ESV: For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.
2 Corinthians 2:14 MKJV: Now thanks be to God, who always causes us to triumph in Christ, and He revealing through us the odor of the knowledge of Him in every place.
Now, after we become strong through an initial attitude and period of humility, we must be careful not to become proud like King Uzziah:
2 Chronicles 26:3-5 ESV: (3) Uzziah was sixteen years old when he began to reign, and he reigned fifty-two years in Jerusalem. His mother’s name was Jecoliah of Jerusalem. (4) And he did what was right in the eyes of the LORD, according to all that his father Amaziah had done. (5) He set himself to seek God in the days of Zechariah, who instructed him in the fear of God, and as long as he sought the LORD, God made him prosper.
2 Chronicles 26:15-16 ESV: (15) In Jerusalem he made engines, invented by skillful men, to be on the towers and the corners, to shoot arrows and great stones. And his fame spread far, for he was marvellously helped, till he was strong. (16) But when he was strong, he grew proud, to his destruction. For he was unfaithful to the LORD his God and entered the temple of the LORD to burn incense on the altar of incense.
In our article next week, we will see how to stay humble after God through our initial attitude of humility has made us strong and prospered us.