The hero of Christmas is Jesus. We learn the humility of Jesus through the birth of Jesus. The first Adam was prideful. The root of the original sin is in pride. The pride of a man desiring to be like God made him eat the fruit of good and evil. On the other hand, Jesus, who came as the last Adam, is the humble Lord. Although Jesus is the very nature of God, He did not consider equality with God, and made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant. (Philippians 2:6-7) The beauty of Jesus reaches the climax in His humble character.
The humility of Jesus is in emptying himself. Paul sings that Jesus took the very nature of God by "making himself nothing." (Phil. 2:7). Jesus' emptiness is also "laying down.' He has emptied himself by laying down His fame, rights, interests, and desires. He emptied His desires to be treated and to be served by people. Jesus always thought of the will of Heavenly Father. Jesus denied Himself and bore the cross. He lived not for his own glory but for the glory of the Heavenly Father. We can learn the secret of fullness through the emptiness of Jesus. There must be emptiness to be filled, and emptiness to be fulfilled. Jesus first emptied to be filled, and He was full of grace and truth through emptiness.
The humility of Jesus is that of humbling himself. Paul says that Jesus "humbled himself" (Phil 2:8) by being becoming obedient to death. The devil took Jesus to a high place. He made Jesus grasp the mind of pride. Pride is a desire to go to high place. Humility, on the other hand, is a mind to lower oneself. Jesus' life was a life that kept humbling himself. Jesus came down from heaven to a manger. He went down from the manger to the cross. He has descended from the cross to the grave. Through the humility of Jesus, we can learn the secret of peace. Entering in a low position is the safest. Entering in a low position will bring peace. The secret of peace is contained in lowering. Jesus did not come to a low place to be in high place. But the humble Jesus was exalted by the Heavenly Father. When Jesus was at a low place, God exalted Him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name. (Phil. 2:9) The principle of the kingdom of God is full of paradoxes.
Jesus' humility is that of coming as a little one. Jesus, who created the heavens and the earth, was born as a little child. The great Jesus, whom the heavens and the whole universe cannot contain, came in the body of a little child. Jesus compared the mystery of heaven to a mustard seed. He said that the mustard seed is the smallest, but when it is planted, it will grow and become a tree so that the birds of the air come and nest in its branches. (Matt. 13:31-32) The world despises little things and neglects little ones, but God considers little ones precious. He considers little ones more precious than every creature under heaven. God holds tremendous potential in the little things. Those who believe in Jesus must look at the world with God's worldview. We must look at everything with a sense of considering little things precious. Those who can see thousands of trees in a little seed, those who can see a huge forest in a little seed are those with God's view.
Jesus' humility is that of coming as poor. Jesus is the Creator of all things. He is the owner of all things. He also has all authority in heaven and on earth. But Jesus was born in a poor stable. He grew up in a poor carpenter's home. The reason that Jesus came as a poor man was to make us rich (2 Cor 8: 9). Jesus came in order to preach the gospel to the poor (Luk 4:18). Jesus has mercy on the poor. He takes care of the poor. He wants to make the poor rich. Above all, He wants to enrich us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly realms (Eph 1:3). He wants us to be rich with God's grace and love.
Jesus' beauty and glory is in His humble character. God hates the proud. God opposes the proud. God keeps the proud far away. On the other hand, God gives grace to the humble. He raises the humble. God always walks with the humble. Let us give glory to Jesus who emptied himself for us, humbled himself, and came as a little one on this earth. Let us give thanks to Jesus who became poor for our sake to make us rich. May the peace, grace, and blessings of Jesus be filled in your household as we celebrate Christmas.
Reverend Joshua Choon-Min Kang is the senior pastor of New Life Vision Church, located in Los Angeles. This is one of the weekly letters he writes to his congregation. For the original, visit www.nlvc.org.