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Journal Entry - An Exhortation To Humility: The Prime Trait Of The Spiritual Man.

  1. I. Paul the Apostle saith, "Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem the other better than himself. Look not every man to his own things, but every man also to the things of others." It is true that God would have all men to live humble in the sight of all others without pretense. For the law saith, "Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself," which law is the law of love and humility that shall fulfill the tenderness of the love of God to all men if so obeyed sincerely; for the love of God is without offense to those who esteem another higher than himself. Therefore, we ought to be holy in all manner of conduct toward our neighbor, for we know with certainty that our neighbor, whether just or unjust, looketh upon us as the example of our Lord, whose name we confess and live by. We should strive, therefore, with all purpose of heart to avoid fulfilling the scripture which saith, "For the name of God is blasphemed among the Gentiles through you, as it is written," (though they be perhaps Gentiles in spirit), in giving to them provocation to curse the Lord of glory on behalf of an evil conduct; but rather, with singleness of heart and equipped with the mercies of God, present to them a pure and undefiled religion, separated and peculiar, if so be that they may see thy good works and thereby glorify God.

    II. It is convenient for the spiritual man to abase himself in order that he might better avoid the vanities of pride and confidences in the flesh; yea, it is profitable for him to weep over his faults daily, praying to the Lord for forgiveness and for strength of repentance. For he that doth not walk daily to die of himself that he may obey that which saith, "He must increase, but I must decrease," swiftly loseth his strength in the Lord, and he falleth to divers temptations. Therefore that man hath become useless in service as the salt that hath lost his savour, unable to salt the world around him, becoming "thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men." Except that man repent, such shall his life be. See now that it is expedient that thou preventest thyself from this condition by way of humility, having abased thyself in the sight of God, for "God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace to the humble." And to esteem God the highest, and every man greater than thyself, is to place thyself at the foot of the Lord for service to all. Therefore, true greatness cometh by way of serving every other man in accordance to the will of God through the humble example of Christ our Savior, who came not to be served, but to serve, giving his life "a ransom for many." For one saith in a particular place, not from scripture, "If thou hast any good, believe that others have more, and so thou mayest preserve thy humility. It is no harm to thee if thou place thyself below all others; but it is great harm if thou place thyself above even one. Peace is ever with the humble man, but in the heart of the proud there is envy and continual wrath.”

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