A Lesson on Humility Luke 18:9–14
A Lesson on Humility Luke 18:9–14 INTRO: Welcome; Wave Greeting; Series - Teachings of Jesus Background: Jesus is speaking to a crowd of Tax collectors and Sinners. Luke 15 says were coming to hear His teachings. Jesus’ teaching is for EVERYBODY. ILLUS: Pastor. Jesus crafts a parable using familiar CHARACTERS: Pharisee and Tax Collector. Pharisee = developed a tradition of strict interpretation of the Mosaic law; developed an extensive set of oral extensions of the law designed to maintain religious identity and purity. Not the Bad Guys. Tax Collector = responsible for collecting taxes and tolls on behalf of the Roman government. Profited by demanding a higher tax from the people. The Bad Guys. Jesus teaches that nobody is better than anyone else. Especially regarding righteousness. THE CHARACTER OF THE PHARISEE 11 ‘God, I thank you that I am not like (live like) other people—robbers, evildoers, adulterers— or even like this tax collector. 12 I fast twice a week and give a tenth of all I get.’ SELF RIGHTEOUS. Focus on “I”; Condescends Others – robbers, evildoers, adulterers...even those in the congregation: THIS tax guy. The Comparison of righteous acts and/or obedience to the law is Basically saying, “I’m better than You.”
What is the basis of “I’m better than you?” Illusory Superiority = cognitive bias processing thoughts) where a person overestimates their own qualities and abilities causing a POSITIVE ILLUSION of themself. Hubris Hypothesis = personality trait that involves excessive pride and self-importance leading to a condescending attitude toward others. ILLUS: “I am a better friend than others” with “I am a good friend.” The comparative statement with others; instead of simply stating you’re a good friend. INSECURITY = people who present themselves as EXPERTS on CHURCH Life. They know everything about God; the Bible; They bully others. They use spiritual terminology to instill fear and command respect to those who listen to them. I John 4:1 – do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world. Why Test every Spirit? To prevent your mind from believing that you are LESS THAN in the eyes of God. The Character of the PHARISEES was to infiltrate the mind with false teachings of a godly character. Protect your Mind. Watch who you listen to, a condition of (error in
THE CHARACTER OF THE TAX COLLECTOR - But the tax collector stood at a distance. He would not even look up to heaven, but beat his breast and said, ‘God, have mercy on me, a sinner.’ HUMILITY – standing at a distance; won’t look up to heaven. Beat his breast = Express sadness or guilt. God, Have mercy on me, a sinner – “I know who I really am.” Humble people have an accurate view of themselves. They Put Others First – ILLUS: “First in line.” They Speak Their Minds – Eph 4:14-15 - 14 we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of people in their deceitful scheming. 15 Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of Him who is the head, that is, Christ. Not afraid to speak their minds because they speak for Christ...in Love as He did. They Have An Abundance Mentality – doesn’t desire a "win" at another person's "loss." There's plenty of blessings to go around. Luke 15 – Great rejoicing in heaven...
THE CHARACTER OF CHRIST - 14 “I tell you that this man, rather than the other, went home justified before God. For all those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.” Why? Because he humbled himself before the Lord. What does it mean to humble yourself before the Lord? Here are a few tips. Routinely confess your sin to God (Luke 18:9-14). All of us sin. Examine yourself, your heart and behaviors Weekly; daily. Take wrong patiently (1 Peter 3:9-17) 9 Do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult. On the contrary, repay evil with blessing, 14 But even if you should suffer for what is right, you are blessed. Act with gentleness and respect, 16 keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander. When something is unjust we want to react and rectify it. However, patiently demonstrates godly character. Choose to serve others (Matthew 23:11). Greatest is the servant. When we serve others, we are serving God’s purposes in their lives. Be quick to forgive (Matthew 18:21-35). Forgiveness is possibly one of the greatest acts of humility we can do. Forgiveness = acknowledge a wrong has been done us; AND to release our right of repayment for the wrong.
CLOSE: James 4:10 – Humble yourself and He will lift you up. It’s not easy to humble yourself...but it is freeing. The Character of the Pharisee (Self Righteous) The Character of the Tax Collector (Humility). The lesson has been presented. Which Character would you prefer to be?