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Pearls of Grace - January 23

Published: Jan 23, 2022

January 23

Higher Than I

"…After me comes a Man who has a higher rank than I, for He existed before me."

John 1:30

The true victor will bear the scars without wearing the crown and the servant of God will render unceasing labor with no want of gain. His heart seeks no reward upon the earth but only for the victor’s wreath that fades not, that will be placed upon his brow in the ceremony of eternity. "The beginning of greatness is to be little, the increase of greatness is to be less, and the perfection of greatness is to be nothing" D.L. Moody. The glory of the master is not to be obscured by the glory of the servant. We are not distinguished by the honor bestowed upon us by the hand of man, the hand of God distinguishes us long before the honor is given. Charles Cowman said once, "There is no limit to what God can do with a man, provided he does not touch the glory."

No jewel will shine more brightly in the crown of God’s children than that of humility. Humility will never tarnish the service given to God and it will never overshadow His beauty and glory with sensationalism nor mix with worldly leaven; it will give no recognition to the applause of man. The mark of true greatness adorns the brow of the humble. John the Baptist cried; "He must increase, but I must decrease" (John 3:30). Jesus was born in the humility of a lowly stable, He walked upon the earth in humility having no home and owning nothing. He died clothed in the humility of shame and nakedness, beaten beyond recognition and nailed to a tree on a hill called Golgotha. Jesus was the epitome of humility, although He existed in the form of God, He did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped but He humbled Himself taking the form of a bondservant, and being made in the likeness of men he became obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross (Philippians 2:6-8).

If Christ, who had the higher rank, had this attitude how much more should we who are lower in rank than He? Satan offers a crown without a cross and position without persecution. In the end he will be found with nothing to give and nothing to gain; stripped away by his own pride and hunger for power to sit upon the very throne of God; a rank that was never afforded to him and is not his for the taking. The rank of God belongs to Him and Him alone. To have any other attitude is to be but a common thief robbing the treasury of God for personal gain. May we never infringe upon the boundaries of God’s glory nor rob Him of the honor due Him.

You alone are worthy, oh Lord, to receive glory and honor forever amen.

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Originally published Sunday, 23 January 2022.