"Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus."
"So He got up from the table, took off His robe, wrapped a
towel around his waist, and poured water into a basin. Then He began to wash
the disciples' feet and to wipe them with the towel He had around Him." John
What a matchless picture of humility! At the very moment
when His throne was in view—angel-anthems floating in His ear—the hour come
"when He was to depart out of this world"—possessing a lofty consciousness of
His peerless dignity, that "He came from God and went to God;"
THEN "Jesus took a towel, and girded Himself, and began to wash the disciples'
feet!" All heaven was ready at that moment to cast their combined crowns at
His feet. But the High and the Lofty One inhabiting eternity is on earth "as
one that serves!" "That infinite stoop! it sinks all creature
humiliation to nothing, and renders it impossible for a creature to humble
Humility follows Him, from His unhonored birthplace to His
borrowed grave. It throws a subdued splendor over all he did. "The poor in
spirit"—the "mourner"—the "meek"—claim His first beatitudes. He was severe
only to one class—those who looked down upon others. However He is employed;
whether performing His works of miraculous power, or receiving
angel-visitants, or taking little children in His arms, He stands forth
"clothed with humility." No, this humility becomes more conspicuous as He
draws nearer glory. Before His death, He calls His disciples "Friends;"
subsequently, it is "Brethren," "Children." How sad the contrast
between the Master and His disciples! Two hours had not elapsed after He
washed their feet, when "there was a strife among those who should be the
Let the mental image of that lowly Redeemer be ever bending
over us. His example may well speak in silent impressiveness, bringing us down
from our pedestal of pride. There surely can be no labor of love too
humiliating when He stooped so low. Let us be content to take the
humblest place—not envious of the success or exaltation of another; not, "like
Diotrephes, loving pre-eminence;" but willing to be thought little of; saying
with the Baptist, with our eye on our Lord, "He must increase, but I must
How much we have cause to be humble for!—the constant
cleaving of defilement to our souls; and even what is partially good in us,
how mixed with imperfection, self-seeking, arrogance, vain-glory! A proud
Christian is a contradiction in terms. The Seraphim of old (type of the
Christian Church, and of believers) had six wings—two were for errands
of love but "with four he covered himself!" It has been
beautifully said, "You lie nearest the River of Life when you bend to
it; you cannot drink, but as you stoop." The corn of the field, as it
ripens, bows its head; so, the Christian, as he ripens in the divine life,
bends in this lowly grace. Christ speaks of His people as "lilies"—they are
"lilies of the Valley," they can only grow in the shade!
"Humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God." "Go" with
what Rutherford calls "a low sail." It is the livery of your blessed Master;
the family badge—the family likeness. "With this man will I dwell, even with
him that is humble." Yes! the humble, sanctified heart is God's
"Arm yourselves likewise with the same mind."