Skip to content

August 17, 2010


Orthodoxy & Orthopraxy

(A correct response to the message on Sunday)

Each week, I will be endeavoring to write a followup blog post specifically to the members of our church. Sometimes these blog posts will include links to pertinent sermons, material that I could not fit into my sermon, or specific applications of the sermon. These posts will be the basis of our Home Group discussions.

Colossians 1:9-10 says

(9) For this cause we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to desire that ye might be filled with the knowledge of his will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; (10) That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God;

In this text, Paul identifies that there is a spiritual process of learning correct doctrine (Orthodoxy) and then applying this knowledge to our lives. (Orthopraxy)

It is my prayer that this blog will become a place where we can challenge each other, share insights, ask questions, and grow in real community.

This weeks sermon was entitled “Joy in Humilty.” Audio & Video from this weeks sermon.

This is not a subject in which I claim much expertise. It is something that we should all be pursuing in our daily Christian lives.

The following were some practical ideas for you to meditate on as you pursue humility along with me: (This list is from a friend of mine named Rory)

1. Prayer. We can’t stumble into being humble… We have to pray for it!

2. Always look to the example of Jesus and have a Jesus mindset; the Scriptures are the means here. If you are not in the Scriptures on a daily basis, you cant see how Jesus lived his humble life. Maybe a good thing in quiet times and devotions are to always be in the Gospels along with your normal bible reading. This will reinforce a constant observance of Jesus’ life and ministry and in turn show how Christ lived it out.

3. Set-up an inventory at the end of each day and simply ask yourself the question, “was I humble in mind today and did work on my humility by the Spirit and the Word?”

4. Practice humility in all contexts; Church, the home, friends, work, etc. and make it a point to do (at least) one humble thing a day in each context.

5. Memorize Phil 2:5-8. Period.

6. Constantly meditate on the Cross of Jesus Christ and the Scriptures that pertains to it.

7. Put Scripture around the house about humility; the study, the office, the bathroom, etc.

8. Ask yourself if there is affection, unity, love, and joy in your life, for these are the benchmarks of the humble believer.

The following are comments from the conclusion of my sermon that were taken from the book “Humility” by CJ Mahaney:

1. Reflect on the wonder of the cross of Christ.

There is only one thing I know that crushes me to the ground and humiliates me to the dust, and that is to look at the Son of God, and especially to contemplate the cross. Martyn Lloyd-Jones

2. Follow the truth wherever it leads. If the truth leads to you’re wrong then follow it. Don’t try and defend yourself. Follow the truth wherever it leads.

3. Invite and pursue correction and counsel. Ask people to tell you when they see sin in your life. Let them speak truth into your life and confront you of sin. And then when they speak don’t argue. Don’t talk a lot. Don’t blame shift, don’t change the subject. Don’t defend yourself and don’t shift the responsibility to someone else.

4. Learn from everyone. Even your critics and enemies have something to give you and if you are humble enough to overlook their pride, you can receive the gift they have to give you, which may be painful but it’s helpful.

5. Repent quickly and thoroughly. Don’t turn it into an enormous event. Don’t require a large number of people to get involved. Don’t force others to pin you to the mat before you give up. Just say, “I’ve sinned, I’m sorry, I’m changing, I have no excuse.

6. Seek and celebrate God’s grace at work in other Christians. God is at work in the lives of other people, seek it, encourage and nurture it. “I praise God.” “I see this in your life.” “I see what Jesus is doing in your heart.” “I see the ways in which you are growing.” Encourage and nurture that in others.

7. Cultivate a spirit of thankfulness. Thank people and thank God.And thank God for people.

8. Exalt the name of Jesus in all you do. Don’t ask, “what’s best for me?” but “what’s best for Jesus and his people?” “What will make Jesus look good because he is good?” What will exalt the name of Jesus? What will enable Jesus to be seen as glorious as he is? The right answer is always the one that makes Jesus look the best.

9. Laugh. Proud people have no sense of humor. They are so serious and they especially can’t laugh at themselves.“How dare you mock me!” Humble people can laugh and do laugh at themselves.

10. Sleep. Proud people don’t sleep well. They are worried. “How will this work out?” “What are people thinking?” “What are people saying?” “What are people doing?” “How are people perceiving me?” “How are they responding to me?” “What do they want from me?”

The book is one of my favorites and would be a good addition to your library.

False Humilty?

In 1908 the British writer G. K. Chesterton described the hijacking of the word “arrogance” to refer to conviction and “humility” to refer to doubt. Chesterton saw it coming:

What we suffer from today is humility in the wrong place. Modesty has moved from the organ of ambition. Modesty has settled upon the organ of conviction; where it was never meant to be. A man was meant to be doubtful about himself, but undoubting about the truth; this has been exactly reversed. Nowadays the part of a man that a man does assert is exactly the part he ought not to assert – himself. The part he doubts is exactly the part he ought not to doubt – the Divine Reason. . . . The new skeptic is so humble that he doubts if he can even learn. . . . There is a real humility typical of our time; but it so happens that it’s practically a more poisonous humility than the wildest prostrations of the ascetic. . . . The old humility made a man doubtful about his efforts, which might make him work harder. But the new humility makes a man doubtful about his aims, which makes him stop working altogether. . . . We are on the road to producing a race of man too mentally modest to believe in the multiplication table.
(Orthodoxy [Garden City, NY: Doubleday and Co., 1957], pp. 31-32)

John Piper said, “The most common response to this conviction is that Christians are arrogant. Modern-day humility would never cry, “Fire!” since the smoke might be vapor from the clothes drier.” If humility is not compliance with the relativism of sophomoric skepticism, what is it? This is important, since the Bible says, “God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble” (1 Peter 5:5), and “Everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted” (Luke 14:11). God has told us at least five things about humility.

Read more from Orthodoxy & Orthopraxy
1 Comment

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. Tweets that mention Orthodoxy & Orthopraxy | Clayton Reed --

Comments are closed.