What Does This Counsel Mean?

“God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.” Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. – James 4:6,7

“Submit yourselves unto God.” He is your God, your Father, your friend- yield yourselves to Him. What does this counsel mean? It means exercise humility. We do well to interpret a text by its connection: now the connection here is “God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble,” and therefore the submission here meant must include humility, even if it be not the chief thing intended. Brothers and sisters, let us take our right place before God. And what is that? Is it the highest seat in the synagogue? Is it the place of those who thank God that they are not as other men are? I scarcely need reply, you who are the children of God will not dream of occupying such a position. If by reason of temporary foolishness you ever boast, I am sure my dear friends, when you think over it in the watches of the night you are very much ashamed of yourselves and would be glad to eat your own words. A pardoned sinner boasting! A debtor to sovereign grace extolling himself! It is horrible. Nothing can be more out of place than boasting upon the lips of a child of God…Is it not one of the fundamental truths of our faith that we are saved by grace? And what says the apostle? “Where is boasting then? It is excluded.” The word “excluded” means shut out. Boasting comes to the door, it knocks, it pleads for admission, but it is excluded. Possibly through our unwatchfulness it gains a momentary entrance, but as soon as ever the grace of God within us ascertains that the intruder is within our gates it ejects him, shuts the door in his face, and bars him out, and in answer to the question “Where is boasting then?” free grace replies, “It is excluded, by the law of grace.” If all the good we have has been given to us freely by divine favor, in what can we glory? ~ C.H. Spurgeon


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