Humiliation and Exaltation
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Esther 6:1-14, Psalm 145:14-20
Text: Esther 6, Psalm 145:14-20
And Haman said to the king, “For the man whom the king delights to honor, let royal robes be brought, which the king has worn, and the horse that the king has ridden, and on whose head a royal crown is set.”
The Kingdom of God is upside down in the wildest ways. It’s absolutely counter-cultural and tips the scales of reason even today, more than 2000 years after Jesus walked the Earth. In God’s kingdom, the oppressed are liberated, the mighty are brought low, and the orphan is set in a family. Leaders lead best when they are humble, and Scripture tells us God opposes the proud (James 4:6).
Oftentimes, I want a bright and shiny appointment from the King. I want to be out in front, up on stage, under the lights. Sure, I want to please the Lord, but if I’m honest I also want the earthly trappings that come from leading. But, as John the Baptist understood, Christ must always increase and I must always decrease if I am to be in line with His standards of humility (John 3:30).
Haman looked to the king and wanted desperately, in all of his pride, to be cloaked like a king himself. He wanted to be like the king. So when Mordecai received the honors Haman felt like he himself deserved, it was as if someone else had been chosen as the lead in the school play! Haman is humiliated. He’s angry. He sees no point in serving the king if it doesn’t also bring glory to himself.
How often are we tempted to believe the same thing—that we are not seen by God unless we are wearing the robes of Doing Big Things or Being Important? Sometimes we want to be recognized as valuable to God in the eyes of others more than we want to be seen by God Himself.
We must be made less and God must be made more. Yet in His immense goodness, God promises that we will share in a Heavenly eternity with Him. He has forgiven us of much, and loves us much more. In God’s perfect, upside-down way, it isn’t standing tall and getting it right that makes things better or makes us important. We are forgiven when we see our sin, bow low in acknowledgement, and turn away from our old ways. It is with God that we are humbled but not humiliated, brought low but not crushed.
Let’s seek to be like our King, not to be seen by others but simply to have a heart like His.