by John and Ruth Greene
Do you live almost exclusively to make a good impression on others or do you live to please yourself? Both are signatures of real spiritual issues. Within the body or gathering of Messiah, selfish ambition or vain conceit brings strife and disagreement. People pleasing gives others control over you, even making some one else your god over your Heavenly Father. Spiritual agreement with the Bible, while learning to be of like Spirit and purpose through love is the focus of a disciple instead of people pleasing and selfishness. As you grow in spiritual maturity through scriptural study you learn what is true and as the Holy Spirit operates in you, you learn whether the professed beliefs in your Christian gathering or assembly line up with scripture. (Matthew 6:1-34; Philippians 2:1-11; John 14:26; “Are You Rejecting YHWH’s Holy Spirit?“; “Abiding in Trust“; “Giving to Others While Trusting in YHWH for Your Needs“)
When the body of the Messiah works together, each disciple cares for the problems and concerns of other disciples. This brings closeness and better understanding between people. Do you see this in your gathering? This is a sign of a body of people that demonstrate the love of Yahshua [Jesus], in part by putting others first. (John 13:34-35, 15:2; Acts 20:35) Masks and pretense are abandoned as the walls of sin come down. (Philippians 3:2, 4:2) In this way, the gathering of Messiah becomes unified in purpose and thinking. Each disciple reaches out to others, both in the gathering and outside, in line with the command to reach the earth with the real message of the Messiah. (Matthew 28:19-20; Mark 16:15-18; “Christianity: A Crisis in Prayer & Spirit“; “Living in the Now“)
Selfish ambition and pride destroys relationships, but humility builds up and strengthens.
“ For I say, through the favor which has been given to me, to everyone who is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he should think, but to think soberly, as Elohim has given to each a measure of belief.” – Romans 12:3, ISR98
Disciples of Messiah are saved by divine grace, having great value to Elohim. This respect to YHWH is reflected in those of like trust in Elohim [YHWH]. In the same way, disciples are to part from selfish interests while treating others with respect and courtesy. This is not an act, but evidence of real love. (Matthew 5:5-9, 12:35-37, 18:2-4, 23:11-12; Luke 6:31-35; Romans 12:9-18) Being a Christian is not about appearances. What have you witnessed where you meet with others? Do you show respect and brotherly love to your brothers and sisters in Messiah? How do you react to brothers and sisters that aren’t just like you? (Proverbs 11:2-3, 15:17, 16:8, 19, 28, 32, 17:1, 22:4, 27:1-2; “Healing: The Beginning of Love“; “Disciple: The Pattern of Your Life“; “Thinking of Love“)
Disciples are to be like Yahshua [Jesus]. Our Messiah did not complicate his life through acquiring property, goods and wealth that honor a lifestyle of mammon through the ways of the world. He did not worry about his station in the world, but only about spiritual matters through teaching, prophecy, admonition and confrontation. Christians are to ‘grow up’ and witness to others in the same way as Yahshua [Jesus] did while avoiding the ways of the world. Christians don’t focus on the human perception of ‘rights’ to explain their clinging to selfishness, pride or as an excuse for evil. (Matthew 7:1-5; James 1:19-20, 4:11-12; “A Hidden Lifestyle Message from Messiah“; “The Politics of Pride“; “Putting Down the Titanic Pride of Man – Placing Satan Under Your Feet“; “Do You Live a Lifestyle of Greed?“) Remember that what resides in the world is the realm of demons. Don’t bear an attitude that isn’t like that of your Master!
Yahshua [Jesus] was humble. He gave Himself up in service to mankind for those that would listen. He came to personally identify with the sin of mankind. In the same way, disciples need to have the attitude of a servant. This brotherly love isn’t expressed through fear or guilt. You choose your attitude. You can approach life expecting to be served or you can look for opportunities to serve others. (Mark 10:45) Yahshua [Jesus] had the nature of Elohim and in much the same way you can bring Elohim into your life by exhibiting the nature of Messiah. (John 1:1; Colossians 1:15-19) Yahshua [Jesus] humbled Himself so that you could have eternal life. Yahshua [Jesus] was glorified and the sanctified of Elohim will be glorified through personal obedience and resting in His Spirit. This is a demonstration of personal love for YHWH’s Kingdom which brings great joy. (Philippians 2; spiritual fruit) This humility allows disciples of Messiah to be on good terms with others, especially within the body or gathering of Messiah. (Psalm 37:7-13, 147:5-6; “Messiah Teaches about Fruit in the Lives of People“; “Disciples of Messiah and Spiritual Fruit“; “Disciple: Are You Bearing Fruit?“; “Spiritual Fruit & Renewing Your Mind“)
Strife, grudges and the lack of forgiveness are actually dangerous to your right-standing with YHWH. (Leviticus 19:18; Proverbs 29:22)
“For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But, if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.” Matthew 6:14-15, NKJV
When you have been abused, hurt or insulted, the temptation is to strike back, to plot revenge, or to simmer in bitterness. Humility and unity in holy brotherhood help to fight against the tools of Satan which will work for your destruction and the destruction of others. (This is why there is so much strife and dissent in ‘Christianity.’) Instead, ask your Heavenly Father to love through you, especially those that may have brought harm your way. Your Father YHWH requires forgiveness, or else He will NOT in return forgive you. How you judge is how you will be judged. (Matthew 7:1-2; Luke 6:37) If you are unwilling or unable to forgive, then there is no use to ask YHWH for what He told you He will not give. Dealing with any lack of forgiveness in your heart and mind is the first priority for a disciple. (Matthew 20:25-28; Luke 14:8-11, 22:25-27; Romans 2:1, 15:1-2) It is clear that possessing humility is vital to the ‘man in Messiah.’ (Ephesians 2:15, 4:22-24; Colossians 3:9-11; Romans 6:6; “Is Your Forgiveness Real?“; “The Truth About Anger“; “The Stronghold of Anger“; “Breakthrough Prayer: Bitterness“)