Humility by Andrew Murray (1 of 12)

第一章  謙卑是受造者的榮耀 Chapter 1–Humility: The Glory of the Creature

把他們的冠冕放在寶座前說:我們的主,我們的神,你是配得榮耀尊貴權柄的,因為你創造了萬物,並且萬物是因神的旨意被創造而有的。(啟四:11)
“They shall cast their crowns before the throne, so saying: Worthy art Thou, our Lord and our God, to receive the glory, and the honour and the power: for Thou didst create all things, and because of Thy will then are, and were created. “ Rev. 4:11

神創造宇宙有一個目的,要使受造者分享他的完全與福氣,從而彰顯出神的愛、智慧與能力之榮耀。神盼望將他自己啟示在受造者裏面,並藉著受造者彰顯他自己,他按著受造者所能領受的程度,把他自己的美善和榮耀交通給他們。但此種交通不是賜予受造者某樣可以據為己有的東西(比方某種生命或美善之物),使受造者有管理權並隨意支配。決非如此!神既是永活、永在、永遠行動著的那一位,常用他權能的命令托住萬有,而萬有也靠他而立,因此受造物與神之間只有一種關係–受造物必須不住地、絕對地、毫無例外地倚靠神。神怎樣用他的能力一次創造了萬有,照樣他每一時刻都藉此能力托住萬有。受造者不僅在回溯其起源與最初存在時,承認一切都是出於神,而今受造者最關切的事、最高的德行與唯一的福祉是–使自己成為倒空的器皿,讓神居住並彰顯他的能力和榮美,從今直到永遠。

神不是只一次賜下生命就一勞永逸了;他時刻藉著大能大力賜下他的生命,永不停息。所以就萬物的本質而言,謙卑–全然倚賴神的地位,是受造者的首要職責與最高德行,也是各樣美德之根本。

驕傲,或失去謙卑,乃各樣罪惡之源。如今已墮落的天使們起初就是以自滿的態度看自己,而走向悖逆、不順服,從天上的榮光掉進外面的黑暗裏。同樣地,當蛇把驕傲的毒氣(“你們便如神”),吹入第一對先祖的心中時,他們也從尊貴的地位落入現今人類淒慘的境遇。不論在天上或地上,驕傲、自我抬舉乃地獄之源、地獄之門與地獄之咒詛(參注一)。

因此我們所得著的救贖就是得回所失去的謙卑,此乃受造者與神之間原有的唯一真正關係。所以耶穌把謙卑帶回這地上,使我們與謙卑有份,並藉著謙卑拯救我們。他從高天虛己,成為人的樣式。我們在他身上所看見的謙卑,是他在天上原本的性情。這謙卑把他帶到地上來,同時他也把天上的謙卑帶了來。在這地上”自己卑微,存心順服,以至於死”(腓二8);他的謙卑使他的死有價值,因而成了我們的救贖。如今他所賜給我們的救恩不是別的,乃是使我們有份於他的生命和他的死、他的性情和他的靈、以及他的謙卑–這是他與父神的基本關係,也是他成全救贖大工的根基。耶穌基督藉著他全然謙卑的生命,取了受造者的地位與定命。他的謙卑成了我們的拯救,他的救恩成了我們的謙卑。

得救之聖徒身上應有這種從罪中得釋放,完全得回原初地位的印記;謙卑應滲透生命和生活的每一部分,成為人與神之間的唯一關係,否則人無法真正住在神的同在裏,也無法經驗神的恩惠與聖靈的能力,而信心、愛、喜樂和力量也無法長存。恩典只能紮根於”謙卑”這塊土壤,所以各樣缺陷與失敗都在證明人缺少謙卑。謙卑不能與其他恩典或德行並論,它是根本,是受造物在神面前唯一正確的態度–真正尊他為神,使他能自由地行作一切。

神造人是有理性的,當我們愈真切地領悟到”命令”的意義、絕對性與必要性,我們就愈準備好要完全順從。今日的教會太不重視”謙卑”這呼召,因為人太不瞭解”謙卑”的真實意義與重要性。它不是一種我們要帶到神面前的東西,也不是他要賜下的東西;謙卑乃是意識到自己毫無所有,真正看見神是一切,遂讓路以便讓神成為一切。一旦受造者明白這是真正尊貴之事,同意作一個空器皿,讓神的生命和榮耀作工,並彰顯在他的意志、思想、感情中,他就會發現謙卑不過是承認他作為受造者的真正地位–降服於神。

在那些追求聖潔、自認為聖潔的熱心基督徒身上,謙卑應當是首要標誌。但常常有人不以為然。也許有一個原因是教會沒有把有關謙卑的教訓與榜樣放在應有的最高、最重要之地位。而這種情形又歸因於人們忽略一項事實:縱然罪的強大力量足以構成人要謙卑的動機,但有一個更廣、更大的力量,使得天使們、耶穌和天上最聖潔的聖徒們謙卑俯伏;受造者身上的首要標誌與蒙福之秘訣就是–謙卑下來,成為一無所有,讓神自由地成為一切的一切。

我相信許多基督徒有和我一樣的經歷,雖然早已認識主,卻不明白作為主”的門徒最顯著的特徵是心裏柔和謙卑。這種謙卑不會自動來臨,必須成為我們追求、禱告、相信、操練之目標。當我們讀聖經時,會發現耶穌再三對門徒強調這事,而他們對他所說的話,理解得何等遲鈍。所以讓我們在開始默想這件事時,先承認驕傲比其他所有的一切更根深蒂固地隱伏在人裏頭,沒有比驕傲更難辦、更危險的東西了。只有堅忍地操練等候神和基督,才會發現自己何等缺少謙卑這項恩典,也無力去得著我們所尋求的。讓我們仔細思想基督的品格,直到我們全心愛慕並讚賞他的謙卑。當我們覺察自己的驕傲,又因著無力對付驕傲而慟哭時,讓我們相信耶穌基督自己要進到我們裏面來,把這恩典賜給我們,作為它奇妙生命的一部分。

附注一

驕傲可以把最高的天使降為魔鬼,而謙卑可以使墮落的血肉之體升上天使的寶座–這真理將顯明至永永遠遠。神最終的目的是要從墮落的天使所掌管的國度裏興起一批新的族類來。於是這批新族類成為爭戰的焦點,介於墮落天使的驕傲氣焰與神羔羊的謙卑之間;當末後號筒吹響時,這偉大的真理將顯明永永遠遠。邪惡起源于驕傲,終止於謙卑,驕傲必須在你裏面死掉,否則屬乎天堂的一切不會活在你裏面。你必須在這項真理的旗幟下,降服於聖者耶穌柔和謙卑的靈。你必須種下謙卑,否則在天堂無以收成。不要以為驕傲只是一種不合宜的脾性,也不要以為謙卑不過是一項高尚的品德。前者是死亡,後者是生命,前者全然是地獄,後者完全是天堂。你裏面有多少驕傲,就表示有多少墮落的天使活在你裏面。 你具有多少真實的謙卑,就表示神羔羊在你要面有多少。如果你能看見每一樣驕傲的活動對你造成什麼後果,你將不惜失去一隻手或一隻眼,只求能夠從身上扯掉這條毒蛇。如果你能看見謙卑帶來何等甘甜、神聖的改變能力,如何驅散了你天性中的毒氣,使神的靈能住在你裏面的空處,你將寧願被全世界踏在腳底下,也不願失去一點點的謙卑。(摘自The Spirit of Prayir,Pt. Ⅱ,P.73,Edition of Moreton, Canterbury,1893.)

(取自慕安得烈所著之《謙卑》)

 

Chapter 1–HUMILITY: THE GLORY OF THE CREATURE

“They shall cast their crowns before the throne, so saying: Worthy art Thou, our Lord and our God, to receive the glory, and the honour and the power: for Thou didst create all things, and because of Thy will then are, and were created. “ Rev. 4:11

When God created the universe, it was with the one object of making the creature partaker of His perfection and blessedness, and so showing forth in it the glory of His love and wisdom and power. God wished to reveal Himself in and through created beings by communicating to them as much of His own goodness and glory as they were capable of receiving. But this communication was not a giving to the creature something which it could possess in itself, a certain life or goodness, of which it had the charge and disposal.By no means. But as God is the ever-living, ever-present, ever-acting One, who upholdeth all things by the word of His power, and in whom all things exist, the relation of the creature to God could only be one of unceasing, absolute, universal dependence. As truly as God by His power once created, so truly by that same power must God every moment maintain. The creature has not only to look back to the origin and first beginning of existence, and acknowledge that it there owes everything to God; its chief care, its highest virtue, its only happiness, now and through all eternity, is to present itself an empty vessel, in which God can dwell and manifest His power and goodness.

The life God bestows is imparted not once for all, but each moment continuously, by the unceasing operation of His mighty power. Humility, the place of entire dependence on God, is, from the very nature of things, the first duty and the highest virtue of the creature, and the root of every virtue.

And so pride, or the loss of this humility, is the root of every sin and evil. It was when the now fallen angels began to look upon themselves with self-complacency that they were led to disobedience, and were cast down from the light of heaven into outer darkness. Even so it was, when the serpent breathed the poison of his pride, the desire to be as God, into the hearts of our first parents, that they too fell from their high estate into all the wretchedness in which man is now sunk. In heaven and earth, pride, self-exaltation, is the gate and the birth, and the curse, of hell. (See Note “A” at end of chapter.)

Hence it follows that nothing can be our redemption, but the restoration of the ‘lost humility, the original and only true relation of the creature to its God. And so Jesus came to bring humility back to earth, to make us partakers of it, and by it to save us. In heaven He humbled Himself to become man. The humility we see in Him possessed Him in heaven; it brought Him, He brought it, from there. Here on earth “He humbled Himself, and became obedient unto death”; His humility gave His death its value, and so became our redemption. And now the salvation He imparts is nothing less and nothing else than a communication of His own life and death, His own disposition and spirit, His own humility, as the ground and root of His relation to God and His redeeming work. Jesus Christ took the place and fulfilled the destiny of man, as a creature, by His life of perfect humility. His humility is our salvation. His salvation is our humility.

And so the life of the saved ones, of the saints, must needs bear this stamp of deliverance from sin, and full restoration to their original state; their whole relation to God and man marked by an allpervading humility. Without this there can be no true abiding in God’s presence, or experience of His favor and the power of His Spirit; without this no abiding faith, or love or joy or strength. Humility is the only soil in which the graces root; the lack of humility is the sufficient explanation of every defect and failure. Humility is not so much a grace or virtue along with others; it is the root of all, because it alone takes the right attitude before God, and allows Him as God to do all.

God has so constituted us as reasonable beings, that the truer the insight into the real nature or the absolute need of a command, the readier and fuller will be our obedience to it. The call to humility has been too little regarded in the Church because its true nature and importance has been too little apprehended. It is not a something which we bring to God, or He bestows; it is simply the sense of entire nothingness, which comes when we see how truly God is all, and in which we make way for God to be all. When the creature realizes that this is the true nobility, and consents to be with his will, his mind, and his affections, the form, the vessel in which the life and glory of God are to work and manifest themselves, he sees that humility is simply acknowledging the truth of his position as creature, and yielding to God His place.

In the life of earnest Christians, of those who pursue and profess holiness, humility ought to be the chief mark of their uprightness. It is often said that it is not so. May not one reason be that in the teaching and example of the Church, it has never had that place of supreme importance which belongs to it? And that this, again, is owing to the neglect of this truth, that strong as sin is as a motive to humility, there is one of still wider and mightier influence, that which makes the angels, that which made Jesus, that which makes the holiest of saints in heaven, so humble; that the first and chief mark of the relation of the creature, the secret of his blessedness, is the humility and nothingness which leaves God free to be all?

I am sure there are many Christians who will confess that their experience has been very much like my own in this, that we had long known the Lord without realizing that meekness and lowliness of heart are to be the distinguishing feature of the disciple as they were of the Master. And further, that this humility is not a thing that will come of itself, but that it must be made the object of special desire and prayer and faith and practice. As we study the word, we shall see what very distinct and oft-repeated instructions Jesus gave His disciples on this point, and how slow they were in understanding Him. Let us, at the very commencement of our meditations, admit that there is nothing so natural to man, nothing so insidious and hidden from our sight, nothing so difficult and dangerous, as pride. Let us feel that nothing but a very determined and persevering waiting on God and Christ will discover how lacking we are in the grace of humility, and how impotent to obtain what we seek. Let us study the character of Christ until our souls are filled with the love and admiration of His lowliness. And let us believe that, when we are broken down under a sense of our pride, and our impotence to cast it out, Jesus Christ Himself will come in to impart this grace too, as a part of His wondrous life within us.

NOTE A–

“All this is to make it known the region of eternity that pride can degrade the highest angels into devils, and humility raise fallen flesh and blood to the thrones of angels. Thus, this is the great end of God raising a new creation out of a fallen kingdom of angels: for this end it stands in its state of war betwixt the fire and pride of fallen angels, and the humility of the Lamb of God, that the last trumpet may sound the great truth through the depths of eternity, that evil can have no beginning but from pride, and no end but from humility. The truth is this: Pride may die in you, or nothing of heaven can live in you. Under the banner of the truth, give yourself up to the meek and humble spirit of the holy Jesus. Humility must sow seed, or there can be no reaping in Heaven. Look not at pride only as an unbecoming temper, nor at humility only as a decent virtue: for the one is death, and the other is life; the one is all hell, the other is all heaven. So much as you have of pride within you, you have of the fallen angels alive in you; so much as you have of true humility, so much you have of the Lamb of God within you. Could you see what every stirring of pride does to your soul, you would beg of everything you meet to tear the viper from you, though with the loss of a hand or an eye. Could you see what a sweet, divine, transforming power there is in humility, how it expels the poison of your nature, and makes room for the Spirit of God to live in you, you would rather wish to be the footstool of all the world than want the smallest degree of it.” –Spirit of Prayer, Pt.II, p.73, Edition of Moreton, Canterbury, 1893.

(taken from Humility by Andrew Murray)

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