God exalt those who humble themselves before Him. Christains who desire divine promotion, should humble themselves before God and he will lift them up or promote them. He acts in the favour of those who are humble. So how should you humble yourself before the Lord?
- By submitting to God. This is a call for the Christians to recognize his/her own spiritual poverty and to acknowledge his/her desperate need of God’s help and to submit to God’s commanding will for his/her life. The first step to humility is to acknowledge that we are inclined to pride and that God alone can help us out and hence be disposed to his leadership in our lives.
- By resisting the Devil. The devil’s primary purpose is to separate God and man. The believers must resist this separation, whatever power Satan may have, the Christians can be absolutely certain that he has been given the ability to overcome that power.
- By drawing near to God. Instead of succumbing to Satan’s desires to lure us into sin and separating us from the sweet fellowship with God, we should draw near to God. God will graciously respond by drawing near to us in turn.
In James 4:7-10, James is not talking about salvation but the repentance of those who are already born again Christians.
- By Cleansing your hands. James bluntly addresses his audience, “you sinners”, calling on them to cleanse their hands. We sin in many ways including the use of our hands or actions in general. Jesus equally warned
that if your hand causes you to sin, then cut it off. There is a common adage that he who watches his hands can eat with the elders. Cleaning of hands here means the work of your hands should be pure and just. Remember James had just addressed the issue of making unjust gain.
- By purifying your hearts. The heart is the central processing unit of every human activity. James calls upon “ you double minded” to purify your heart. A christian who seeks to become a friend of the world cannot please God at the
same time. The believer is pulled and torn between pleasing the world and pleasing God. “ To allow the world to entice us away from a total, single minded allegiance to God is to become people who are divided in loyalties, double-minded and spiritually unstable.” The humble youth which Gd elevates is that one who has a clear cut between worldly pleasures and kingdom business.
- By being wretched. Oftentimes believers desire to remain happy. This is a good desire, but you must remember that there is no happiness when we live in sin. Each time we sin we need to realise and be sad about our action then
repentance will spring forth. People often see only that bright side of our lives while our dark side is hidden. “Sorrow is better than laughter, because a sad face is good for the heart. Eccl 7:3. Judging one’s self now and taking the
right steps towards God is a great sign of humility
- By letting your laughter be turned to mourning. James resounds Jesus’ words in Luke 6:25b, “Woe to you that laugh now, for you shall mourn and weep”. Mourning and weeping repels God’s wrath and attracts God’s mercy. The tendency is for some Christians to take the grace of God for granted and slip into a sinful life. Only true repentance can bring true joy and a humility that God approves.
These should become the new attitudes of the christian who desires divine promotion and approval. All other previous sinful behaviour should be discarded.