Born again believers in the Lord Jesus Christ still possess within our flesh the potential for sin, which leads at times to the actuality of sin. No less than the Apostle Paul confessed this truth about himself.
“In my flesh dwelleth no good thing… I see another law, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin in my members” (Romans 7:18; 23).
The proper lowly view of ourselves results from this continuing of sin in our flesh, and in our experience. Every honest Christian will acknowledge that we still inexcusably distrust and disobey our Lord despite the dynamic presence of the Holy Spirit in our enlivened spirits. Our spiritual enemies tempt us to think, speak, act and relate in contradiction to who we are in Christ, and we sometimes succumb. Indeed, the fact of who we are (and Whose we are) makes our waywardness all the more inexcusable, and the lowly view of ourselves all the more appropriate.
It is easy to hold this perspective of other Christians, whose failings somehow seem much bigger than our own. The lowly view, however, commands that we look into the mirror of our own reflection rather than gaze through the window at others. Indeed, if anyone else’s sins loom larger in my mind than my own, I can be sure that the Holy Spirit is working to douse the destructive flame of pride in my perspective and attitude. The lowly view He fosters directs attention toward me rather than thee, as it were, resulting in the humility that redeems us from the wicked insanity of arrogant self-importance.
As long as our sins made necessary the agonized sorrow and death of the Lord Jesus on the cross, the lowly view will be more than appropriate. It will be necessary for a walk with God based on truth and reality. “Search me, o God, and know my heart. Try me, and know my thoughts. And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting” (Psalm 139:23-24; emphasis added). Maintaining always the attitude of this prayer – the lowly view – establishes our feet firmly on the path of righteousness, and our hearts faithfully in the work of the Spirit in our lives.
“And the son said unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and in thy sight, and am no more worthy to be called thy son. But the father said to his servants, Bring forth the best robe, and put it on him; and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet.”