Continuing our series on The Treasure in the Field, A Submissive Spirit
While the example of Jesus’ perfect submissiveness may seem to be daunting, we find encouragement in Hebrews 5:8. There we read that even for Jesus, obedience was a skill to be learned; it is a process, not instantaneous. Jesus was never disobedient. But at every point in his life he had to learn how to be obedient in the new circumstances. It was something he had to learn at every stage through his sufferings. And even for Jesus, obedience had to be learned and worked out in the context of delegated authority.
Every man of God has to follow in his footsteps. He has blazed a trail for bringing many sons to glory. The way into our inheritance in the kingdom is the pathway he took: the way of submissive obedience. The pattern is repeated in the lives of countless of God’s saints. David provides us with another example. As a young boy he learned to be obedient to his father. The Scriptures give us repeated references to his submissiveness to those the Lord placed over him - his father and the king (e.g. 1Sam 16:19,20,22; 17:20; 18:5,25,27). And all this was in spite of knowing that he was destined to become king, and in spite of the misunderstandings of his brothers and the mistreatment by the king who was over him.
The crown is reserved for the submissive in spirit. The meek shall inherit the earth. Such submissiveness can only be learned through suffering. And it always has to be worked out in practical reality in the context in which God has placed us. The Kingdom of God is built with submissive hearts. There is a place in the kingdom for those who humbly bow the knee to the King of the Kingdom. But we dare not be too pietistic in our understanding of what such submissiveness means. It is worked out in real life and in real relationships. The reality of our desire to be obedient has to be seen on earth. After all, the coming of the kingdom is God’s will being done on earth as it is in heaven.