What comes of humility? “Before honor is humility.” Humility is the herald which ushers in the great king; it walks before honor; and he who has humility, will have honor afterwards. I will only apply this spiritually.
Have you been brought today to feel, that in yourself you are less than nothing, and vanity? Art thou humbled in the sight of God, to know your own unworthiness, your fallen estate in Adam, and the ruin you have brought upon yourself by your own sins? Have you been brought to feel yourself incapable of working out your own salvation, unless God shall work in you, to will and to do of his own good pleasure? Have you been brought to say, “Lord, have mercy upon me, a sinner?” Well, then, as true as the text is in the Bible, you shall have honor by-and-bye.
“Such honor have all the saints.” You shall have honor soon to be washed from all your guilt; you shall have honor soon to be clothed in the robes of Jesus, in the royal garments of the King; you shall have honor soon to be adopted into his family, to be received amongst the blood-washed ones who have been justified by faith. You shall have honor to be borne, as on eagles’ wings, to be carried across the river, and at last to sing his praise, who has been the “Death of deaths, and hell’s destruction.” You shall have honor to wear the crown, and wave the palm one day, for you have now that humility which comes from God. You may fear that because you are now humbled by God, you must perish.
I beseech you do not think so; as truly as ever the Lord has humbled you, he will exalt you. And the more you are brought low, the less hope you have of mercy; the more you are in the dust, so much the more reason you have to hope. So far from the bottom of the sea being a place over which we cannot be carried to heaven, it is one of the nearest places to heaven’s gate.
And if you are brought to the very lowest place to which even Jonah descended, you are so much the nearer being accepted. The more you know your vileness; remember the blacker, the more filthy, the more unworthy you are in your own esteem, so much the more right have you to expect that you will be saved.
Verily, honor shall come after humility. Humble souls, rejoice; proud souls, go on in your proud ways, but know that they end in destruction.
Climb up the ladder of your pride, you shall fall over on the other side and be dashed to pieces. Ascend the steep hill of your glory; the higher you climb the more terrible will be your fall. For know you this, that against none hath the Lord Almighty bent his bow more often, and against none has he shot his arrows more furiously than against the proud and mighty man that exalteth himself.
Bow down, O man, bow down; “Kiss the Son, lest he be angry, and ye perish from the way, when his wrath is kindled but a little. Blessed are all they that put their trust in him.”
Charles Haddon Spurgeon, from the sermon Pride and Humility,
delivered on August 17, 1856, at New Park Street Chapel, Southwark