I attend a Protestant church. It is a great church in many ways, by far the best community that I have ever been a part of.

They have embarked on a study of the Torah beyond Genesis. They are coming up on the giving of the Law and so took two Sundays to expound on the importance of the Law. It has been very frustrating for me, because they only are acknowledging about 30% of the value of the Law and that I see

You just spelled the whole thing out. The point of the Law is to teach the humility that you describe. And when the Jews could not do it, God Himself descended as a babe in a manger, and emptying Himself and teaching us humility.

On this humility hangs all of the Law and the Prophets. But wait, don’t the Law and the Prophets hand on loving God and loving your neighbor? Yes, they do. But you can’t love God, or for that matter your neighbor, without the humility taught by Hesus.

Expand full comment

Thank you, Jeff! I think this passage from St. Paul beautifully explains the relationship between faith, humility and the Law: "What do we conclude, then? Why, that the Gentiles, who never aimed at justifying themselves, attained justification, the justification which comes of faith;

whereas the Israelites aimed at a disposition which should justify them, and never reached it.

Why was this? Because they hoped to derive their justification from observance, not from faith." (Rom 9:30-32) This does not mean, of course, that morality is unimportant, since "faith without works is dead." (James 2:26) It means that many Jews thought they could earn the initial justification through the rituals or rules of the Law rather than as a free gift of faith from God, but Christ taught them the necessity of humility. As St. Augustine taught: "The Law was given that grace might be sought; grace was given that the Law might be kept." I'm glad you enjoyed my reflection!

Expand full comment

Yes, that is it exactly. Thanks, Kaleb. Words of wisdom.

Expand full comment

I use 1Peter 5:5-7 as the main definition of humility toward God. It tells us to cast all of our care on God. It is necessary for receiving grace; therefore, it is fundamental for everything (cf. James 4:5-10; Philippians 4:6-7). When Jesus tells us of His humility and to learn from Him, I believe that this is the humility that Peter speaks of because it inevitably brings rest to our souls when we make use of it, and is the only way to mystical union with Christ. Maybe it’s incomprehensible for most people because it’s too simple. The world prefers to keep us distracted with other things that require more human effort.

Expand full comment