The Truly Important Exaltation

As the subject of “exaltation” is considered, perhaps different things come to our minds.  One thing that might come to mind is the thought of being promoted.  This is a form of exaltation.  Another similar thought might be that of being advanced in rank or position.  This sort of exaltation can be achieved through personal effort.  The scriptures teach of another and more important type of exaltation.  Notice these verses: (Luke 18:13-14) And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner. {14} I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other: for every one that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted.  Here we find a person who is portrayed as one who is humble.  This person’s conduct reflects the humbleness of his heart.  Attached to this attitude is a special sort of exaltation that can only come from one source and that source is God.

While we travel life’s journey, we should keep in mind that we are absolutely unable to be self promoted to the truly important places in this world and into eternity.  The scriptures present this lesson to us by example in the persons of Jesus Christ and the devil.  In the scriptures we learn of Jesus Christ: (Phil 2:8-9) And being found in fashion as a man, He humbled Himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. {9} Wherefore God also hath highly exalted Him, and given Him a name which is above every name.  Jesus Christ humbled Himself and in so doing this He was exalted above all.  This mighty example is set before all the world so we can consider the importance of submitting to the will of the heavenly Father.  This is the attitude that brings us to say, “Not our will, but Thine be done”.

The opposite example is that of the devil.  Rather than submitting to the will of the heavenly Father, the devil opposed the will of God.  He strove to be as the Father.  He set out to exalt his own self even to the very position of the Father.  Notice these verses: (Isa 14:13 -14) For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north: {14} I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High.  Clearly, the devil thought within himself that he could become that which was nothing but impossible.  He set out to put himself in the very place of the heavenly Father.  For this reason he was cast from heaven and is set on a straight course towards hell.

To some it may seem like we could never submit our selves like the Lord Jesus Christ did.  Before we settle this case, recall the first scriptures presented in this article from the gospel of Luke.  The Bible teaches that ALL who will humble their own self will be exalted.  The person in those verses was exalted.  In as much as God does not respect one person above another, all can be assured of the self same exaltation on the same conditions.  On the other hand we find the condition of the devil.  Here we all may think that they would never self exalt their self to the position of the heavenly Father.  However, when we follow our own will rather than yielding to the will of God, in our own heart, we follow the example of the devil.  So then, let all seek the truly important exaltation as we consider these examples set before us in the scriptures.