Upstarts and the Truly Great
I have seen slaves on horses, and princes walking on the ground like slaves.
Upstarts frequently steal the highest places, while the truly great struggle in obscurity. This is a riddle in providence whose solution will one day gladden the hearts of the upright; but it is so common a fact that none of us should complain if we face the experience. When our Lord was on earth, although He is the Prince of the kings of the earth, yet He walked the footpath of weariness and service as the Servant of servants.
It should then be no surprise if His followers, who are princes in His line, should also be looked down upon as inferior and contemptible persons. The world is upside-down, and therefore the first are last and the last first. Consider how the servile sons of Satan lord it in the earth! What a high horse they ride! How they exalt themselves. David wanders on the mountains, while Saul reigns in state; Elijah is complaining in the cave, while Jezebel is boasting in the palace. Yet who would wish to take the places of the proud rebels? And who, on the other hand, might not envy the despised saints? When the wheel turns, those who are lowest rise, and the highest sink. Patience, then, believer, eternity will right the wrongs of time.
Let us not fall into the error of letting our passions and sinful appetites ride in triumph, while our nobler powers walk in the dust. Grace must reign as a prince and make the members of our bodies instruments of righteousness. The Holy Spirit loves order, and He therefore sets our powers and faculties in proper rank and place, giving the highest room to those spiritual faculties that link us with the great King; let us not disturb the divine arrangement but ask for grace to keep our body under control and bring it into subjection. We were not made new to allow our passions to rule over us, but in order that, as kings, we may reign in Christ Jesus over the triple kingdom of spirit, soul, and body, to the glory of God the Father.
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