Andrew Murray is recognized as one of the great inspirational writers of all time. He wrote over 240 books or booklets during his lifetime, most of a devotional nature, which have sold millions of copies around the world. He was a Dutch reformed missionary to South Africa, had eight children, all whom devoted themselves to Christian ministry. He died at 88 years of age in 1917. The following is derived from the first two chapters of his book entitled Humility.
The Angelfall Manifesto
The Glory of the Creature
by Andrew Murray
"They will cast their crowns before the throne, saying, Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created" (Rev 4:10,11).
When God created the universe, it was with one objective of making the creature partaker of His perfection and blessedness, and so showing forth in the creature the glory of His love and wisdom and power. God wished to reveal Himself in and through created beings by communicating to them as much of His own goodness and glory as they were capable of receiving.
But this communication was not the giving to the creature something which it could possess in itself, a certain life or godness, of which it had the charge and disposal. By no means. As God is the ever-living, ever-present, ever-acting One, who upholdeth all things in the universe by the word of His power, and in whom all things exist—the relation of the creature to God could only be one of unceasing, absolute, and universal dependence.
As truly as God by His power once created all things, so truly by that same power must God every moment maintain. The creature has not only to look back to its origin and first beginning of its existence, and acknowledge that there it owes everything to God— its chief care, its highest virtue, its only happiness, now and throughout all eternity—is to present itself an empty vessel, in which God can dwell by His Holy spirit and manifest His power and goodness.
The life God bestows is not imparted once for all, but each moment continuously, by the unceasing operation of His mighty power. Humility, the place of entire dependence on God, is, from the very nature of things, the first duty and the highest virtue of the creature, and the root of every virtue.
And so pride, or the loss of this humility, is the root of every sin and evil.
It was when the now fallen angels began to look upon themselves with self-complacency that they were led to disobedience, and were cast down from the light of heaven into outer darkness. Even so it was, when the serpent breathed the poison of his pride, the desire to be as God, into the hearts of our first parents, that they too fell from their high estate into all the wretchedness in which man is now sunk. In heaven and earth, pride, self-exaltation, is the gate and the birth, and the curse of hell.
All this occurred to make it known through the region of eternity that pride can degrade the highest angels into devils, and humility raise the fallen flesh and blood to the throne of angels. Thus, this is the great end of God raising a new creation out of a fallen kingdom of angels; for this end it stands in its state of war between the fire and pride of fallen angels, and the humility of the Lamb of God, that the last trumpet may sound the truth throughout the depths of eternity, that evil can have no beginning but from pride, and no end but from humility.
No tree can grow except on the root from which it sprang [as the forbidden tree of knowledge]. Through all its existence it can only live with the life that was in the seed that gave it its very existence. The full apprehension of this truth cannot but help us to greatly understand both the need and the nature of the redemption there is in Jesus, and why Jesus came to earth and died on the cross for our sins.
When the Old Serpent, who had been cast out from heaven for his pride, whose whole nature as devil was pride, spoke his words of temptation into the ear of Eve, these words carried with them the very poison of hell. And when she listened, and yielded her desire and her will to the prospect of becoming as God to know [and determine] good from evil, the poison entered into her soul and her very blood and life, destroying for ever that blessed humility and dependence upon God which would have been our everlasting happiness.
And instead of this, her life and the life of the entire human race that sprang from her as mother—it became corrupted to its very root with that most terrible of all sins and curses—the poison of Satan's own pride.
All the wretchedness of which this world has been the scene, all its wars and bloodshed among the nations, all its selfishness and suffering, all its ambitions and jealousies, all its broken hearts and embittered lives, with all its daily unhappiness, have their origin in what this cursed, hellish, pride, either our own, or that of others, has brought us.
It is pride that made redemption needful; it is from our pride we need above everything to be redeemed. And our insight into the need of redemption will largely depend upon our knowledge of the terrible nature of the power of pride that has entered our very being.
No tree can grow except on the root from which it sprang. The power that Satan brought from hell, and cast into man's life, is working daily, hourly, with mighty power throughout the world. Men suffer from it; they fear and fight and flee it; and yet they know not from where it comes, from where it has its terrible supremacy. No wonder they do not know where or how it is to be overcome.
Pride has its root and strength in a terrible spiritual power, outside of us as well as within us; as needful as it is that we confess and deplore it as our very own, is it to know it in its Satanic origin. If this leads us to utter despair of ever conquering or casting it out, it will lead us all the sooner to that supernatural power in which alone our deliverance is to be found—the redemption of the humble Lamb of God.
No tree can grow except on the root from which it sprang. Even as we need to look to the first Adam and his fall to know the power of the sin within us, we need to know well the Second Adam Jesus and His power to give within us a new life of humility as real and abiding and overmastering as has been that of pride.
The truth is this: Pride must die in you, or nothing of heaven can live in you. Under the banner of this truth, give yourself up to the meek and humble spirit of the Holy Jesus. Humility must sow the seed, or there can be no reaping in heaven. Look not at pride only as a becoming temper, nor at humility only as a decent virtue: for the one is death, and the other is life: the one is all hell, the other is all heaven.
Hence it follows that nothing can be our redemption, but the restoration of the lost humility, the original and only true relation of the creature to God. And so Jesus came to bring humility back to earth, to make us partakers of it, and by it to save us.
While in heaven He humbled Himself to become man and be born into this world. The humility we see in Him possessed Him in heaven; it brought Him, He brought it, from there. Here on earth "He humbled Himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross" (Phi 2:8). His humility gave His death its value, and so it became our redemption. And now the salvation He imparts is nothing less and nothing else than a communication of His own life and death, His own disposition and Spirit, His own humility, as the ground and root of His relationship to God His Father, and His redeeming work in us as individuals.
Jesus Christ took our place and fulfilled the destiny of man, as a man, by His life of perfect humility. His humility is our salvation. His salvation is our humility. His death on the cross is the only thing that guarantees us eternal life. And so the life of each Christian saint, must needs bear this stamp of deliverance from sin, and full restoration to the original state—our whole relation to God and man must be marked by an all-pervading humility.
Without this humility there can be no true abiding in God's presence, or experience of His favor and the power of His Spirit; without this humility there is no abiding faith, or love or joy or strength. Humility is the only soil in which the graces root; the lack of humility is the sufficient explanation of every defect and failure and sin in the world. Humility is not so much a grace of virtue along with other virtues; it is the root of all the virtues, because it alone takes the right attitude before God, and allows Him as God to do all and be all.
The call to humility has been too little regarded in the Christian Church, because its true nature and importance is simply not comprehended by Christians. It is not something we bring to God or He bestows. It is simply the sense of our entire nothingness, which comes when we see how truly God is all, and in which we make room for God to be all within us.
When the creature realizes that this is the true nobility, and consents to be in agreement with God's will—God's mind, and God's affections—and he becomes the vessel in which the life and glory of God are to work and manifest themselves—he then sees the fact that humility is simply acknowledging the truth of his position as a creature, and yielding to God his position as Creator—that which makes the angels, that which makes Jesus, that which makes the holiest of saints in heaven, so humble; that the first and chief mark of the relation of the creature, the secret of his blessedness, is the humility and nothingness which leaves God free to be all?
Let us admit that there is nothing so natural to man, nothing so insidious and hidden from from our sight, nothing so difficult to manage and dangerous, as pride. Let us study the character of Jesus until our souls are filled with the love and admiration of His lowliness. And let us believe that, when we are broken down under a sense of our pride, and our helplessness to cast it out, Jesus Christ will come into our lives Himself to impart this grace as well, so as to make His own humility the wondrous life within us.
So much as you have pride within you, you have of the fallen angel alive in you; so much as you have of true humility, so much you have of the Lamb of God within you. Until a humility which will rest in nothing less the end of death and of self; which gives up all the honor of men as Jesus did, to seek the honor that comes from God alone; which absolutely makes and counts itself nothing, that God may be all, that the Lord alone may be exalted—until such a humility be what we seek in Christ above our chief joy, and welcome at any price, there is very little hope of a religion that will conquer the world.
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This humility is the one thing that the message of Angelfall should bring into the lives of all who comprehend and apply its truth.
"Have this mind in you which was also in Christ Jesus: who emptied Himself, taking the form of a servant; and humbled Himself, becoming obedient unto death. Wherefore God also highly exalted Him" (Phi 2:5-9).