by J. C. Ryle
Humility may well be called the queen of the
Christian graces. To know our own sinfulness
and weakness and to feel our need of Christ is
the start of saving religion.
Humility is a grace which has always been a
distinguishing feature in the character of the
holiest saints in every age. Abraham and Moses
and Job and David and Daniel and Paul were all
eminently humble men.
Above all, humility is a grace within the reach of
every true Christian. All converted people should
work to adorn with humility the doctrine they profess.
If they can do nothing else, they can strive to be humble.
Do you want to know the root and spring of humility?
One word describes it. The root of humility is right knowledge.
The person who really knows himself and his own heart,
who knows God and his infinite majesty and holiness,
who knows Christ and the price at which he was redeemed,
that person will never be a proud person.
He will count himself, like Jacob, unworthy of the least
of all God's mercies. He will say of himself, like Job,
"I am unworthy." He will cry, like Paul, "I am the worst
of sinners" He will consider others better than himself
Ignorance--nothing but sheer ignorance, ignorance of
self, of God, and of Christ--is the real secret of pride.
From that miserable self-ignorance may we daily pray
to be delivered. The wise person knows himself and
will find nothing within to make him proud.