Unobtrusive Humility

James 3:13 Amplified says, “Who is there among you who is wise and intelligent? Then let him by his noble living show forth his (good) works with the (unobtrusive) humility (which is the proper attribute) of true wisdom.” We know from this verse that humility is an attribute. When we allow the Holy Spirit to conform our thoughts, purpose, and actions to God’s will and ways, we will exemplify Jesus’ attribute of humility.


Ezra is a great example for us. He lived in unobtrusive humility. It was woven into the fabric of his life. He was in the lineage of priests that went back to Aaron. He had favor with the pagan king who supplied what was needed to restore the temple for worship.

Unobtrusive means not forward but modest. Ezra 8:21 says that Ezra proclaimed a fast, “…that we might humble ourselves before our God…” Why? He wanted them to seek out God’s way for their journey.


There was another reason. Verse 22 says, “For I was ashamed to request of the king an escort of soldiers and horseman…” He was a man of heart integrity. The verse went on to say, “..because we had spoken to the king, saying, The hand of our God is upon all those who seek Him…”

Verse 23 says, “So we fasted and entreated our God for this, and He answered our prayer.” Ezra’s humility led the others. When we lead in pride, no one will follow.


Here is the key the Holy Spirit showed me. Pride does not rise in a humble heart. The reason I am uncomfortable to confess someone else’s sin as MY own is because of pride. Why? I think that I would not do the sin they are doing. Yet sin is sin.

Recalibrate to the truth. Jesus bore the sins of every human being. He identified with our sin as His own. He took our place. Isaiah 53:12 says, “…because He poured out His soul unto death, and He was numbered with the transgressors, and He bore the sins of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.”


Ezra 9:6 says, “…O my God, I am too ashamed and humiliated…” Ezra identified himself as the sinners he was interceding for. He understood the principle from God’s word. He was a skilled scribe in the Law of Moses. 2 Timothy 2:15 calls us to be skilled in God’s word, that it might direct our hearts into a lifestyle of humility.

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