Isaiah 44:6 – Thus saith the LORD the King of Israel, and his redeemer the LORD of hosts; I am the first, and I am the last; and beside me there is no God.
In a competitive culture where you are expected to be faster, stronger, smarter, more innovative, more durable, and generally better than your competitors, it is hard to put others first. Where’s the reward in humility?
By contrast, the Word of God is full of examples of where a meek and humble person triumphs. Joseph, Moses, Gideon, King David, Ruth, Ester, Abigail, Mary, and others humbled themselves putting the needs of others before their own. Each of these individuals faithfully served God and their people with self-sacrificing devotion. While they may seem exceptional, these people are merely a few of a countless number of disciples of the God who is first and last.
Certainly, God the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit is first in glory and first in power as well as wisdom and understanding. It is also accurate to say that God is complete or first and last in faithfulness and righteousness. However, in another sense, God is glorious and yet humble, almighty and yet meek. He is first and last.
An amazing truth about Christ (and God generally) is that He sacrificed glory to be meek and lowly in service to His people. Christ, the first born Son of God, came from glory with the Father to become sin for rebellious people. To be first in service to God the Father, Christ put all the children in the eternal kingdom before himself. This made Him last and yet first before God.
So the next time you want to be first, remember Christ’s example. Be meek and lowly in sympathy to your peers. Help those in need even if it puts you last in line. God will remember. He always does.