Tim Keller wrote an article in Christianity Today. Link: http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2008/december/20.51.html
Get Your Fresh Humility Here
This is the place where the author is supposed to come up with practical solutions. I don’t have any. Here’s why.
First, the problem is too big for practical solutions. The wing of the evangelical church that is most concerned about the loss of truth and about compromise is actually infamous in our culture for its self-righteousness and pride. However, there are many in our circles who, in reaction to what they perceive as arrogance, are backing away from many of the classic Protestant doctrines (such as Forensic Justification and Substitutionary Atonement) that are crucial and irreplaceable — as well as the best possible resources for humility.
Second, directly talking about practical ways to become humble, either as individuals or as communities, will always backfire. I have said that major wings of the evangelical church are wrong. So who is left? Me? Am I beginning to think only we few, we happy few, have achieved the balance that the church so needs? I think I hear Wormwood whispering in my ear, “Yes, only you can really see things clearly.”
I do hope to clarify, or I wouldn’t have written on the topic at all. But there is no way to begin telling people how to become humble without destroying what fragments of humility they may already possess.
Third, humility is only achieved as a byproduct of understanding, believing, and marveling in the gospel of grace. But the gospel doesn’t change us in a mechanical way. Recently I heard a sociologist say that for the most part, the frameworks of meaning by which we navigate our lives are so deeply embedded in us that they operate “pre-reflectively.” They don’t exist only as a list of propositions, but also as themes, motives, and attitudes. When we listen to the gospel preached or meditate on it in the Scriptures, we are driving it so deeply into our hearts, imaginations, and thinking that we begin to instinctively “live out” the gospel.
So let us preach grace till humility just starts to grow in us.