Westminster Shorter Catechism: Q27

Question: WSC 27: Wherein did Christ’s humiliation consist?

Answer: Christ’s humiliation consisted in his being born, and that in a low condition, made under the law, undergoing the miseries of this life, the wrath of God, and the cursed death of the cross; in being buried, and continuing under the power of death for a time.

Scripture Memory: “…And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross” (Phil 2:8).

An Explanation: Christ’s humiliation was His willing and joyful obedience to God the Father to complete the mission that God gave Him as part of the Eternal Covenant or the Covenant of Peace to redeem a people from sin (Psa. 40; Isa. 11; 42; 49; 52-53; 54:10; Ezek. 34:25; John 17:1-5; Heb. 13:20-21). His humiliation caused Christ to be affected, tempted and touched in every way by sin’s effects in a world of sin and misery without being contaminated or tainted by sin Himself.

The humiliation of Christ included He, being the Eternal Son, not merely making an appearance as a man (as He did as the Angel of the LORD in the Old Covenant), but taking upon Himself a human nature permanently in hypostatic-personal union with Himself for all eternity as Meditator and covenant representative of His people (Gal. 4:6; Luke 1:27-35).“The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born will be called holy- the Son of God.” Jesus Christ, one holy person with two natures, both God and man, was born to godly parents who were poor and insignificant in the eyes of the world. His glory as Son of God was veiled to the eyes of the watching world, and he was recognized as a “man of sorrows, acquainted with grief” (Isa. 53; Luke 2:25ff).

Christ was born under the Law as a man required to keep all of the commandments of God, and to walk in obedience with God in humility all of his days upon the earth (Gal. 4:6; Psa. 40:6-8). He lived in a fallen and broken world, feeling the real threats of temptations to sin, yet without sinning Himself (Heb. 4:14-16). Upon completion of HIs perfect work of joyful and submissive obedience to His Father as part of the Eternal Covenant, He laid down His life as a final sin offering for sinners to bring to His own unity and peace with God (John 17:20-26; Eph. 2:14-22). He was denied and rejected by His own people, and even His dearest friends, and was crucified in weakness for our transgressions. He who knew no sin became sin for us, so that we might know the righteousness of God in Him (2 Cor. 5:21). In His life, he knew no place of His own to lay His holy head, and in His death, no place of His own to rest His “broken” and dead body (Luke 9:58; 19:38ff). But through all this, Christ Jesus our Savior rejoiced in the Holy Spirit for His Beloved Bride, who was the Joy set before Him! (Luke 10:21; Heb. 12:3).

A Prayer: You are the Perfect One, O Mighty Savior, Jesus, my kind king. Let me walk as a sinner saved by grace in joyful obedience in you today. Let me offer myself to you willingly and joyfully as you offered yourself for me (John 17:17-19). Let me grown in my love for you , as I ponder your great glory and love for sinners—for me—in your humiliating and lowly estate to bring me near to God! Thank you!

In Christ’s Love,
Pastor Biggs