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Westminster Shorter Catechism Project

A Scripture Catechism
in the
Method of the Assembly's

by Matthew Henry

Q. 27. Wherein did consist Christ's humiliation?
A 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.

1. Did Jesus Christ humble himself? Yes: for being in the form of God, he made himself of no reputation, Phil. 2:6, 7. Was it a deep humiliation? Yes for he said, I am a worm, and no man, Ps. 22:6. Was it requisite he should humble himself? Yes : for thus it is written, and thus it behoved Christ to suffer, Luke 24:46. And was that a proper expedient to atone for our sin? Yes: for the sinner had said, I will be like the Most High, Isa. 14:14.

2. Did Christ humble himself in his birth? Yes: for he who thought it not robbery to be equal with God, was made in the likeness of men, Phil. 2:6, 7. Was he born of that which was then a poor family? Yes: he was a root of dry ground, Isa. 53:2. Was he born of a poor woman? Yes: for she offered for her cleansing only a pair of turtle doves, or two young pigeons, Luke 2:24. compare Lev. 12:8. Was his supposed father a poor man? Yes: they said, Is not this the carpenter's son, Matt. 13:55. Was lie born in a poor place? Yes: Bethlehem was little among the thousands of Judah, Mic. 5:2. Was he born in poor circumstances? Yes: in the stable of an inn, and laid in a manger, Luke 2:7. Had he respect paid him that was due to an incarnate Deity? No: for he was in the world, and the world knew him not, John 1:10. Was he respected by his countrymen? No: he came to his own, but his own received him not, v.11. Was he born honourably? No: for he took upon him the form of a servant, Phil. 2:7. Was he born wealthy? No: though he was poor het for our sakes he became poor, 2 Cor. 8:9.

3. Was Christ made under the law? Yes: God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law, Gal. 4:4. Was he circumcised? Yes: when eight days were accomplished, Luke 2:21. Was he presented in the temple? Yes: they brought him to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord, ver. 22. Did he keep the passover? Yes: when he was twelve years old, he went up to Jerusalem, after the custom of the feast, ver. 42. Was he obedient to his parents? Yes: he went down with them to Nazareth, and was subject to them, ver. 51. Did he pay tribute? Yes: that give for me and thee, Matt. 17:24, 27. Did he fulfil all righteousness? Yes: thus it becometh us to fulfil all righteousness, Matt. 3:15. Did he submit to the law of the mediatorship? Yes: thy law is within my heart, Ps. 40:8.

4. Was his education mean? Yes: for they said, Is not this the carpenter? Mark 6:3. Was the place of his abode despicable? Yes: can any good thing come out of Nazareth? John 1:46. Did he live in honour? No: for he was despised and rejected of men, Isa. 53:3. Was he attended by great folks? No: have any of the rulers, or of the Pharisees believed on him? John 7:48. Were his followers mean? Yes: for they were fishers, Matt. 4:18. Did he live in mirth and pleasure? No: he was a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief, Isa. 53:3. Was the sin of sinners a grief to him? Yes: he was grieved for the hardness of their hearts, Mark 3:5. Were the sorrows of his friends a grief to him? Yes: Jesus wept, John 11:35. Had he a house of his own? No: foxes have holes, and the birds of the air have nests, but the Son of man hath not where to lay his head, Luke 11:58. Was he fed with the finest of the wheat? No: he had barley-loaves, John 6:9. Did lie live upon alms? Yes: for certain women ministered to him of their substance, Luke 8:3. Had he a stately place to preach in? No: he taught the people out of the ship, Luke 5:8.

5. Was he tempted of Satan? Yes: he was in the wilderness forty days tempted of Satan, Mark 1:13. Was that a part of his sufferings? Yes: for he suffered, being tempted, Heb. 2:18. Was he persecuted betimes? Yes: Herod sought the young child to destroy him, Matt. 2:13. Was he slandered and reproached? Yes: they said of him, Behold a gluttonous man, and a wine-bibber, a friend of publicans and sinners, Luke 7:34. Was he represented as a madman? Yes: they said, He hath a devil, and is mad, John 10:20. And as one that is in league with the devil? Yes: they said, He casteth out devils by Beelzebub the prince of the devils, Matt. 12:24. Did they cavil at his preaching? Yes: he endured the contradiction of sinners against himself, Heb. 12:3. Did lie bear all this patiently? Yes: when lie was reviled, he reviled not again, 1 Pet. 2:23.

6. But notwithstanding this, had he honour done him in his humiliation? Yes: for it was said of him, He shall be great, Luke 1:82. Did God put honour upon him? Yes: he received from God the Father honour and glory, 2 Pet. 1:17. Did angels do him honour ? Yes: behold, angels came and ministered to him, Matt. 4:11. Did foreigners do him honour? Yes: Wise men of the east came to worship him, Matt. 2:2. Did the common report of the people do him honour? Yes: for some said he was Elias, others Jeremiah, or one of the prophets, Matt. 16:14. Did those that saw his miracles do him honour? Yes: for they said, it was never so seen in Israel, Matt. 9:83. Did inferior creatures do him honour? Yes: even the winds and the seas obeyed him, Matt. 8:27. Were devils themselves compelled to acknowledge him? Yes: for they said, We know thee who thou art, the Holy One of God, Mark 1:24.

7. Did he humble himself unto death ? Yes: he humbled himself, and became obedient to death, Phil. 2:8. Did he die for us? Yes: he was delivered for our offences, Rom. 4:25. Was this according to the counsels of God ? Yes he was delivered by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God, Acts 2:23. Did he suffer in his soul? Yes for he said, Now is my soul troubled, John 12:27. Did he suffer from his Father ? Yes: he was stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted, Isa. 53:4. Did he suffer in soul from his Father? Yes: for he put him to grief, ver. 10. Did this put him into an agony? Yes: he began to be sorrowful, and very heavy, Matt. 26:37. Did he suffer this for us? Yes: for he made him sin for us who knew no sin, 2 Cor. 5:21. And yet did the Father love him even when he bruised him ? Yes: therefore doth my Father love me, because I lay down my life, John 10:17.

8. Did he suffer from Satan? Yes: thou shall bruise his heel, Gen. 3:15. Did Satan set upon him? Yes: the prince of this world cometh, John 14:30. But did Satan conquer him? No: he hath nothing in me, John 14:30. Did he suffer from the Jews? Yes: for they cried, Crucify him, crucify him, Luke 23:21. Did he suffer from the chief of the Jews? Yes: he was the stone which the builders refused, Ps. 118:29. Did he suffer from the Romans? Yes: the princes of this world crucified the Lord of glory, 1 Cor. 2:8. Was he betrayed by Judas? Yes: they put it into the heart of Judas Iscariot to betray him, John 13:2. Was he sold for thirty pieces of silver? Yes: A goodly price that I was prized at, Zech. 11:13. Was he forsaken by his own disciples? Yes: all his disciples forsook him, and fled, Matt. 26:56.

9. Was he falsely accused? Yes: they sought false witnesses against him to put him to death, Matt. 26:59. Was he basely abused? Yes: he hid not his face from shame and spitting, Isa. 1:6. Was he condemned as a blasphemer? Yes: they said, He hath spoken blasphemy, Matt. 25:65. Was he condemned as a traitor? Yes: for they said he perverted the nation, forbidding to give tribute to Caesar, Luke 23:2. Was he scourged? Yes: for by his stripes we are healed, Isa. 53:5. Was he exposed to contempt ? Yes: he was a reproach of men, and despised of the people, Ps. 22:6. Did they scoff at him as a prophet? Yes: they said, Prophesy who smote thee, Matt. 26:68. Did they scoff at him as a King? Yes: they said, Hail, King of tile Jews, Matt. 27:29. Did they scoff at him as a Priest and Saviour? Yes: they said, He saved others, himself he cannot save, Matt. 27:42.

10. Was he sentenced to the cross? Yes: Pilate delivered him to be crucified, Matt. 27:26. Was he crucified between two thieves? Yes: he was numbered with the transgressors, Isa. 53:12. Did he die a bloody death? Yes: for the life of the flesh is in the blood, and it is the blood that makes atonement for the soul, Lev. 17:11, Did he die a painful death? Yes: they pierced his hands and feet, Ps. 22:16. And a shameful death? Yes: he endured the cross, despising the shame, Heb. 12:2. And accursed death? Yes: for he that is hanged is accursed of God, Deut, 21:23. Gal. 3:13. Did God seem to withdraw from him in his sufferings? Yes: he cried with a loud voice, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me ? Matt. 27:46.

11. Did Christ die to glorify God? Yes: For this cause came I to this hour. Father, glorify thy name, John 12:27, 28. Did he die to satisfy for our sins? Yes: it was to finish transgression, and to make an end of sins, to make reconciliation for iniquity, and bring in everlasting righteousness, Dan 9:14. Did he die to conquer Satan? Yes: he spoiled principalities and powers, triumphing over them in his cross, Col. 2:15. Did he die to save us from sin? Yes: he gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, Titus 2:14. Did he die to purchase heaven for us? Yes: for it is the purchased possession, Eph. 1:14. Heb. 9:15. Was he in his death made a curse for us? Yes: for Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us, Gal. 3:13. Did Christ sweat for us? Yes: his sweat was, as it were, great drops of blood, Luke 22:44. And thorns being also a fruit of the curse, did Christ wear them for us ? Yes: they platted a crown of thorns and put it upon his head, Matt. 27:29.

12. Did Christ do all that was to be done in his sufferings for us ? Yes: he said, It is finished, John 19:30. Did the events answer the predictions? Yes: for the Scriptures must be fulfilled, Mark 14:49. Are we sure that Christ was truly dead ? Yes: for one of the soldiers with a spear pierced his side, and forthwith came thereout blood and water, and he that saw it bare record, John 19:34, 35. Did Christ die as a martyr? Yes: for before Pontius Pilate he witnessed a good confession, 1 Tim. 6:13. Did he die as a testator ? Yes: for where a testament is, there must needs be the death of the testator, Heb. 9:16. Did he die as a sacrifice ? Yes: Christ our passover is sacrificed for us, 1 Cor. 5:7.

13. Was there honour done to Christ even in his sufferings? Yes: the earth did quake, and the rocks rent, and the graves were opened, Matt. 27:51. And were some thereby convinced ? Yes: they feared greatly, saying, Truly this was the Son of God, Matt. 27:5r Is the cross of Christ then a reproach to us? No: God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, Gal. 6:14. Is it what we should all be acquainted with ? Yes: I determined to know nothing but Jesus Christ, and him crucified, 1 Cor. 2:12. And ought we to celebrate the praises of our crucified Saviour? Yes: Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive honour, and glory, and blessing, Rev. 5:12.

14. When Christ was dead, was he buried ? Yes: they took him down from the tree, and laid him in a sepulchre, Acts 13:29. Was he buried according to the custom? Yes: as the manner of the Jews is to bury, John 19:40. Did he continue under the power of death for a time? Yes: for as Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale's belly, so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth, Matt. 12:40. Was this his descent into hell? Yes: he descended into the lower parts of the earth, Eph. 4:9. Did his separate soul go to paradise ? Yes: This day shalt thou be with me in paradise, Luke 23:43. Did his body see corruption? No: Thou wilt not leave my soul in hell, neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption, Acts 2:27.

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