1 : free from guile
2 a : free from vanity
b : free from ostentation or display a simple outfit
3 : of humble origin or modest position a simple farmer
4 a : lacking in knowledge or expertise a simple amateur of the arts
b (1) : stupid
(2) : mentally retarded
c : not socially or culturally sophisticated
5 a : sheer, unmixed simple honesty
b : free of secondary complications a simple vitamin deficiency
c (1) : having only one main clause and no subordinate clauses a simple sentence
(2) of a subject or predicate
d : constituting a basic element
e : not made up of many like units a simple eye
6 : free from elaboration or figuration simple harmony
7 a (1) : not subdivided into branches or leaflets a simple stem a simple leaf
(2) : consisting of a single carpel
(3) : developing from a single ovary a simple fruit
b : controlled by a single gene simple inherited characters
8 : not limited or restricted
9 : readily understood or performed simple directions the adjustment was simple to make 10 of a statistical hypothesis
All of these definitions can be found in the Merriam Webster dictionary. Simple may be not so simple because it can mean a lot of different things. We are going to look at 1, 2, 3, 4c, and 5a.
In 1 we see that simple references innocence. We are all born as innocent people, but as we mature and we learn to understand right from wrong our innocence fades away. We lose our innocence because our fleshly desires take us places that destroy God’s perfect creation.
At birth we are not vain members of society. We wet and mess ourselves and others have to tend to our every need. Once we get a bit bigger we don’t really care how our attire looks we just want to be loved and have fun. Compliments on our attire gives us a feeling of happiness and acceptance…now we start attempting to draw pleasure by being pleasing to others. Here is where the root of our vanity begins and we become prideful in our ability to please others with our looks and actions.
Not everyone comes from humble origins, but everyone can act like they are on the same plane as others. The movie “Coming to America” is an example of someone who makes themselves humble because he didn’t want to marry someone because his money drew her to him. At the same time, those of low estate should consider the fact that every person puts their pants on one leg at a time and none of us are more important than the other in the grand scheme of things. Some elbow grease and dedication can change things.
Social sophistication is simply training in the correct manners and actions a person should display in different situations. You might hear statements like: mind your manners, that was a bit uncouth, and we don’t behave that way young man. All of these are statements are attempts to train one in the correct actions and thinking. The show “Annie” displays the difference in social sophistication. Annie the orphan girl is borrowed by a Mr. Warbucks who is very wealthy. Annie tries her hardest to pick up all the intricacies of sophistication but just cannot seem to get it down. She is going to be sent back to the orphanage and all of a sudden the old man realizes how having Annie around has been a joy. He ends up adopting her and the show ends happily ever after.
We also are born with a lack of deceit. As we grow we find that deceit may assist us in getting our way and protect us from discipline. Deceit is one of the worst sins as they tend to pile on…and on…and on. We tell a lie and then we must tell another lie to cover up or strengthen the first lie… What a sad state we find ourselves in when the lies start to find us out or unravel you might say. People lose their confidence in us and our lives can be ruined. What a powerful little sin deceit can be in our lives.
Christ came to the world as a simple carpenter (humble and of low estate). His dress would have been of as a simple lower class member of society. Innocent as we were at birth…He continued in innocence. Though tempted in all ways as we are He did not sin. He states himself that He came to confound the wise but reveal Himself to the simple. Why did the simple understand and the wise were confused? The wise thought they knew it all and a simple carpenter would not be able to know more. While the simple unassuming members of society were not pious but open to hope and trust.
No matter what our state in life is, we must be humble and accepting that we are foolish in our understanding of Christ and God’s plans. Our humble foolishness should drive us to the desire to learn more of Him and to live a life inline with God’s plan as He daily reveals it to us. Let us then be humble before God and accept that we need more knowledge and direction from Him.