This passage, Phil 2:6-11, is a deep theological statement, foundational to the Christian faith, but also has practical application.
This application is especially helpful as we seek to live out our faith as Christ followers around others.
Let’s remember, this letter to the Philippians was initially sent to a young church Paul had started about eleven years prior. This church was full of young believers and believers from different backgrounds. And there was some conflict.
But Paul wanted them, and those of us who would read the Holy inspired words, to have the mind of Christ, (Phil 2:5) and the specific facet of the mind of Christ he goes on to describe here should help us as we interact with others.
Would you open your Bible and read Philippians 2:6-11 for yourself? I love to hear those beautiful Bible pages crinkle, don’t you? ❤️
Some theologians suggest this passage was sung by the early church. And most of us, who have ever listened to music, know singing has a way of helping us remember.
So, let’s dive into this passage, let’s let it sink deep within us, so our lives might “sing” it.
(Jesus) “who, though he was in the form of God,” (Phil 2:6) (Remember, Christ is fully God. He did not begin His existence in the manger, but is the eternal God.)
(Jesus) “did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped,” (Jesus did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, because He already, and always, had that equality).
(Jesus who had everything and needed nothing) “made himself nothing, taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men.” (Phil 2:7) (Though fully God, Jesus came in the form of a man, fully man while still fully God, He came as a servant.)
(Jesus) “humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross”(Phil 2:8) Hallelujah!!
(Christ humbly sat aside His privileges as God and died on a Cross in order that men might be saved.)
And so, a very practical application from this is that as Christ followers, at the very least, we should have humble hearts when dealing with others.
We should look to the interests others (especially their eternal salvation) instead of seeking our own self-promoting ways.
We should live, not demanding our own way, but in a way that others might see Christ in us.
This may mean— we love those who haven’t loved us well or even at all.
The Bible says, “If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners love those who love them”. (Luke 6:32, the also see Luke 6:27-36)
Ouch! That’s hard I know.
But we seek to do this because our Lord did, and if we want to stand any chance to live this out, we absolutely have go to God daily in prayer, and by reading the Word, and by asking others to hold us accountable to find the strength to do this.
We will learn to do things like let the silly argument go, even when we know we are right. We may need to sometimes delete that text or post before we send it.
We don’t try to repay evil for evil. (1 Pet 3:9)
Why? Why, when this is SO hard? Because we serve the One who humbled Himself and brings blessing through humility, through servants hearts, and through eternal perspective living.
Friends, as I write these words, God is showing me areas and people where I need to apply these truths better. What He is showing me is not pretty!
I KNOW it’s not easy, but I trust God more than I trust me, so I’m asking Him to help me live this out to the honor and glory of our Lord who, “humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross”(Phil 2:8)
What a Savior!!