Our passage today is extremely powerful. The book of Philippians is one of Paul’s most positive letters. He commends the Philippian church for numerous things throughout the book, with the whole point being about the church’s role in advancing the gospel. In this passage, Paul is telling the church to see and model the heart of Christ. He tells them to specifically model the humility of Christ. What does humility look like in the life of the church?
We know that Jesus says that the two greatest commandments are to love God and love people (Matthew 22:36-40). When our focus is on God and others, it is not on ourselves. That is true humility. How is that lived out?
When we are consumed with loving God and others more than ourselves, we will be willing to sacrifice our preferences for the good of the church. It’s not about our preferences, it’s about Christ’s mission!
The key to unity is selflessness. Can you imagine how many relational problems, whether in the church, marriage, work, etc. could be solved if we took the focus off of ourselves and put our focus on God and others?
Serve Others (5-7)
Active selflessness leads to active service. Paul is imploring us to recognize the example of Jesus and model it in how we serve others. Jesus did not think he deserved anything, rather he emptied himself. Do we empty ourselves for the good of our brothers and sisters in Christ?
Radical Obedience (8-11)
Those who love God and love others are those who are obedient to God’s Word and live it out. This obedience does not come from a position of gaining approval or love but because we have approval and love through Christ. Obedience is a natural overflow of a heart that loves God and loves others.
My encouragement to you is to take some time to remind yourself of this passage throughout the day. Pray and ask God to give you awareness for where pride has built up strongholds in your heart, and ask for grace to repent from them.
By: Graham Withers — Pastoral Ministry Apprentice