Saturday, April 30, 2011

Emulating Others

As we study Philippians 2:1-11, we recall from chapter 1:27-30 that Paul encouraged the Philippians to stand firm in one spirit because the enemy was out to destroy the church, but would be saved by God if they believe on Him. Our lesson continues with Paul urging the church to live in harmony with an attitude of love. Paul writes, if we have a connection with Christ, unity and love for one another, keeping before us the purpose of Jesus' birth, burial and resurrection, then we must focus on the true purpose of the church, which is evangelism and disciple making.

Paul points out that we should not be selfish; we should consider the interest of others, not just our interest. Our actions and decisions should not be for personal reasons, but for the purpose of spreading the gospel. In humility you are to consider others better than yourself. God gave us the perfect example - Jesus. Look what He did for us. God loves each of us with an unfailing love, and that love through Christ is to be emulated by us to each other.

Jesus Christ is equal to God and has always existed with God (John 1:1-14, Colossians 1:15-20). In Christ, God emptied Himself and became a servant in person - Jesus. Jesus laid down His divine rights and privileges, became a human out of love for His Father. His obedience even to death on the cross of His Father wishes were glorified by God. He was raised to His original position at His Father's right hand where He will reign forever as Lord and Judge. His name is above all names, now all things in heaven, in earth and under the earth will bow to Him, and according to verse 11, every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

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