Tue Jun 4 – Imitate Christ

Philippians 2:1-8(CEB)

1Therefore, if there is any encouragement in Christ, any comfort in love, any sharing in the Spirit, any sympathy, complete my joy by thinking the same way, having the same love, being united, and agreeing with each other. Don’t do anything for selfish purposes, but with humility think of others as better than yourselves. Instead of each person watching out for their own good, watch out for what is better for others. Adopt the attitude that was in Christ Jesus:

Though he was in the form of God,
        he did not consider being equal with God something to exploit.
But he emptied himself
        by taking the form of a slave
        and by becoming like human beings.
When he found himself in the form of a human,
        he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death,
        even death on a cross.


I like the beginning of this scripture as it describes unity and harmony, being of one mind. A metaphor for this could be a sports team where the players work together, harmoniously, to score. Everyone is moving in the same direction. If you are an EMT worker you are normally part of a team working for the best interest of the patient and the team is at maximum effectiveness when everyone works together. No selfishness, no conceit. Think also how an emergency room team works together. In verse 5 Paul points to the attitude that was in Christ Jesus.

In verses 6 – 8 we see that Jesus did not stop being God. He did not empty himself of his deity. He poured the fullness of deity into his humanity. He took on human flesh and became a servant. He didn’t let his deity stop him from expressing his humanity. The incarnation resulted in Jesus being fully God and fully man. In theology this is known as the hypostatic union—two natures in one person. The hypostatic union, therefore, is the technical term for the unipersonality of Christ, whereby in the incarnation the Son of God was constituted a complex person with both a human and a divine nature.

We never see Jesus hesitate to serve because he never lost sight of who he was. He knew his position with God.  Paul presents the story of Christ’s incarnation as the ultimate paradigm for the humility and obedience requested of the Philippians and us today.

When we know who we are—a son or daughter of God—we can serve and work with others in a way that lifts up and encourages in the same way that Jesus did, and we will continually grow in the love and support of God.

by Clarence Beverage

For Pondering and Prayer

Unity, being of one mind, caring about the needs and interests of others, are all things that Jesus modeled and wanted us to do as those who follow him.

How do you see yourself as being able to do a particular thing that could make a difference? What touches your heart and makes you want to find the answer to the question? Where do you find inspiration?    

Prayer: Lord, thank you always for Your Word and the presence of your Spirit who speaks to us, helps us to understand you, and find inspiration, in your creation. We pray this in Jesus name. Amen.

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