Philippians 2 is likely my favorite chapter of the Bible. The core teaching is in the first 4 verses and the remainder of the chapter is full of beautiful illustrations of how others lived this teaching.
The core teaching is this: love your neighbor as yourself.
You do this by considering others as better than you. You do this by looking out for the interests of others over your own.
Jesus is the supreme example of one who lived this teaching. Verses 5-11 tell us how he humbled himself and gave his life to save us from our sins. Because of his finished work on the cross, all who trust in Jesus will have their sins forgiven and have everlasting life.
The Son of God laid aside His glory, became a baby, lived a sinless life, laid down His life and died the death we deserve for our sins. No one can top that as a demonstration of living verses 1-4.
Next we see that the Apostle Paul was poured out as a drink offering on the sacrifice and service of your faith (vs. 17). Paul was the “Super Apostle” who poured out his life in service to our Lord and the churches he planted. Now I’m not Jesus, and I’m certainly not anywhere near the Apostle Paul in my walk with the Lord. Paul saw the Lord himself and heard the gospel straight from His mouth (Acts 9). You may ask: “Can I possibly live out the teaching in vss. 1-4? The bar is set so high.”
So in case you think you can’t, we’re given another example in Timothy, Paul’s faithful disciple and spiritual son in the Lord. Timothy proved over-and-again to be faithful in his walk with the Lord and his service to Christ. But Timothy was discipled by Paul himself. I haven’t had anyone disciple me like that.
Then there is good ole’ Epaphroditus. Now here’s a guy I can identify with. A Gentile with no “Super Apostle” discipleship. Just a man who loved Jesus and was devoted to loving God and loving his neighbor. By faith he considered others better than himself, and nearly died in his service to Paul and our Lord Jesus. I am so thankful that God’s word meets each of us right where we are. And that by His grace through faith we can obey it.
It is my prayer that you and I and the congregation of Living Hope Community Church will live the words of Philippians 2:1-4 and that by doing so the world will see and give glory to our Lord Jesus Christ. Let’s look for ways we can reach out to others ( family members, neighbors, co-workers, etc….) and help them with their needs. Let’s serve others from a motivation of love and worship to our Lord.
Blessings in Christ,