A Humble Service (Phil 2:5-11)
In the passage we just read, Paul the Apostle wrote to the church of Philippi instructing them on how they are to live. Showing Jesus as their perfect example, and that by following His example they can successfully live their Christian life. We also today, God expect us and I to follow and to emulate the character of Jesus.
Phil.2:5 says, Have this mindset, this attitude, in you which was in Christ. If we are to comply with the admonitions found in verses 1-4 we must possess the same mind and the same attitude of Christ. Phil 2:1-4. So, the only way to achieve all these requirements of a perfect church is by following the example Jesus Christ as set for us in Verses 5-11
This is what confirms our new birth (nature) in Christ. 2Cor 5:17. You cannot have Christ living in you and not be in the place of service. You must be prepared to do what Jesus did, think what Jesus thought, have the understanding of service that He had. Remember, an attitude will remain abstract and intangible until it is physically expressed, it is unknown until it is exercised in actions. Our attitude should always determine our actions. James 2:18
The Timeless Principles of Jesus toward service
· There are five things Jesus Christ exemplified about service in this passage which we also must adopt in our lives if we must pattern after Christ.
1. Being a servant means giving up our rights for others
in verse 6 the Bible says “Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God”. Christ always has been, is, and always will be God. But Paul is saying, because we have Jesus living in us, we too must demonstrate the divine nature and overcome the desire to live for self. John 1:14. Jesus was not looking out for Himself, but for others. He surrendered His rights, for you and me.
By Christ standard, he who would be the greatest among us is he who must take the role of a servant, servanthood means giving up our rights for others.
2. Being a servant means becoming less so others can become more
Look at verse 7 (7 But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men)
Jesus Christ emptied himself and made Himself nothing by taking on the form of a slave. From Heaven to the cross, from Robes to rags, from being served to serving, from being exalted to being executed. In our own case, it is all about getting instead of giving, being served instead of serving, God obeying us instead of us obeying God. If we are going to be like Jesus, we must become servants, allowing others to become more at our expense.
3. Servanthood means being obedient at whatever cost
Look at verse 8. (8 And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.)
Jesus humbled Himself. He who made all men, who knew the hearts of all men, who had all authority over men, humbled Himself and allowed Himself to be executed. John 1:11-12. Therefore, genuine discipleship involves being obedient to Christ at whatever cost. We can’t have selective obedience. There are no part time or partial disciples.
4. Servanthood will be rewarded
Look at verses 9-11. (9 Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: 10 That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; 11 And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father)
(remember “He has not called the house of Jacob to serve Him in vain”) Prov. 22:4, Matt 23:11-12, James 4:10
5. Being a servant is more about BEING than it is about DOING
There is no genuine life in Christ without the power of the Holy Spirit which transforms us into the likeness of Christ. Any one that puts self above others is not and cannot be a true Christian. We are to serve others instead of being served, give rather than get, obey rather than dominate.
Conclusion, Are you here to serve or are you here to be served? Is your attitude like the world’s or is it like Christ’s? Are you going through the motions of service or are you becoming a servant? The example has been set; the call is clear. All that remains today is your response, your decision, your commitment. Will you be like Jesus today or not?
Pastor Lanre Areola