Philippians 2:5-7 ESV
Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God…emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant
Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: who, being in the form of God…made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant
Philippians 2:5-7 KJV
Let this mind be in you. The Christian life is not merely intellectual assent to a list of orthodox tenets. It is internalizing the teaching and example of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
And as we look at Christ through the infallible lens of God’s Word the Bible, we are reminded that his way is up-side-down (or rather right-side-up) from the way of this world. Jesus did not work his way to the top; he started at the top, as God himself, and yet chose to humble himself for the sake of his people.
Here was a self-made man: Jesus, who is due all glory and honor, made himself of no reputation. Jesus, who is King of Kings and Lord of Lords, took on himself the role of a servant. How sad and ironic that most of us spend all our energy in life striving to do the exact opposite.
This is doubtless why Jesus, from the outset, told those who admired him that they would have to deny themselves in order to become his disciple. Yet so many Christians want to claim discipleship, but without the sacrifice, without the self-denial, without the humility.
Beloved, let this mind be in you — may you internalize the reality of who Christ is, of how he lived, and of what he demands of us.
Devotional: Job 23:10 (ESV)
Job 23:10 ESV
He knows the way that I take;
when he has tried me, I shall come out as gold.
He knoweth the way that I take: when he hath tried me, I shall come forth as gold
Job 23:10 KJV
Are you feeling the weight of some crushing burden or heartache? Job’s words speak immeasurable comfort in the midst of any trial.
First, remember he knows the way that I take. God is not unaware of your difficulty, nor is he insensitive to the pain you are feeling. He knows. He is intimately acquainted with your situation and your condition.
And if the all-wise, all-powerful, loving God is allowing one of his people to pass through affliction, you can rest assured that there is a purpose behind it. You may not as yet see it; you may not now even agree with it. But rest assured that when he has tried you, you will come out of the trial as refined, purified gold.
He hath tried me. The source of the fire may be cruel or malicious intentions on the part of others, but ultimately God is the one who is controlling the temperature and allowing you to pass through it. In Job’s case, the Bible reveals that the devil himself was the author of his sufferings; and yet Job correctly affirmed that the trial was coming through the hand of the Lord (2:10).
Believer, rest in this wonderful assurance, that God is at once next to you in your trial and on his throne in heaven. He knows the way you are taking, and is ruling over every detail of your difficulty until you are sanctified to his glory.
Verse: 1Peter 2:9
1 Peter 2:9 ESV
You are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.
Ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should show forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvelous light
1 Peter 2:9 KJV
Salvation is of the Lord. That is the point of Peter’s reminder: you are a chosen generation. As Jesus himself affirmed, “Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you” (John 15:16).
And what a salvation you have been chosen to! You are now a royal priesthood, a sacred and set apart nation, a distinctive people. The saints in heaven sing praises to the Lamb because he has “made us unto our God kings and priests” (Revelation 5:10).
But this wonderful gift of salvation is not, ultimately, man-centered. It is not primarily about us at all. Salvation was planned before creation, executed at the cross, and delivered to you by the Holy Spirit that ye should show forth the praises of the God who saved you.
God saved you for your good and for his glory. He brought you out of sin, and drew you to himself, and delivered you from hell so that his power and grace and justice and purity would be displayed in your salvation and in your life.
This, then, is the great work of evangelism. Not some artificial salesmanship, but an authentic display of the joy that you have found in Jesus, that others might see and know him through you.
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Closing: Guided Prayer
May the Lord bless you today and answer your prayers according to His Will, in Jesus name Amen.
Devotional: The Great Love of Jesus
The Great Love of Jesus
Love is the beginning of everything. You and I have life and breath at this very moment because God loves us. God created us because He wanted a people to love, and we are the recipients of His great love.
In 1 John 4:9, John tells his readers that the primary way God showed His love toward us is through Jesus. Even while we were considered enemies of God, He sent Jesus to earth on our behalf. While Jesus was on earth, he lived a sinless life as a representative of humanity to God. His death and resurrection made a way for us to be forgiven of our sins and begin a relationship with God.
God now gives us His love freely. There is nothing that we can do to earn His love, and there’s nothing about us that deserves His love. This is why John says love comes from God (1 John 4:7).
Love is our greatest responsibility in life. Jesus made it very clear to His disciples that loving God and loving others are the two greatest commandments. But the basis for all of this is the love of God through Jesus.
John tells us in 1 John 4:7-8 that those who truly know God will also love others. Our relationship with God is the model for how we should love other people. We should never deny someone something we’ve been freely given. And since we have freely received love from God, we should also freely give love to others.
Consider some ways you can love the people around you. Sometimes simply spending time with people is the best way to love them. There might also be someone you know who needs encouragement, or help meeting their needs. Think of one or two things you can do this week to show love to someone in your life.