Philippians 2 describes the attitude we should have while following Jesus. It’s a stark contrast to how Christians are perceived today.
I’m not saying we are that way, some people are, but what should our attitude be when we follow Jesus? What should we be striving for?
Philippians 2 also goes into these questions in great detail. The attitude Christ had, is the same as we should have. He loved those around him but wasn’t afraid to correct the people who were wrong.
Especially when they were the ones in charge. It’s one of the things I love about Philippians 2.
The Bible states that God does not show favoritism, and I think that’s amazing. We all have fallen short, and we’ve all been given the gift of eternal life. It’s on us to accept or reject it.
God created us, made us look the way we do, and gave us our personalities. Some people say that’s him making his choices, but I say he gave us all different building blocks, and we have to make choices on a daily basis after that.
2 Is there any encouragement from belonging to Christ? Any comfort from his love? Any fellowship together in the Spirit? Are your hearts tender and compassionate? 2 Then make me truly happy by agreeing wholeheartedly with each other, loving one another, and working together with one mind and purpose.
3 Don’t be selfish; don’t try to impress others. Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourselves. 4 Don’t look out only for your own interests, but take an interest in others, too.
5 You must have the same attitude that Christ Jesus had.
6 Though he was God, he did not think of equality with God as something to cling to. 7 Instead, he gave up his divine privileges; he took the humble position of a slave and was born as a human being. When he appeared in human form, 8 he humbled himself in obedience to God and died a criminal’s death on a cross.
9 Therefore, God elevated him to the place of highest honor and gave him the name above all other names, 10 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, 11 and every tongue declare that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
Philippians 2 Chasing After The Attitude Of Christ
There are two points I want to make about the previous verses. This is how we can chase after the attitude of Christ.
We are not as important as we like to think we are.
Our Focus should be helping others.
In our culture today we have a sense of entitlement that likes to float around. Sometimes we call people like that Karens or other generalized terms. Philippians 2 explains the attitude Christ had when going to the cross.
He didn’t need to go, he is the Son of God, but instead of sitting up in heaven, he decided to come down, be shamed, and ultimately killed. Philippians 2 explains that he became the sacrifice and took the blame for what we did.
This is why I believe wholeheartedly, that we need to give our whole hearts to God. If you’re pressing into the kingdom of God, only one thing matters and that is Jesus. Philippians 2 states that Jesus gave everything up, humbled himself, and took the curse we were destined for.
We all deserved death, and Jesus didn’t deserve or need to come. Instead, love drove him down here, and I’m sure he knew some people would still not accept him.
Philippians 2 is a hail mary, and I’m grateful that Jesus did it.
Whatever you do brings glory or shame to the cross, and that includes things done in secret.
Philippians 2: Focus on God, and Focus on Others, You’re at the End of a Short Line.
This should be a no-brainer, and many Christians forget this. Sometimes, I don’t understand how that’s possible. But when you see someone on the street, help them. When somebody falls down in front of you, help them up.
However, helping others is the most fantastic way we can evangelize, unfortunately, our culture and probably Satan. Have gotten us so busy that we don’t look around anymore. There are people who live by us going to sleep hungry.
Many people have lost their jobs in recent months, (and probably in the future months). Have you gone over to check in on them?
When I was in Masters Commission, one of the phrases I overheard was Bloom Where you are planted, and that has stuck with me for years.
Pay attention to the people around you. It’s fine if you have nothing to give. Sometimes people just need an ear to listen. In Philippians 2, Jesus wasn’t sitting in the court of heaven talking with the angels not paying attention.
Jesus saw the needs of his people, put aside his glory, and came to earth.
Philippians 2: Shining Brightly for Christ
12 Dear friends, you always followed my instructions when I was with you. And now that I am away, it is even more important. Work hard to show the results of your salvation, obeying God with deep reverence and fear. 13 For God is working in you, giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases him.
14 Do everything without complaining and arguing, 15 so that no one can criticize you. Live clean, innocent lives as children of God, shining like bright lights in a world full of crooked and perverse people. 16 Hold firmly to the word of life; then, on the day of Christ’s return, I will be proud that I did not run the race in vain and that my work was not useless.
17 But I will rejoice even if I lose my life, pouring it out like a liquid offering to God,[e] just like your faithful service is an offering to God. And I want all of you to share that joy. 18 Yes, you should rejoice, and I will share your joy.
Philippians 2 The Behavior Of A Christ Follower
I touched off on this a little bit in the last paragraph I wrote. But I think verse 14 says a lot. We need to do everything without complaining or arguing.
I like to be really sarcastic, and sometimes I take it too far, however, I think this is talking about legit whining. There’s a life that we’re called to live as children of God, and I’m not going to be legalistic here and write things out.
You don’t have to ask God if it’s okay to steal or not, he already told you it’s wrong. However there are a lot of other things that we need to ask God to do, and a lot of mentalities in our minds that are wrong.
For example, this morning I was getting into my car and headed to work. Outloud I prayed, “God help me be nice to everyone today, I know you’ve commanded me to do so.”
Instantly I felt sick to myself because being nice to everybody isn’t what we are called to do.
God has called us to love everyone, and sometimes loving someone doesn’t involve being nice to them. Have you ever heard of tough love? That’s not nice, or correcting behavior that could lead to problems? That isn’t nice?
19 If the Lord Jesus is willing, I hope to send Timothy to you soon for a visit. Then he can cheer me up by telling me how you are getting along.
20 I have no one else like Timothy, who genuinely cares about your welfare. 21 All the others care only for themselves and not for what matters to Jesus Christ.
22 But you know how Timothy has proved himself. Like a son with his father, he has served with me in preaching the Good News.
23 I hope to send him to you just as soon as I find out what is going to happen to me here. 24 And I have confidence from the Lord that I myself will come to see you soon.
Philippians 2 Being Faithful With Little, Makes You Faithful With Much
In the second half of the chapter Paul commends his ministry partners, and he commends them. In fact, in sending them out for visits to these churches, he’s sending them in his name.
The people understand Paul can’t be everywhere, but he’s sending Timothy as his second, and they know the spirit flows through him just like it does Paul.
This is because Timothy proved himself while serving and being mentored by Paul.
Philippians 2: Paul Commends Epaphroditus
25 Meanwhile, I thought I should send Epaphroditus back to you. He is a true brother, co-worker, and fellow soldier. And he was your messenger to help me in my need. 26 I am sending him because he has been longing to see you, and he was very distressed that you heard he was ill.
27 And he certainly was ill; in fact, he almost died. But God had mercy on him—and also on me so that I would not have one sorrow after another.
28 So I am all the more anxious to send him back to you, for I know you will be glad to see him, and then I will not be so worried about you.
29 Welcome him in the Lord’s love[f] and with great joy, and give him the honor that people like him deserve. 30 For he risked his life for the work of Christ, and he was at the point of death while doing for me what you couldn’t do from far away.
Philippians 2 Continue Spreading The Gospel
Philippians is one of my favorite books of the bible, and this chapter has a lot of information in it. I’m scared that while I do these breakdowns I’m missing huge chunks of things God wants me to share.
However, that means I need to come back and make an update sometime in the future.
The truth of the matter is Christianity is pretty easy, and yet it’s complex (confusing right).
On the one hand we Jesus, he’s sent by God to die for us. After 3 days God resurrects him, and he defeats sin and death.
All we need to do is as him into our lives and live for him.
It’s a win/win, life is hard, but when you have Jesus in your life you have someone to walk with you.
I’m not saying things will get easy, in fact, I think they get worse, however, whatever road I travel. It’s great to know that Jesus is there with me. Sometimes we slog through the mud, and others we’re on a nice path.
Sterling grew up in the suburbs of Minneapolis. As a kid he loved skateboarding but mostly did street riding. He injured his ankle badly when he dropped into his first half pipe. His skateboarding slowed down after that, but he still loved the sport. While in his 20's he needed to make a change, so he did some world traveling with a motivational speaking group. Through it all, he visited 46 states and 3 continents and eventually lived in Mississippi. In 2005, Hurricane Katrina tore through the state. He jumped into the fray, helping mobilize support for the evacuees of New Orleans & The Gulf Coast. During the aftermath he helped run a shelter and drove food & medical supplies to affected areas by truck. Currently he lives in Minneapolis, runs his snowboard shop, and shreds Vail Whenever he can.