Wednesday, December 3. Philippians 2 – 4

As chapter 1 ended, Paul urged the Philippian Christians to conduct themselves in a manner worthy of Christ. He does not, however, leave us to figure out what that means on our own.

In chapter 2, Paul spells it out explicitly: Jesus gave himself for us. Though Jesus was God, being God for him was not something to be selfishly held onto. Instead, he divested himself of his status and took on that of a human – and a slave at that.

The incarnation of God in Jesus is the most significant and unique teaching of Christianity. For the benefit of mankind, God became a man. If God would do that for us, what should we not be willing to sacrifice for the good of one another? Paul followed in the footsteps of Jesus being “poured out like a drink offering.” Likewise, Timothy put the welfare of others above his own and Epaphroditus nearly lost his life in service to Paul in behalf of the Philippian church. This is the heart of Paul’s message. No difference should separate the people of God for whom God sacrificed everything and everyone who follows the example of God will willingly yield up the same sacrificial life.