Imitating Christ’s Humility
1If you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any fellowship with the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, 2then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and purpose. 3Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. 4Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.
5Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus:
6Who, being in very nature God,
did not consider equality with God something to be grasped,
7but made himself nothing,
taking the very nature of a servant,
being made in human likeness.
8And being found in appearance as a man,
he humbled himself
and became obedient to death—
even death on a cross!
9Therefore God exalted him to the highest place
and gave him the name that is above every name,
10that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow,
in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
11and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord,
to the glory of God the Father.
“If He Can Do It..”
I think the most encouraging thing you can know about a difficult or daunting situation is that someone has done it before. Maybe you are at the end of a diving board in your swimsuit, and looking into the water below makes your head spin. You back away until you see a little kid go screaming off the end and do a cannonball – and the realization breaks, that “HEY! If that kid can do it…I probably can do it as well!” The impossible has been made possible.
And that is what this passage reveals to us as well. Humility can kind of be like that diving board, a difficult course to follow, and very unnatural for us. Taking the high road of humility can seem so hard and…humbling. But then we realize that Jesus did it, and he was God himself. And if Jesus, Son of God, can humble himself in tough situations, then you probably can do it as well!
Additionally, it helps to remember why Jesus humbled himself, even to death on a cross – so he could earn a great victory; so he could be exalted and lifted up; so he could win our salvation from the Enemy. So yes, we can humble ourselves because Jesus has gone before us and shown that it is possible, but additionally, we do so because we know that God will lift us up in the process – it will be worth it in the end!
1. Is there a situation in your life which requires you to be humble, perhaps more humble than you would like to be?
2. Did Jesus ever have to humble himself in the same way you would have to, i.e. to someone who didn’t deserve it? If so, is there a way you can imitate Christ’s actions?
3. What benefit could there be from humbling yourself in this situation?